Saturday, September 19, 2009


"One, two, three, FAW..." so starts the first song on the LP. The count in to "I Saw Her Standing There" which had the working title "Seventeen" was edited onto a different take of the song. The count in was simply a frustrated McCartney trying to work out the tempo of the song as evident on bootleg material which features breakdowns due to the speed of the song, prompting the count down to be heard. Interestingly, on the "Introducing the Beatles" Vee Jay release , both mono and stereo feature the count in cut off so that you only hear the last number "faw" before the song launches into it's rock and roll swing beat. The mono version is preferable to me since this was recorded on twin track and the stereo version just sounds unbalanced as all the instrumentation is on one channel whilst the vocals come out of the other channel. The clarity of the instruments is very, very good on the mono CD remasters although I still prefer the version put out by German Odeon on the titled "Die Beatles" vinyl. There tends to be slightly less reverb on the German pressing. Needless to say, probably the best way to experience the sound would be on the original Parlophone UK "Please Please Me" LP. The US pressings don't really cut it as they tend to use second generation master tapes. For stereo, the Mobile Fidelity Sounds Lab LP is very good but EQed differently. This is all to my ears, anyway.

Back to the song in question: "I Saw Her Standing There" was mainly written by Paul, a standard rock chording with a twist before the chorus where it goes from the E to A to the unexpected C and the "ooohhh" vocal before it's natural conclusion. The bass line is quite original and almost "punk" like in it's execusion.It has become a Rock and Roll classic.

The bedrock of the song is take 01, with the count in from take 09 and the overdubbed handclaps are take 12. The Harrison guitar solo is very good and it was never repeated the same way for any live performances!

The song was performed live in Hamburg Germany on December 1962, approximately two months before it was recorded and is available on some of the "Star Club" recordings.

The song was performed live on the BBC eleven different times !

Interestly, on occasion, the second middle eight of the song was eliminated by the Beatles during live performance of the song in order to "shorten" it and try to contain to around two minutes. A fine example would be the performance on the Feb. 09 "Ed Sullivan" Show .

The song is also available on the US "Meet The Beatles", the Canadian "Long Tall Sally" LP, re-issued on the double "Rock and Roll Music" LP as well as the aforementioned LPs described above.

This song was performed live by John Lennon with Elton John in November 1974 at Madison Square Gardens. John dedicated the song to Paul. It would be his last live performance in front of a paying audience.

Paul has performed the song live with his touring band since 1989. I actually witnessed the performance at the Montreal Forum on December 09 of that year. It ended up on the LP/CD "Tripping the Live Fantastic". Very cool !!

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