Monday, November 16, 2009

I'll Buy You A Diamond Ring My Friend

The last song on side one of the first movie soundtrack to the first Beatles film (well, at least the UK version) or the seventh song on the CD is a Lennon/McCartney original mainly written by Paul entitled "Can't Buy Me Love". This tune was also released as a single before filming for the movie started and was one of the Beatles' biggest hits. Since the song was also included in the film - the scene where the Beatles break out of the television studio via a fire escape - the song was automatically put on the soundtrack LP/CD.

"Can't Buy Me Love" was the first song recorded with the intent of being a single and eventually appearing in the film back in January 1964. Wednesday January 29 1964 to be exact. It was recorded at the same time as the German vocal songs and it was recorded at EMI Pathe Marconi Studio in Paris, France as the Beatles were appearing in Paris performing live at this time. The song was recorded in four takes. An edit of takes one and two in mono appear on Apple's 3-LP/2-CD compilation "Anthology 1" while the whole of take two in stereo appears on the "Unsurpassed Masters" series. Take four was the keeper for the commercial release. The overdubs include Paul's vocal and George's guitar solo.

"Can't Buy Me Love" was once again taken up with the Beatles back at EMI Studio two in London, England on February 25 1964. This time, George Harrison had acquired a twelve-string Rickenbacker electric guitar and decided to overdub his new instrument on the chorus, the intro and the ending. For the middle guitar solo, Harrison used his six string Gretch but it was played twice in order to give the same effect as the twelve-string. You can actually hear the original guitar solo from the Paris recording being leaked onto the commercial version.

"Can't Buy Me Love" was mixed for mono the next day on February 26 1964. The song was first mixed for stereo on March 10 1964 at EMI Studio two but not used. The previous February mono mix was tape copied for United Artists and Capitol Records on June 09 1964. Finally, "Can't Buy Me Love" was mixed once again for stereo along with the other upcoming LP songs on June 22 1964.

"Can't Buy Me Love" was performed live for the 1964 and 1965 tours as well as the 1964 Christmas shows. A live version can be found on the EMI/Capitol LP "The Beatles Live At the Hollywood Bowl".

The commercial version is available on the Parlophone UK LP/CD "A Hard Day's Night", the United Artists movie sountrack LP "A Hard Day's Night" (mono only), the Parlophone UK LP "A Collection of Beatles Oldies", the Apple compilation LP "Hey Jude/The Beatles Again", the Apple 2-LP/2-CD "The Beatles 1962-1966", the EMI/Capitol compilation LP "Reel Music", the EMI/Capitol compilation LP "20 Greatest Hits" (both the US and UK version), the Apple 2-LP/CD "1".

"Can't Buy Me Love" was performed three times for BBC radio: twice on "From Us To You" and once on "Saturday Club".

By the way, the picture sleeve for the original Capitol single (shown above) is one of the rarest and most collectible of all Beatles picture sleeves as the sleeve was made in very limited amounts back in the early 60s.


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