Wednesday, January 13, 2010

I've Got No Car And It's Breaking My Heart

The first song on side one of the Beatles sixth UK Parlophone LP is the very funky and original "Drive My Car". This is an original Lennon/McCartney tune and is written mainly by Paul. The odd time signature at the very beginning of the song is very hard to comprehend and to "feel" in my view. It's almost as if it's a screwed up edit but it's really not. "Drive My Car" was not only the first song on the record, but it was the first mainly McCartney-written song to be recorded.

The recording session for "Drive My Car" took place on Wednesday October 13 1965. The basic track was recorded first and it took four takes to perfect. There were various overdubs including a cowbell, another guitar - the guitar solo - tambourine - piano - vocal and John and Paul and joined by George. This recording session has the distinction of being the first Beatles recording session to go past the midnight hour. Over the rest of their career, the Beatles NOT recording past the midnight hour would have been an exception rather than the rule.

"Drive My Car" was mixed for mono on Monday October 25 1965 from the control room of studio two. The next day on October 26 1965, "Drive My Car" was mixed for stereo at the same location as the mono mix. For some strange reason, most of the tunes on the UK "Rubber Soul" LP have an extreme left/right separation and do not have much in the middle of the stereo spectrum. Therefore, when the LP was released on CD for the first time in 1987, George Martin had re-mixed the song in order to have the vocals a little more centered. The original 1965 stereo mix can be found on the 2009 remastered mono "Rubber Soul" as a bonus track (along with all of the other tracks from the LP with their original 1965 stereo mixes).

"Drive My Car" can be found as the opening track on the Parlophone UK LP/CD "Rubber Soul" as well as the opening track for the North American Capitol LP "Yesterday...And Today". The song is also featured on the Apple 2-LP/2-CD "The Beatles 1962-1966" as well as the EMI/Capitol 2-LP compilation "Rock 'N' Roll Music".

"Drive My Car" was not performed live by the Beatles was has been the opening song for a lot of Paul McCartney solo shows.

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