Things We Said Today

“Things We Said Today” is indeed the B-side to the Beatles’ single, “A Hard Day’s Night” from 1964. Obviously, the song is on the album of that name too. Furthermore, this record was one of the 17 other Beatles’ single releases that got to number one in the UK. After they released this song, they sang it live on their North American tour that year. However, it wasn’t part of their live repertoire for too long.

In Detail

Albums/Single

Release Date: 10th July, 1964 (UK), 20th July, 1964 (US)
Recorded: 2nd June, 1964
Studio: EMI Studios, London
Format: 7inch single (B-side) (A-side is “A Hard Day’s Night“), also from the album
Genre: Rock
Track Duration: 2:38
Record Label: Parlophone
Songwriters: Lennon-McCartney
Producer: George Martin
Engineer: Norman Smith

Performers

Paul McCartney: double-tracked vocal, bass
John Lennon: acoustic rhythm guitar, piano
George Harrison: lead guitar, backing vocals
Ringo Starr: drums, tambourine

Track Source

7″ Single
A Hard Day’s Night
Live At The BBC

Things We Said Today

Paul McCartney wrote “Things We Said Today” in May, 1964 while on holiday in the Virgin Islands. He was with his girlfriend, Jane Asher and Ringo Starr who was with Maureen, his future wife.

In fact, when writing the song, they were cruising in the Caribbean in a yacht which had the name “Happy Days”.

“I remember writing Things We Said Today in one of the cabins below deck one afternoon on my acoustic guitar.”

Things We Said Today is the B-side to a number one Beatles' single A Hard Day's Night
Things We Said Today (Single) (1964)
Things We Said Today is a Beatles' song on their album, A Hard Day's Night
A Hard Day’s Night Album (1964)
Things We Said Today is a Betles' song which is also on their Live At The BBC album
Live At The BBC Album (1994)

“I got away from the main party but it was a bit queasy downstairs; you could smell the oil and the boat was rocking a bit and I’m not the best sailor in the world, so I wrote a little bit of it downstairs and then the rest of it on the back deck where you couldn’t smell the engine. I don’t know why the engine was on, I suppose we were moving.”

Paul McCartney
Many Years From Now, Barry Miles

The warm atmosphere and sunny climate has no reflection in the song. Paul was thinking of the future and that because of their chosen career paths, one day they may have to part.

“It was a slightly nostalgic thing already, a future nostalgia: we’ll remember the things we said today, sometime in the future, so the song projects itself into the future and then is nostalgic about the moment we’re living in now, which is quite a good trick. It has interesting chords.”

Paul McCartney
Many Years From Now, Barry Miles

Even though McCartney and Asher had personal relationship problems, they did manage to stay together until July, 1968. As a matter of fact, they had an engagement ceremony in December, 1967!

Recording Studio

The Beatles began recording “Things We Said Today” at the EMI Studios, London, on the 2nd June, 1964. The band only needed three takes to get it right. The first of those had a false start while the second was the rhythm track. The third take being their overdubbing tape which included the main vocals.

While take three included Ringo Starr’s tambourine playing and a piano piece by John Lennon, the final mix was to eliminate Lennon’s piano. However, due to leakage onto other microphones during the recording of the overdubs, the piano part got through somehow. There are some people who dispute this fact, but at this time, leakage is the only logical conclusion.

Obviously, most people with an interest in music know this Beatles’s song from the single release. However, The Beatles would often record shows for BBC Radio in their early days and they recorded this song twice for airing.

On the 14th of July, 1964, the band recorded the song for the BBC’s Top Gear programme for airing on the 16th. That recording is on the 1994 album, “Live At The BBC”. There is another version which they recorded on the 17th July for the BBC Radio show, “From Us To You” but this version is not commercially available yet.

Author: Bobby

I have been a Beatles fan since the early 1960s so I speak from my heart and soul. It was a pleasure to accept the role of Admin on The Beatles Forum when we left our old site. If you feel that something needs correcting with the information I provide, please contact me.

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