“Do You Want To Know A Secret” is a Beatles’ song on their 1963 album, “Please Please Me”.
Recorded: 11th February, 1963
Studio: EMI Studios, London
Track Duration: 1:56
Record Label: Parlophone
Producer: George Martin
Engineer: Norman Smith
Do You Want To Know A Secret
Written primarily by John Lennon but credited to the Lennon-McCartney partnership, “Do You Want To Know A Secret” is a Fab Four album track from 1963. However, the band gave the song to Billy J Kramer with the Dakotas. They were also in the Brian Epstein stable and their single got to number one in the UK “NME” charts. Although those charts were what Radio Luxembourg would use, in the Record Retailer Chart, it reached number two.
Meanwhile, in America, where they were not releasing Beatles’ recordings in sync with other countries, this actually became a single with the B-side being, “Thank You Girl“. There, it reached number 2 in the Billboard Hot 100.
“The tune was from the Disney movie – ‘Want to know a secret? Promise not to tell. You are standing by a wishing well.’
So, I had this sort of thing in my head and I wrote it and just gave it to George to sing. I thought it would be a good vehicle for him because it only had three notes and he wasn’t the best singer in the world. He has improved a lot since then, but in those days his singing ability was very poor because (a) he hadn’t had the opportunity, and (b) he concentrated more on the guitar. So I wrote that – not for him as I was writing it, but when I had written it, I thought he could do it.”
All We Are Saying, David Sheff
The Beatles began recording “Do You Want To Know A Secret” on the 11th February, 1963. This was in Studio Two at the EMI Studios, London, during which they recorded 9 other songs. This was a marathon recording session between 10am and 10.45pm but they practically recorded the whole of the “Please Please Me” album. So it was a good day at the office, that’s for sure.
They also recorded the song many times for BBC Radio as this was a great way to get publicity. Their 2013 album, “On Air – Live At The BBC Volume 2” has the version from “Pop Go the Beatles” airing on the 30th July, 1963. They recorded that version on the 10th July but they were to record it 6 times in total for the BBC.