“Love You To” is a Beatles’ song from the 1966 album, “Revolver”. It’s a George Harrison composition which goes to show what a good songwriter he was. The track is also on the Yellow Submarine Songtrack album.
Released: 5th August, 1966
Recorded: 11th and 13th April, 1966
Studio: EMI Studios, London
Genre: Indian music, raga rock
Track Duration: 3:09 (mono), 3:00 (stereo)
Record Label: Parlophone
Songwriter: George Harrison
Producer: George Martin
Engineer: Geoff Emerick
Anil Bhagwat: tabla
Unnamed musicians from the Asian Music Circle: sitar, tambura
Yellow Submarine Songtrack
Love You To
George Harrison sings this song as well as playing most of the instruments, including the sitar. Although Paul McCartney and George Harrison gave a helping hand, most of the song comes comprises work from himself together with tabla player, Anil Bhagwat, and Indian musicians from the Asian Music Circle in London.
In 1965, Harrison successfully introduced the western world to the Indian instrument on a commercially available pop song. This was the memorable Norwegian Wood (This Bird Has Flown), of course. However, that song only introduced the sitar to western pop fans while this song was an attempt at recording a song entirely in the classical Indian style. The musical inspiration obviously came from sitarist, Ravi Shankar who later became Harrison’s sitar tutor.
George Harrison married Pattie Boyd on the 21st January, 1966, and he partly portrays his love towards her in this song. However, he also incorporates philosophical ideas after experimenting with drugs. In particular, LSD, which was the drug of the day. The Beatles were going along with the emerging counterculture from time to time and “Love You To” was one of the first examples of that.
On the 11th April, 1966, recording began in Studio Two of the EMI Studios, London during the 2.30pm-7.00pm session. They recorded three takes from which the last was suitable for the basic rhythm track. Harrison sang and played the acoustic guitar while Paul McCartney sang backing vocals that day too.
On the 13th April, Ringo Starr added his tambourine part together with further vocal pieces from Harrison himself. Further mixing took place on the 21st June to complete the track. There was an urgency to finish the song because the Revolver album was nearing completion and it was almost time for the first leg of their 1966 world tour.
Obviously with the Abbey Road team having all the experience necessary, they concluded all business on time. Although it didn’t appear on the Yellow Submarine Soundtrack album, it did appear in the Yellow Submarine Songtrack album from 1999. This is because in the Yellow Submarine film we get to hear a small sample from the song at the point of George Harrison’s introduction to the animated movie.