Of course,”Lucille” is a Little Richard song from 1957. However, The Beatles sang it many times live while gigging. They also recorded the song for BBC Radio shows from the early 1960’s.
Recorded: 7th September, 1963
BBC Radio Show: Saturday Club, 5th October, 1963 (Live At The BBC), Pop Go the Beatles, 17 September, 1963 (On Air – Live At The BBC Volume 2)
Producer: Bernie Andrews
In 1957, Little Richard hit the top of the charts in America with “Lucille”. His single reached number one in the R&B while reaching number 21 in the pop charts. The B-side was Send Me Some Lovin’.
The Beatles And Little Richard
The Beatles admired Little Richard during their early development. They also shared the stage together twice while Little Richard toured the UK. The first time was at Tower Ballroom in Wallasey, Merseyside on the 12th October, 1962. Then they appeared on the same bill at Liverpool’s Empire Theatre on the 28th of October. In November, 1962, they appeared on the same stage while in Hamburg at the Star-Club.
In their early development from The Quarrymen to The Beat Brothers and then The Beatles, the band would play cover songs regularly. They would often sing Little Richard songs as part of their live repertoire such as this track “Long Tall Sally“, “Ooh My Soul” and “Rip It Up” etc.
“We used to stand backstage at Hamburg’s Star-Club and watch Little Richard play. Or he used to sit and talk. He used to read from the Bible backstage and just to hear him talk we’d sit round and listen. It was Brian Epstein that brought him to Hamburg. I still love him and he’s one of the greatest.”
The Beatles recorded “Lucille” twice for the BBC. The first of these was on the 3rd September, 1963, in the Aeolian Hall in London. This recording went live on the airwaves two weeks later on the BBC Radio show, “Pop Go The Beatles”. This version is now on their 2003 album, “On Air – Live at the BBC Volume 2”.
The second recording was at the Playhouse Theatre in London on the 7th September for airing on the Saturday Club’s 5th Birthday Edition on the 5th October. This version is now available on The Beatles’ 1994 album, “Live At The BBC”.
The band also spontaneously played the song twice during a jamming session while recording the Get Back/Let It Be project in early 1969.
There is a bootleg version floating around of John Lennon and Paul McCartney singing this together at another jam session in 1974. This is the only occasion where Lennon and McCartney sang together after the Beatles split. That bootleg goes by the name of “A Toot And A Snore”.
The song became a standard, of course. Many other famous artists also recorded the song as well such as, AC/DC, Status Quo, The Doors, The Hollies, The Animals, Van Halen, Queen, Deep Purple, Sweet, The Everly Brothers, Bill Haley & His Comets and Otis Redding.