“Money (That’s What I Want)” is a cover song on the 1963 album, “With The Beatles”. It’s a rock and roll track from the Fab Four in their early development. Indeed, they also recorded it for their BBC Radio appearances as well.
Recorded: 18th July, 1963
Genre: Rock and roll
Record Label: Parlophone
Songwriters: Janie Bradford, Berry Gordy
Producer: George Martin
Engineer: Norman Smith
John Lennon: lead vocals, rhythm guitar, screaming, handclapping
Paul McCartney: bass, backing vocals, handclapping
George Harrison: lead guitar, backing vocals, handclapping
Ringo Starr: drums, handclapping
George Martin: double-tracked piano
Money (That’s What I Want)
Berry Gordy wrote “Money (That’s What I Want)” which became the first hit record for the Tamla label that he founded. Although Barrett Strong recorded the song in August, 1959, it didn’t hit the charts until June, 1960. Then, it reached number 2 in the American R&B chart and number 23 in the Billboard Top 100 charts.
Since its first appearance in the charts for the new Tamla – Motown enterprise, many other artists have covered the song, including The Beatles.
The title of the song is self-explanatory with the singer insisting that money is what he needs more than anything else.
The band began recording “Money (That’s What I Want)” for the “With The Beatles” album on the 18th July, 1963, in Studio Two of the EMI Studios, London, during the 7.00pm-10.45pm session.
The Beatles sang this song so many times in the early days and it was part of their live repertoire. Indeed, it was also part of their failed Decca Records demo tape in which John Lennon warbles a little. There is no official release of this version available although there are bootleg copies.
On the 1995 “Anthology 1” album there is a live version from the Karlaplansstudion in Stockholm, Sweden from the 24th October, 1963.
In the early 1960’s The Beatles would record radio shows for BBC Radio shows such as “From Us to You”. Indeed the version on their “On Air – Live At The BBC Volume 2” album has one of these recordings from that show on the 26th December, 1963. All in all, the Fab Four recorded “Money (That’s What I Want)” six times for BBC Radio shows including “Pop Goes The Beatles”. However, we are still awaiting further releases of those.