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The Beatles Lyrics

The Beatles Lyrics

Many books have appeared over the years about the Beatles lyrics — about the words of those songs which the whole world knows and sings, and will sing for ever, as long as we have the breath to hum the tunes. But no one has ever tried to track down and publish the original versions of the classic songs — showing the words in the Beatles’ own handwriting, how they first wrote them, how they scribbled them down on pieces of paper or backs of envelopes, with all the crossings out and changes.

By revealing and publishing these original manuscripts for the first time we gain a unique insight into the creative process of Lennon and McCartney, how they did it, what they were thinking, how they changed their minds, and then came up with the words we now all know.

Such a book has never been published, firstly because of copyright reasons, with ownership divided between Michael Jackson and Sony, and secondly because no one has been able to track them all down. The author of the only authorised biography of The Beatles, Hunter Davies, has sought out nearly one hundred Beatles lyrics. His expert introduction describes the creativity of the greatest ever rock band — then he lists and illustrates each song, in chronological order, putting each song in context: what the Beatles were doing at the time, how and when they came to write and then record it, how the original version differs from the final one. The wonder is that almost every Beatles song has a great story behind it — whether it is ‘In My Life’, ‘For No One’, ‘Yesterday’, ‘Eleanor Rigby’, or ‘Yellow Submarine’.
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Genre: The Arts / Music / Individual Composers & Musicians, Specific Bands & Groups

On Sale: 25th September 2014

Price: £8.99

ISBN-13: 9780297608134

Reviews

They were just scraps of paper set for a cleaner's furnace - but now The Beatles' lyric sheets are precious jewels that reveal the secret history of the world's greatest band... beneath the scrawls and corssings-out lies a shadow history of The Beatles
LIVERPOOL ECHO
Painstakingly researched and skilfully laid out over 350 engrossing pages, Davies gives us an incredible insight into the remarkable creative process of the band, and tells the story of the Beatles' lives through their work
Colm O'Regan, HOT PRESS
This is not just one for the Beatlemaniacs and it is liberally illustrated with lyrics as they were originally written on table napkins, notepads, or on the back of a birthday card
RTE GUIDE
No Lennon/McCartney obsessive should be without Hunter Davies' The Beatles Lyrics
Olivia Cole, GQ Magazine
This delightful book will appeal to the millions of Beatles fans around the world who will surely enjoy reliving these iconic songs and learning something of their history
SIXTYPLUSSURFERS
He wrote the first comprehensive biography of The Beatles and now, in The Beatles Lyrics, Hunter Davies returns to examine each of the band's songs in forensic details, offering insights into the creative process and putting the songs in their social and personal context
CHOICE
You may never read a more comprehensive, unpretentious account of the creative processes behind a band's body of lyrics. It seems fitting that band should be The Beatles... The book runs chronologically from A to Z through every self-penned song the Beatles recorded in their eight action-packed years together. With all those original handwritten manuscripts, it's a must buy for die-hard Beatles fans and, no doubt, many calligraphers too
Joe Dermody, IRISH EXAMINER
Fascinating facsimiles of scribbled lyric notes jotted onto scraps of paper... afford insights into the development from the germ of an idea to a finished song
THE INDEPENDENT 'Books of the Year'
Even fans who think they know it all already will treasure this forensic exploration of the Beatles' songs...a handsome coffee-table book by Hunter Davies that manages to shed new light on the creative process behind such songs as Eleanor Rigby, Across the Universe and Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds...a treasure of a book, a forensic, song-by-song exploration of the band's creative process
Paul Howard, THE IRISH TIMES
Davies has tracked down and reproduced more than 100 of the Beatles' original handwritten manuscripts for their songs, nearly all of which are reproduced for the first time in this handsome coffee-table tome. Each song is given its context: what the band were doing at the time, how and when they came to write and record it, how the original version differs from the final one. A pretty essential addition to the library/bathroom of any serious Beatles fan
IRISH NEWS
What's amazing is that these songs were so often scribbled down on whatever bits of paper were at hand - pages from notebooks, hotel stationery, backs of envelopes - and it's fascinating to see them with their hasty revisions, crossings out, lines being rewritten, ideas rethought even before they are fully complete, almost as if The Beatles can't keep up with their own creative momentum, colourful doodles and stoned illustrations accompanying some of them
Allan Jones, UNCUT
A fascinating look at how these classics came into being as the manuscripts show how lines were altered and whole verses dumped
THE SUN
A forensic song-by-song exploration of the band's writing process... If you're a songwriter, the song manuscripts along are fascinating, and if you're a Beatles fan, the info here can't help but give you a fresh insight into their music
GUITARIST
[Davies] has managed to track down handwritten versions for 100 of the band's 182 lyrics, and it's undeniably fascinating to observe these scribbled seeds, particularly when they contain alterations, crossings-out and abandoned verses... The other main attraction of the book is Davies' unrivalled access to the group. As the only authorised Beatles biographer during the band's existence, he spent time observing Lennon and McCartney as they wrote songs, and his vivid account of the pair holding court amongst friends in the latter's music room... is just one of several fascinating behind-the-scenes moments
Andy Gill, THE INDEPENDENT