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MONDAY, November 28, 2022
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The Beatles’ debut single ‘Love Me Do’ was released on this day, 60 years ago.

The Beatles’ debut single ‘Love Me Do’ was released on this day, 60 years ago.

THURSDAY, October 06, 2022

60th anniversary of the song's release on 5 October 1962, Love Me Do reached number 17 in the UK and number one in the US two years later.

It was 60 years ago today (October 5th, 1962) that the Beatles' first single "Love Me Do"'/"P.S. I Love You" was released on EMI's Parlophone Records in England.

Although the song went on to top the U.S. charts two years later, its initial release in 1962 saw the Beatles score a sizable, but still minor, Top 20 hit with "Love Me Do" peaking at a respectable Number 17. The song, which was written by John Lennon and Paul McCartney was far from being one of their most recent collaborations, having been written along with the duo's first batch of songs from 1957 and 1958.

The history of the "Love Me Do" single is one of the more confusing sagas in the Beatles' history. After the group's June 6th, 1962 audition  in which a runthrough of "Love Me Do" was taped  producer George Martin, who was unhappy with then-drummer Pete Best's playing, told the Beatles' manager Brian Epstein that he would be using a session drummer for future work with the band. Despite that, when the Beatles with new drummer Ringo Starr  showed up to their first proper session on September 4th, a version of "Love Me Do" was recorded with Ringo behind the drums.

"Paul wrote the main structure of this when he was 16, or even earlier. I think I had something to do with the middle." Said John Lennon, 1972

Lennon spoke again of the song in an interview conducted shortly before his death.

‘Love Me Do’ is Paul’s song. He wrote it when he was a teenager. Let me think. I might have helped on the middle eight, but I couldn’t swear to it. I do know he had the song around, in Hamburg, even, way, way before we were songwriters." John Lennon, 1980

A member of Propstore staff, holds The Beatles Paul McCartney, John Lennon, George Harrison and Ringo Starr autographed "Life with The Beatles" booklet at a Propstore facility in Rickmansworth, Britain, September 27, 2022. REUTERS

Despite this, McCartney remembers ‘Love Me Do’ as a joint effort between the two of them, and that it came out of their early songwriting experiments.

"‘Love Me Do’ was completely co-written. It might have been my original idea but some of them really were 50-50s, and I think that one was. It was just Lennon and McCartney sitting down without either of us having a particularly original idea."

"We loved doing it, it was a very interesting thing to try and learn to do, to become songwriters. I think why we eventually got so strong was we wrote so much through our formative period. ‘Love Me Do’ was our first hit, which ironically is one of the two songs that we control, because when we first signed to EMI they had a publishing company called Ardmore and Beechwood which took the two songs, ‘Love Me Do’ and ‘PS I Love You’, and in doing a deal somewhere along the way we were able to get them back." Said Paul McCartney

The song was an early Lennon-McCartney composition from 1958, although it wasn’t recorded by the group for another four years.


Unsatisfied with Ringo's performance, for their September 11th session, Martin hired studio ace Andy White to drum on the two sides of the single  with Ringo being relegated to tambourine on "Love Me Do" and maracas on "P.S. I Love You." 

Despite George Martin's dissatisfaction with the first version of "Love Me Do," the original Ringo recording from September 4th was accidentally released as the original single version  and was the version that shot the song up the British hit parade. 

The mix-up wasn't noticed until the song had long peaked on the charts and was replaced by the "Andy White" version for the Please Please Me album in March 1963 and single's second UK pressing about a month later. 

The actual master and mixdown tapes of the "Ringo" version of "Love Me Do" have long been lost and the version that's now included in the Beatles' catalogue was taped from a collector's pristine mint version of the single.

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