Welcome to "Every Little Thing", a blog discussing all 214 songs released by the Beatles from 1962 to 1970....by Daniel Seth Levine.

Friday, October 9, 2009

#39: I Call Your Name

Written by: John Lennon & Paul McCartney Released: June 19, 1964 Appears on: Long Tall Sally (EP) & Past Masters, Vol. 1
Lead vocal: John

By 1964, John and Paul were becoming the British Leiber & Stoller, as any song that they didn't see fit to record themselves was given to another artist. You have to remember, just because a song wasn't good enough for the Beatles, doesn't mean it's a bad song. I mean, if "I Call Your Name" wasn't initially good enough for the Beatles, what was?
Essentially, this meant that John and Paul knew not every song they wrote could be "I Want To Hold Your Hand" or "Can't Buy Me Love", so the one's they knew weren't that great got tossed to Brian Epstein's other groups.
Billy J. Kramer & The Dakotas was one group that benefited greatly from the Beatles' cast-offs. Kramer made "Do You Want To Know A Secret?" a #2 hit after it saw release on Please Please Me, then he got his sole #1 with the "Bad To Me" b/w "I Call Your Name" 45. Following that, he had his last hit with "I'll Keep You Satisfied". His version of "I Call Your Name" is virtually identical to the way the Beatles performed it, save for a pretty nifty guitar solo. Still, John's vocals are great and I really think the Beatles version is much better. Then again, it just proves that the Beatles did everything better.
The Beatles ended up recording "I Call Your Name" for themselves when Capitol of the US came knocking on the door asking for some tunes to fill out The Beatles' Second Album with. They knew they were building an album on the covers of with the beatles and the "She Loves You" b/w "I'll Get You" 45 with "You Can't Do That" and "Thank You Girl" thrown in for good measure. This still left them two songs shy of the eleven song ultimatum for an American album (the Please Please Me tracks were still at VeeJay in the US and "Can't Buy Me Love" was exclusive to United Artists in the US), so they got George Martin on the line and the Beatles delivered "Long Tall Sally" and "I Call Your Name" on demand. As I noted in the "Long Tall Sally" entry, both remained US exclusives until the EP. This is also not the last time the Beatles were forced to do some quick tracks on demand for Capitol, though...

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