Released: July 10, 1964
Appears on: A Hard Day's Night
Lead vocal: John (& Paul)
I have quickly realized that writing about the first great Beatle album, A Hard Day's Night, is really tricky. Every song - one right after the other - is a masterpiece. It makes writing about them boring...not that there's anything wrong with that.
"If I Fell" is the sensitive side of John poking his head in again. This is simply one of the best songs that show, again (and again, saying this makes me sound like a broken record), just how versatile the Beatles are. They could switch from the ballads to the rockers without taking a breather.
The song is about a guy who wants to fall in love with a girl, but worries that she may hurt him in the end. He asks for her permission, since he's got to be sure that she's true to him. Of course, the other problem is that he's already got another girl, so there's a double-standard in this relationship, I guess. In the movie, the song plays the absolutely hilarious part as Ringo's pick-me-up song after a stage hand fiddles with his drums. ("Aren't you being rather arbitrary?" "That's right retreat behind a smoke screen of bourgeois clichés. I don't go round messing about with your ear-phones, do I?")
Capitol used the song as the B-Side to its "And I Love Her" 45, which reached #12 on Billboard. Meanwhile in Britain, EMI pressed a limited number of copies of an "If I Fell" b/w "Tell Me Why" 45 that was popular on the continent, although it did not chart.