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

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

#117: Bad Boy

Written by: Larry Williams
Released: December 10, 1966
Appears on: A Collection Of Beatles Oldies, But Goldies!, Beatles VI and Past Masters, Vol. 1
Lead vocal: John

"Bad Boy" is a relic. It was recorded back in May, 1965 during the HELP! sessions, nearly a year-and-a-half before its release in the UK. 
This Larry Williams cover (their third, after "Slow Down" and "Dizzy Miss Lizzie") first appeared in the US in June, 1965 on Beatles VI, which was made up as a stop-gap release before HELP!. The album was made up of Beatles For Sale left-overs, "Yes It Is", two originals recorded during the HELP! sessions ("Tell Me What You See" and "You Like Me Too Much") and two covers recorded specifically for the US market. "Dizzy Miss Lizzie" was released in the UK on HELP!, but "Bad Boy" was left to languish until Parlophone's own stop-gap release: A Collection Of Beatles Oldies, But Goldies! in December, 1966.  
...Oldies, But Goldies! was released because George Martin knew that they were not going to be able to finish even a single for Christmas 1966, so EMI put together a collection of singles that had never been on an LP before in the UK, two LP-exclusive favorites ("Yesterday" and "Michelle") and "Bad Boy" was thrown in to get those who already had everything to buy it. (Although, if I was around, that beautiful cover art probably would have been enough to get me.) 
As for the song itself, it's pretty routine when compared to other covers, particularly the other Larry Williams ones. It's a nice update of the original (which features horns and a backup singer going "He's a...BAD BOY!"...thankfully they got rid of that) and features the boys on their usual instruments.
Today, you can get the song on Past Masters as well as Beatles VI, which is included in the The Capitol Albums, Vol. 2 set. 

Next up, we get into the meat and potatoes of the Beatles' career, starting off with probably the most important single of all time.     

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