Most of this album
was actually recorded in one marathon session at Abbey Road
. The session took place over the course of twelve hours. (In later years, they would record a single song in this amount of time). They recorded nearly all of the songs during this session, including Twist and Shout
, a song that can be very trying on the vocal chords
. This particular session was on February 11, 1963
At this time in The Beatles' career, John sang nearly all the songs. He had been drinking warm milk to try to make his voice feel better before they head into the recording session for the last song. They hadn't previously known what they were going to do going into this song. They decided to chose a song that always got the crowd going at live shows, Twist and Shout. This song was particularly taxing on John's poor voice. But, he managed to sing the song in one raucous take, that was as good as he had ever sung the song. According to Revolution in The Head, this prompted Paul McCartney to yell "Hey!" at the end. He tried to do another take anyway, but simply couldn't, and so this version was put on the album.
Another song on this album with an interesting recording history is the title track. Many have heard that when they first finished, George Martin got on the intercom into the studio and said, "Congratulations gentlemen, you've just made your first number one." This prediction proved true. But, another interesting story (also gleaned from Revolution in the Head) is what John's Aunt Mimi said about this song. After she heard Love Me Do, she said that he was mistaken if he thought the track would make him any money. About Please Please Me, however, saying, "That's more like it. That should do well."
A few random facts. Since at this point, George had not yet started to write songs, he was given one to sing, Do You Want to Know a Secret. The Ringo song on this album was Boys, something that always embarassed him. Most of the songs from the album were released in America on Introducing the Beatles. Finally, the song Hold Me Tight was recorded near the beginning of the 12 hour session, but didn't end up appearing until With The Beatles, released later that year. John and Paul never particularly liked it.
Most of my information came from Revolution in the Head, by Ian MacDonald.