Might the young, leather-clad Sir Paul have been singing 'I Remember You' when this photograph was taken?
Well, it's been too long between posts here, so let's get cracking. Besides the many rockers that The Beatles kicked out during their Hamburg and Cavern days, they also included many slow tunes and middle of the road pop tunes in their sets. A virtual walking jukebox as one author noted years ago (maybe Phillip Norman in Shout!).
One tune such that the band covered was 'I Remember You', originally recorded and perfomed by Frank Ifield, which was apparently a hit in the British charts of 1962. I think I read somewhere that it was the first million-selling record by a British artist, though I wouldn't swear to it. As usual, just click on the highlighted link above to hear the original version of the song via the wonderfully magical YouTube. Anyway, a very Slim Whitman-esque little number!
Now, to hear The Beatles' treatment of the same number, click HERE to hear a less-than-stellar recording of Sir Paul and the boys performing the same tune at the famous Star Club in Hamburg during December 1962. I like the slightly faster tempo here, though that could be the result of bad recording technology, or the fact that the guys in the band were probably slightly drunk, or stoned out of their gourds on Preludin. I've read that John Lennon, in particular, indulged heavily during the last visits to Hamburg in 1962, which might explain the out-of-tune harmonica. I suspect he was having difficulty adjusting to (sudden) married life and the arrival of a child, and so booze, pills, and women acted as a distraction of sorts.
Anyway, what brought 'I Remember You' to mind this morning is that my own band THE INDRAS is currently practicing this song, and we'll give it a whirl live for the first time in our third set this Saturday evening. The specialty of the band is playing the wild, quirky music of the Hamburg and Cavern-era Beatles. . . long before they were molded into the cute moptops that conquered the known world by the moderating hand of Brian Epstein. If you are at all interested, visit THE INDRAS' website by clicking on the highlighted link. You can learn more about the band there, hear several of our cover tunes, and find links to our Facebook and Myspace pages. Enjoy!