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The Beatles: Please Please Me single (50th Release Anniversary) – infographic

11 January, 2013

An infographic presenting facts about "Please Please Me", the second single of The Beatles

Click on the image to enlarge it

About two months ago we published an infographic about the 50th release anniversary of the first single of the Beatles, Love Me Do.

Today, it’s the 50th release anniversary of their second single, Please Please Me (with Ask Me Why on the flip side).

Some things the two singles (Love Me Do & Please Please Me) have in common include:

  • all four songs are Lennon-McCartney compositions
  • on the song of the A Side of each single the harmonica is present
  • both have love songs, all of the songs include the word “love” and “you” in their lyrics

And some things that are different include:

  • Love Me Do (single) has songs mainly composed by Paul McCartney; Please Please Me (single) songs have Lennon as the main contributor
  • while both Love Me Do / P.S. I love you include the word “love” in their titles there is no “love” word in the titles of Please Please Me / Ask Me Why

On the infographic there are some facts about the songs of the Please Please Me single, the recording, the musical instruments and the people involved.

Please Please Me was mainly written by John Lennon. The Beatles performed it to George Martin during the second recording session of Love Me Do (11 September 1962) for him to consider it as a song for their first single but at the time George Martin was not enthusiastic about it.

After some alterations George Martin accepted it and the Beatles recorded it (18 takes) together with Ask Me Why (6 takes) on 26 November 1962. The single entered the (UK) Record Retailer charts (TOP 100). It stayed on the charts for 18 weeks reaching No 2 at its hay day. It reached No 1 on other publications (NME, Melody Maker and Disc).

Twenty years after its release it entered the UK charts again (22 January  1983) and stayed there for 4 weeks reaching No 29 at its peak.

In the US the single was first released about a month after its UK release; it failed to enter the charts. However, on 3 January 1964 it was re-released with From Me To You on the flip side and it reached No 3 on the Billboard Hot 100 about two months later.

Sources:
Davies, H. (2009) The Beatles: The Authorised Biography, London: Ebury Press.
Trynka, P. (ed.) (2006) The Beatles: Ten years that shook the world, London: Dorling Kindersley.
Turner, S. (2010) A hard day’s write: the stories behind every Beatles’ song, London: Carlton Books.
The Official UK Charts Company Website: Please Please Me
Billboard Website: Week of March 14, 1964

Credits:
The lyrics ‘cloud’ was partially designed with Wordle

If you found this post interesting, why not have a look at other related to music infographics:
The Beatles: Love Me Do single (50th Release Anniversary) – infographic
50 years without George Formby (died on 6 March 1961)
The Real Group Discography: a timeline
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