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Many books have appeared over the years about the Beatles lyrics — about the words of those songs which the whole world knows and sings, and will sing for ever, as long as we have the breath to hum the tunes. But no one has ever tried to track down and publish the original versions of the classic songs — showing the words in the Beatles’ own handwriting, how they first wrote them, how they scribbled them down on pieces of paper or backs of envelopes, with all the crossings out and changes.
By revealing and publishing these original manuscripts for the first time we gain a unique insight into the creative process of Lennon and McCartney, how they did it, what they were thinking, how they changed their minds, and then came up with the words we now all know.
Such a book has never been published, firstly because of copyright reasons, with ownership divided between Michael Jackson and Sony, and secondly because no one has been able to track them all down. The author of the only authorised biography of The Beatles, Hunter Davies, has sought out nearly one hundred Beatles lyrics. His expert introduction describes the creativity of the greatest ever rock band — then he lists and illustrates each song, in chronological order, putting each song in context: what the Beatles were doing at the time, how and when they came to write and then record it, how the original version differs from the final one. The wonder is that almost every Beatles song has a great story behind it — whether it is ‘In My Life’, ‘For No One’, ‘Yesterday’, ‘Eleanor Rigby’, or ‘Yellow Submarine’.
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