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100 Greatest Beatles Songs

89

'Good Day Sunshine'


the beatles 100 greatest songs
Evening Standard/Hulton Archive/Getty Images
89/100

Main Writer: McCartney
Recorded: June 8 and 9, 1966
Released: August 8, 1966
Not released as a single

"Good Day Sunshine" was McCartney's attempt, one hot summer afternoon, to write a song in the vein of the Lovin' Spoonful's idyllic, old-fashioned "Daydream." "That was our favorite record of theirs," McCartney said.

The song benefits from one of George Martin's ingenious studio devices: recording specific parts at different tape speeds. Though McCartney handles the piano chords on "Good Day Sunshine," Martin — an accomplished keyboardist who contributed to a number of Beatle recordings — is responsible for the slowed-down honky-tonk piano solo that follows the abbreviated second verse.

The result is a peppy break that sounds organic even though it's the product of tape-manipulation trickery. Martin's nuanced approach to recording technology — using it to serve the music, not as a gimmick — is arguably his biggest contribution to Revolver and everything that followed. "George Martin [was] quite experimental for who he was, a grown-up," said McCartney.

Appears On: Revolver

Related
The 500 Greatest Albums of All Time: 'Revolver'
The Lost Beatles Photos: Rare Shots From 1964-1966
Paul McCartney on 'Beatles 1,' Losing Linda and Being in New York on September 11th

 
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