100 Greatest Beatles Songs

99

'Yes It Is'

the beatles 100 greatest songs
Max Scheler - K & K/Redferns/Getty Images

Main Writer: Lennon
Recorded: February 16, 1965
Released: April 19, 1965
4 weeks; No. 46 (B side)

As he was with much of his early work, Lennon was dismissive of "Yes It Is"; he said it was "me trying a rewrite of 'This Boy,' but it didn't work." But "Yes It Is" features some of the most intricate vocals of any Beatles song; like "This Boy," it was an attempt to mimic the three-part harmonies of Smokey Robinson and the Miracles. It took Lennon, McCartney and Harrison multiple takes to nail the song's delicate mix of voices.

In the lyrics, Lennon showed the honesty that would mark his songwriting after 1965: His "pride" is the reason he can let go of a lost love. McCartney liked "Yes It Is": "[It's] a very fine song of John's, a ballad, unusual for him," he said. "I was there writing it with John, but it was his inspiration." Harrison used an early effects pedal to add gentle sobs of pedal-steel-like guitar, giving it a subtle Nashville spin.

Appears On: Past Masters

Related:
The 100 Greatest Artists of All Time: The Beatles
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Ringo Starr, Confident and Sober: Rolling Stone's 1992 Feature Story

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