29. 'From Me to You'
Recorded: March 5, 1963
Released: May 25, 1963 (Re-released: January 30, 1964)
6 weeks; No. 41 (B side)
"I asked them for another song as good as 'Please Please Me,'" George Martin said, "and they brought me one — 'From Me to You.' . . . There seemed to be a bottomless well of songs."
Martin wasn't the only one who loved the tune: It actually became the first Lennon-McCartney composition to hit the American Hot 100 when Del Shannon recorded a version after hearing it while sharing a bill with the Beatles in April 1963. (Lennon objected — he thought the cover would reduce the Beatles' chances of breaking the tune in the U.S.)
"From Me to You" featured Lennon playing harmonica in a Jimmy Reed-inspired blues style he had learned from Delbert McClinton, another American who was on the same bill with the Beatles in the early Sixties. "It's chiseled in stone now that I taught Lennon how to play harmonica," McClinton said. "John said, 'Show me something.' I was in a pretty unique position, because there just weren't a lot of people playing harmonica in popular music."
Appears On: Past Masters