Beatles – If I Needed Someone

This has that Rickenbacker sound. This song was written by George Harrison, who was influenced by The Byrds song “The Bells of Rhymney.” This one has always been a favorite of mine by George.

If I Needed Someone was one of four songs Capitol Records held off of the American release of Rubber Soul. US audiences hadn’t heard the song until June 20th, 1966, which was the date of release for the American album Yesterday…And Today.

If I Needed Someone was the only George Harrison composition to have been performed live by The Beatles. The other songs that featured George on vocals were covers but this was the only original song before they stopped touring.

The Hollies received an early recording of “If I Needed Someone.” They proceeded to quickly record their own rendition of the song and release it as their next British single on December 3rd, 1965, the exact day that The Beatles’ released Rubber Soul.

The Hollies took the song to #20 on the British charts, and it became the first George Harrison composition to make the charts.

Roger McGuinn: “George Harrison wrote that song after hearing the Byrds’ recording of “Bells of Rhymney.” He gave a copy of his new recording to Derek Taylor, the Beatles’ former press officer, who flew to Los Angeles and brought it to my house. He said George wanted me to know that he had written the song based on the rising and falling notes of my electric Rickenbacker 12-string guitar introduction. It was a great honor to have in some small way influenced our heroes the Beatles.”

From Songfacts

 It was not Ravi Shankar that introduced George to the wonderment of sitar, but Byrd traveler David Crosby shortly after Shawn Phillips had shown him the basic steps. In 1965 The Beatles toured the US and visited Ravi at World Pacific Studios where The Byrds had permanent residency. It was also here that Roger McGuinn’s Rickenbacker jingle jangle influenced Harrison’s “If I Needed Someone.” In turn, The Byrds were influenced by Harrison’s 12-string guitar work. 

If I Needed Someone

If I needed someone to love
You’re the one that I’d be thinking of
If I needed someone

If I had some more time to spend
Then I guess I’d be with you my friend
If I needed someone
Had you come some other day
Then it might not have been like this
But you see now I’m too much in love

Carve your number on my wall
And maybe you will get a call from me
If I needed someone
Ah, ah, ah, ah

If I had some more time to spend
Then I guess I’d be with you my friend
If I needed someone
Had you come some other day
Then it might not have been like this
But you see now I’m too much in love

Carve your number on my wall
And maybe you will get a call from me
If I needed someone
Ah, ah

Author: badfinger20 (Max)

Power Pop fan, Baseball fan, old movie and tv show fan... and a songwriter, bass and guitar player.

28 thoughts on “Beatles – If I Needed Someone”

  1. One of the things I love most about this song is the rising harmonies, particularly noticeable in the “Carve your numer on my wall …” line.

    “Rubber Soul” (the UK edition) is my favorite Beatles album for a good many reasons. This song is one of them.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Those harmonies do lift the song. You can’t go wrong with those middle period Beatle albums.

      What a time it would have been to be the record buying public at that time.

      Liked by 3 people

  2. While it’s a simple song, depending on the day, “If I Needed Somebody” is my favorite Beatles tune. I just can’t get enough of that magnificent Rickenbacker sound. Plus, it’s a quite catchy tune.

    There’s a great cover by Mr. Rickenbacker maestro himself.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. George always had his ears open, looking for what he could learn. He heard McGuinn’s approach to the 12-string guitar and learned what he could from it, and wrote what might be the quintessential Beatles song based on what he heard. He was just an incredible musician.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I didn’t know this was the only original song they did live…he did covers but not his own. I thought at least they would have done Don’t Bother Me…but they never did.
      There is a live version at Budakon that is good.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. This is the only one I like watching but yea they are done. I love it in the middle of Paperback Writer that George waves to draw attention away from the vocals.

        Like

    1. I think that is fair. John’s big contribution was Come Together…and Paul’s was the medley. His normal songs were rather weak…although I like Oh Darling. Those two George songs do frame the album…I’m not discounting the medley but yes the album needed those two songs.

      Liked by 1 person

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