- Published on 1962 – 1965
- Author: Lennon/McCartney
- Track 5 on “Past Masters Volume 1“
Beatles quotes about “I’ll Get You”
JOHN 1963: “The B-side of ‘She Loves You’ was meant to be the A-side.”
PAUL 1963: “If we write one song, then we can get going after that and get more ideas. We wrote ‘I’ll Get You,’ which is the B-side, first. And then ‘She Loves You’ came after that. You know– We got ideas from that. Then we recorded it.”
JOHN 1980: “That was Paul and me trying to write a song… and it didn’t work out.”
PAUL circa-1994: “It’s got an interesting chord in it– ‘It’s not easy/ To pre-TEND…’ That was nicked from a song called ‘All My Trials’ which is on an album I had by Joan Baez.”
About “I’ll Get You”
“I’ll Get You” was released as the B-side of their 1963 single “She Loves You“. The song was initially titled “Get You in the End”.
Typical of the Beatles’ vocal style of that period, John Lennon and Paul McCartney sing in unison for the majority of the track, allowing the few occasions when they do harmonise to stand out. But unlike most Beatles songs of the time there is no lead guitar break; the lead guitar is virtually reduced to a second rhythm guitar. The most prominent instruments in the track are McCartney’s “plumply rounded bass” and Lennon’s harmonica, which was overdubbed in a rush as session time ran out.
Beatles writer Bill Harry credits Lennon as the main composer, although McCartney claims it was a 50 / 50 collaboration. McCartney recalls using Lennon’s Menlove Avenue home as the writing base for the song. This was rare as Lennon’s Aunt Mimi, whom Lennon still lived with at the time, was disapproving of the Beatles.
The song’s opening line “Imagine I’m in love with you” was innovative, drawing the listener immediately into the story. McCartney would cite this as an early example of Lewis Carroll’s influence on Lennon’s lyrics—a ploy explored again in later compositions such as “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds“, “Strawberry Fields Forever” and Lennon’s solo “Imagine”. Reiterating its A-side’s catchphrase (“Yeah”), and assuming the heavy scouse accents conspicuous on their early records, Lennon and McCartney “drawl their way through a mock-naïve love lyric”.
- John Lennon – lead vocals, acoustic guitar, harmonica
- Paul McCartney – lead vocals, bass guitar
- George Harrison – electric guitar, harmony vocals
- Ringo Starr – drums