All You Need Is Love (Lennon/McCartney)

Home » SECOND TO NONE: The Beatles Song Index » All You Need Is Love (Lennon/McCartney)

All You Need Is Love (Lennon/McCartney)

John’s All You Need Is Love was the Beatles’ contribution to a world-wide television link entitled “Our World” – the first of its kind. His goal was to create a song which could be understood in any language. The Beatles’ performance was filled with balloons, celebrities, and signs in four languages which all read “all you need is love.” John’s song was declared the anthem for the Summer of Love, as it perfectly captured the mood that all one needed in life was love.

An all-star audience

Those present in the studio audience include Mick Jagger, Marianne Faithfull, Keith Richards, Eric Clapton, Pattie Harrison, Jane Asher, Paul’s brother Mike McCartney, Graham Nash, Hunter Davies, and Keith Moon.

Guest musicians

Former Manfred Mann saxophonist Mike Vickers conducted the orchestra. Take 58 was used as the broadcast version. During the first recording sessions (June 14), John played the harpsichord and George played violin.

Additional musicians include Sidney Sax (violin), Patrick Halling (violin), Eric Bowie (violin), John Ronayne (violin), Lionel Ross (cello), Jack Holmes (cello), Rex Morris (tenor sax), Don Honeywill (tenor sax), Evan Watkins (trombone), Harry Spain (trombone), Jack Emblow (accordion), Stanley Woods (trumpet and flugelhorn), and David Mason (piccolo trumpet).

Recording dates

  • June 14, 1967 (33 takes; basic track)
  • June 19, 1967 (vocal, drums, banjo, piano overdubs)
  • June 21, 1967 (mixing)
  • June 23, 1967 (orchestral overdubs onto June 19 master)
  • June 24, 1967 (overdubs)
  • June 25, 1967 (live bass, lead guitar, drums, and orchestra overdubs)
  • June 26, 1967 (opening snare drum roll overdub; mixing)
  • October 29, 1968 (stereo mixing for ‘Yellow Submarine’)

Personnel

  • John Lennon – lead and backing vocals, harpsichord, banjo
  • Paul McCartney – bass, double bass, backing vocals
  • George Harrison – lead guitar, violin, backing vocals
  • Ringo Starr – drums
  • Sidney Sax, Patrick Halling, Eric Bowie, John Ronayne – violins
  • Lionel Ross, Jack Holmes – cellos
  • Rex Morris, Don Honeywill – tenor saxophones
  • David Mason – trumpet
  • Stanley Woods – trumpet, flugelhorn
  • Evan Watkins, Harry Spain – trombones
  • Jack Emblow – accordion
  • Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Eric Clapton, Marianne Faithfull, Jane Asher, Pattie Boyd, Mike McGear, Keith Moon, Graham Nash, Hunter Davies, Gary Walker and others – background vocals

Release history

Chart performance

  • #1, July 19 – August 8, 1967 (3 weeks), Record Retailer (UK)
  • #1, August 19, 1967 (1 week), Billboard (US)