"Things We Said Today" is a McCartney composition that he wrote on vacation aboard a yacht in May of 1964 with girlfriend Jane Asher, as well as Ringo Starr and his wife Maureen. The song was one of three written for the film A Hard Day's Night (The other two were "Can't Buy Me Love" and "And I Love Her.") It was recorded in advance of the film so that the song could be lip-synced, although the song was not included in the movie.
In the UK, "Things We Said Today" was the B side of "A Hard Day's Night." (In the United States, the B side to "A Hard day's Night was "I Should Have Known Better.") The song was released in the UK on the Parlophone LP of A Hard Day's Night. In the United States, it was released by Capital Records on Something New.
McCartney said of the song that, "I wrote this on acoustic. It was a slightly nostalgic thing already, a future nostalgia. We'll remember the things we said today sometime in the future, so the song projects itself into the future."
Musically, the song moves from ballad to rock via the change to a major key in the middle before returning to the melancholy of the minor key. Lennon hits a triple A note on the piano to reinforce the unique guitar strumming pattern.
"Things We Said Today" was recorded in three takes on June 2, 1964 at Abbey Road. The first take was a false start; the second take established the rhythm track; the third take included overdubs of the lead vocal, tambourine, and piano. The piano was originally intended to be dropped from the final mix but can be heard because of leakage into other microphones in the studio.
McCartney sings lead vocal and Lennon sings harmony. McCartney plays bass, Lennon acoustic guitar and piano, Harrison lead, and Starr drums. Some sources claim that Harrison did the harmony vocals both in the studio and during live performances.
Lennon was quoted as saying, "Good song."
"Things We Said Today" was included in the Beatles' set list for their North American tour in 1964 (the United States and Canada). The Beatles also performed the song twice on the BBC: July 14 and 17, 1964. The first performance was included on the Live at the BBC CD in 1994.
Covers of the song were recorded by Chet Atkins, Jackie DeShannon, Larry Carlton, Dwight Yoakam, and Mary McCaslin.
From 1989 on, Paul McCartney has included the song in his various world tours, such as Back in the U.S. and Out There tours.
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