Every Little Thing is a song written by Paul McCartney (credited to Lennon/McCartney) and performed by The Beatles on their 1964 UK album Beatles for Sale. In the US, Capitol released it as the last track on Beatles VI.
McCartney wrote the song in a music room at the home of Jane Asher where he was living at the time. He had hopes it would be released as a single, but it "didn't have quite what was required", and was released on Beatles for Sale instead.
The song is somewhat unusual for Lennon/McCartney in that the lead singer, John Lennon, was not the primary composer. McCartney sings harmony, although one can hear him better in the refrain. The song's composer is not in question: McCartney claimed the song as described above, and Lennon said in an interview with Playboy that McCartney wrote it.
The released version was recorded with 4 takes at Abbey Road Studios on 29 September 1964, and then five more on 30 September. The Beatles were enjoying themselves on the second night; take six was aborted due to McCartney burping his vocals, and take seven was finished but ended in loud laughter. It is one of the few early Beatles songs to feature an instrument that did not usually appear on rock 'n roll songs: Ringo Starr plays the timpani on the track to add punctuating one-two flourishes to the refrains. This appeared for the first time on the ninth take, along with a guitar intro and piano piece.
Music critic Ian MacDonald praised the song's "emotional depth" and used this song and others as counter-arguments to the caricature of McCartney as an emotional lightweight. Richie Unterberger of Allmusic also praised the song and its "infectious chorus".
- John Lennon - lead vocals, lead guitar (1964 Rickenbacker 325/12)
- Paul McCartney – bass guitar (1963 Hofner 500/1), harmony vocals
- George Harrison – acoustic rhythm guitar (1962 Gibson J-160E)
- Ringo Starr - drums, timpani
- George Martin - piano, producer
- Norman Smith - engineer
- In 1969, Yes covered this song on their self-titled debut album. Their cover turned the song into a wall of sound with several tempo and key changes and an extended jam opening.
- In 1986, Lou Ann Barton did a version on her EP Forbidden Tones.
- In 2003, Peter Lipa included this song and 15 other Lennon/McCartney songs on his album Beatles in Blue(s)
- In 2004, Martin Gordon released a cover on The Joy of More Hogwash.
- Lewisohn, Mark (1988). The Beatles Recording Sessions
. New York: Harmony Books. ISBN 0-517-57066-1.
- MacDonald, Ian (2005). Revolution in the Head: The Beatles' Records and the Sixties
(Second Revised ed.). London: Pimlico (Rand). ISBN 1-844-13828-3.
- Miles, Barry (1997). Paul McCartney: Many Years From Now
. New York: Henry Holt and Company. ISBN 0-8050-5249-6.
- Sheff, David (2000). All We Are Saying: The Last Major Interview with John Lennon and Yoko Ono
- Unterberger, Richie (2009). "Review of "Every Little Thing"". allmusic. http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&sql=33:jbfwxvqjldje. Retrieved on 2009-09-11.