Little Child is a song by the English rock group The Beatles from their album With the Beatles. It was written by John Lennon and Paul McCartney for Ringo Starr, but Starr was instead given "I Wanna Be Your Man" as his album song.
McCartney describes "Little Child" as being a "work song", or an "album filler". He admits to taking the line "I'm so sad and lonely" from the song "Whistle My Love" by British balladeer and actor Elton Hayes. The phrase "sad and lonely" also appears on "Act Naturally", which the Beatles covered (with Starr singing) for the album Help!
Recorded in three different sessions, the first was September 11, 1963, where the Beatles recorded two takes. They later came back to it the next day, where they recorded 16 takes, including overdubs of piano from McCartney, and harmonica from Lennon. They later returned to it on October 3, where they recorded three more takes. According to the stereo mix, the harmonica pans from left to right for the solo. Then it pans back from right to left after the solo. The song's solo follows a "twelve-bar blues format that does not appear in the rest of the [song]."
Music critic Richie Unterberger of Allmusic said the song "It might have been one of the less sophisticated and impressive tracks on the record, but it was still pretty good" and that "'Little Child' might not be a work of genius, but it's sheer rock'n'roll fun".
- John Lennon – lead vocals, harmonica
- Paul McCartney – lead vocals, bass guitar (1961 Hofner 500/1), piano
- George Harrison – backing vocals, lead guitar (1962 Gretsch 6122 Country Gentleman)
- Ringo Starr – drums
MacDonald said that the vocals were "credited to Lennon and McCartney, but more like the former double-tracked", though McCartney can be heard at the end singing "oh yeah" on his own, so the original credit is probably correct.
Cover versions Edit
Wreckless Eric covered the song with James Nicholls for Mojo's CD We're With the Beatles in 2013.