Beatles release “Twist and Shout” to the US public

Beatles release “Twist and Shout” to the US public

On this day in 1964, The Beatles released one of their many early successes, “Twist and Shout” to the US public.

A cover of the 1961 song by Phil Medley and Bert Russell, the song shot to top 10 positions on music lists worldwide, and only failed to reach number one in US lists because the other top spots were already occupied by other Beatles hits.

Released on their first album, Please Please Me, the song would be the highest charting Beatles song to have no writing or co-writing credits to any of the bands members. The song maintains its high regard due to the power of the vocal track by Lennon, described as raucous and dynamic. Interestingly, he was known to have been suffering from a cold and producer George Martin deliberately left the song until the end of the recording session as he knew Lennon’s voice would suffer and that there would likely only be opportunity for one take. Lennon drank milk and sucked cough drops in an attempt to soother his throat, unsuccessfully as his coughing is still audible on the album. He later said that his voice had been slow to recover and his throat had felt like sandpaper afterwards.

The song recharted in 1986 after being featured in popular film Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. The combination of the two periods in the charts amounted in the song becoming the longest-running top 40 hit for the Beatles, at 23 weeks and making it the second most successful Beatles single in history after “Hey Jude”.

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