The Beatles’ 50 best songs

Roll up! The Fab Four's greatest songs chosen by famous fans

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Beatles For Sale album track, December 1964


PAUL DRAPER: The perfect pop record. One of my favourite Beatles moment ever. Johns vocals “Ooohhhhwwwhhooo” going into the second bridge- what an incredible moment. And it’s all over in about two and a half minutes.

JOHN SIMM: Perfect pop music – makes you smile!


A Hard Days Night album track, July 1964

PAMELA DES BARRES: When I first became a Beatlefreak, I was discovering my fem-wiles at the same time. There seemed to be sticky movement down below whenever I thought about my precious, long-legged Paul. I took to carrying a certain Beatle card around in a little gold box so I could peek at the curve of his Manhood in those shiny mohair pants. In A Hard Day’s Night, Paul sings this song, and during a side-view close-up, a slim string of saliva hangs from his cupid’s bow upper lip. Gasp. Today, some wise-tech-ass would zap Paul’s sexy, innocent dribble from the silver screen, but, thank God, back in ’64 I was able to clutch the arms of my seat in the darkened theatre in Reseda, California, waiting for a glimpse of that perfect, shining drop of Beatle spit. And I loved him.


TOMMY SCOTT: I love how simple it is. Maybe about five years ago I got Love Songs by The Beatles and I thought that was the best stuff. Dead mellow. I don’t like listening to mad stuff when I’m at home.

KYLE COOK: That song just stretches back in my memories as far as I can remember. Music has that ability to just kind of exist there in your subconscious. Such a beautiful, beautiful memory. The Beatles could create these amazing melodies, and that song and the lyrics and the European feeling that you get…it’s a very magical tune.

SHAUN WILLIAMSON: It’s got the most beautiful opening (sings it). It sets the mood for the song. It’s very optimistic, about being in love. Simplicity and perfection, really. I think he wrote it for Jane Asher.

PHIL MANZANERA: I was 13 when this came out, and it reminds me so much of being in Venezuela, the acoustic and Spanish guitars…to me, it has a little Latin feel about it. I associate it with the excitement of the early Beatles- a particular period which has a definite resonance- and of coming to England. London seemed to be all in black and white…a hip, sharp place with people in leather jackets and boots. It was just, “Wow!” It propelled me into being obsessed by everything to do with pop music.


Let It Be album track, May 1970

MARTIN ROSSITER: Paul, I gather, isn’t too found of this version. Who am I to question McCartney? But it sounds as if the surreptitiousness of the version is the thing that offends him the more than the version itself. It’s almost, in a way, the best example of the twisted genius of Phil Spector- get 473 choirs and 19 bass players and stick them in a room for 14 days and hold guns to people’s heads-allegedly. But out of that did come some sort of magic. It’s absolutely heartbreaking. It’s one of the few songs that leaves you on your front-room floor, naked and breathless.


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