The subject of the Beatles’ song “Dear Prudence” is Prudence Farrow, the younger sister of actress Mia Farrow. Prudence was present when the Beatles visited Maharishi Mahesh Yogi in Rishikesh, India in early 1968. Instead of joining the activities with the others, she primarily stayed in seclusion during long periods of meditation in her room.
The others at the retreat wanted her to join them. John Lennon, who thought she might be depressed, wrote the song to invite her to “come out to play”. Years later, Prudence explained that she was just trying to take Transcendental Meditation seriously. In Mojo magazine, she said: “They were trying to be cheerful, but I wished they’d go away. I don’t think they realized what the training was all about.”
Prudence Farrow, along with fellow retreat guest Mike Love of the Beach Boys, became teachers of Transcendental Meditation (TM).
“Dear Prudence” is the second track on the 1968 double-disc album The Beatles (better known as “The White Album”).
A Hard Day’s Night is the only Beatles album where all of the songs were written by John Lennon and Paul McCartney. It is also the first Beatles album to contain only original compositions, and no cover songs. A Hard Day’s Night was released on July 10, 1964, as the soundtrack to the Beatles’ film of the same name.
Most of the band’s earlier albums contain at least a few covers, and most of their albums have at least one George Harrison composition, but A Hard Day’s Night had neither. Harrison does get to sing lead vocals on the Lennon/McCartney penned “I’m Happy Just to Dance with You”.
A Hard Day’s Night is one of three Beatles albums that do not feature Ringo Starr on vocals on at least one track (Magical Mystery Tour and Let It Be are the others). But Starr is credited with the accidental creation of the movie/album’s title. During an interview with Playboy magazine in 1980, John Lennon said: “I was going home in the car and Dick Lester [director of the movie] suggested the title, ‘Hard Day’s Night’ from something Ringo had said. I had used it in ‘In His Own Write’, but it was an off-the-cuff remark by Ringo. You know, one of those malapropisms. A Ringo-ism, where he said it not to be funny… just said it. So Dick Lester said, ‘We are going to use that title.'”
“Something” was the first George Harrison composition to be featured as an A-side of a Beatles single. The B-side was “Come Together” (credited to Lennon/McCartney). Both songs were recorded and released in 1969, and appear as the first two tracks on the Abbey Road album.
Frank Sinatra was particularly fond of “Something;” declaring it “the greatest love song ever written”. It became a regular part of his repertoire and he sang it hundreds of times during his concerts. Sinatra mistakenly called “Something” his all-time favorite Lennon/McCartney song!
“Something” was the only George Harrison penned song to top the American charts while he was a member of The Beatles. Both John Lennon and Paul McCartney, the principal songwritings of the band, praised “Something” as one of the best songs Harrison had written.
“Flying”, from the 1967 release Magical Mystery Tour, was the first song credited as being written by all four members of The Beatles. The writing credit is attributed to “Lennon/McCartney/Harrison/Starr”. It’s a simple 12-bar blues chord progression instrumental track, though it does include some chanting.
It was rare for The Beatles to record instrumentals, and it was also rare for a song to be credited to all four members of the band.
“Flying” was originally titled “Aerial Tour Instrumental”.