Monday, December 14, 2009

"Day Tripper"

"Day Tripper" is a song by English rock band The Beatles. Written by John Lennon and Paul McCartney, it was released as a double A-side single with "We Can Work It Out." Both songs were recorded during the sessions for the Rubber Soul album. The song topped the UK Singles Chart and peaked at number five on the Billboard Hot 100.


Under the pressure of needing a new single for the Christmas market, Lennon wrote most of the lyrics and the famous guitar hook, while McCartney helped with the verses. "Day-tripper" was a typical play on words by Lennon: "Day trippers are people who go on a day trip, right? Usually on a ferryboat or something. But [the song] was kind of . . . you're just a weekend hippie. Get it?" In the same interview Lennon said, "That's mine. Including the lick, the guitar break and the whole bit." In his 1970 interview with Rolling Stone, however, he used "Day Tripper" as one example of their collaboration, where one partner had the main idea but the other took up the cause and completed it. For his part, McCartney claimed it was very much a collaboration based on Lennon's original idea.

The line recorded as "she's a big teaser" was originally written as "she's a prick teaser." In Many Years From Now, McCartney admitted that "Day Tripper" was about drugs.

According to Ian MacDonald, the song "starts as a twelve-bar blues in E, which makes a feint at turning into a twelve-bar in the relative minor (i.e. the chorus) before doubling back to the expected B—another joke from a group which had clearly decided that wit was to be their new gimmick." Indeed, in 1966 McCartney said in Melody Maker that "Day Tripper" and "Drive My Car" (recorded three days prior) were "funny songs, songs with jokes in." McCartney provides the lead vocal and Lennon the harmony, in contrast to the Beatles' usual practice of a song's principal composer singing lead.


The song was recorded on 16 October 1965 at Abbey Road Studios. The Beatles recorded the basic rhythm track for "If I Needed Someone" after completing "Day Tripper."

The released master contains one of the most noticeable mistakes of any Beatles song, a drop out at 1:58 (1:49 in the version on Past Masters, Volume Two) in which the rhythm guitar part momentarily disappears; this may have been done to cover tape damage or some other recording mishap. This was later fixed on the 2000 compilation 1. Though not released on any album in the United Kingdom (until A Collection Of Beatles Oldies in 1966, and later in the 1962-1966, aka 'The Red Album', released in 1973) it was released in the US on the album Yesterday and Today.


* John Lennon – double-tracked lead vocal, backing vocal, rhythm/lead guitar
* Paul McCartney – double-tracked lead vocal, backing vocal, bass
* George Harrison – lead guitar
* Ringo Starr – drums

Cover versions

* The Jimi Hendrix Experience covered this song on BBC Sessions.

* Mae West covered the song on her 1966 album Way Out West. The album was re-released in 2008 on CD.

* Otis Redding's version is available on Complete & Unbelievable: The Otis Redding Dictionary of Soul.

* Sergio Mendes & Brasil '66 covered this song on Herb Alpert Presents

* Anne Murray covered this song on Highly Prized Possession

* Whitesnake covered this song on Trouble

* Electric Light Orchestra covered this song on the Long Beach live album

* James Taylor covered this song on Flag

* Cheap Trick covered this song on the live Found All The Parts EP

* Sham 69 covered this song on The Game

* Yellow Magic Orchestra covered this song on the live album Public Pressure

* Daniel Ash covered this song on Coming Down

* Gene Wooten covered this song on The Great Dobro Sessions

* Ocean Colour Scene covered this song with members of Oasis on a single

* tok tok tok covered this song on 50 Ways To Leave Your Lover

* Ian Hunter covered this song on Missing In Action

* The Punkles covered this song on Pistol

* Tommy Shaw covered this song on Butchering the Beatles: A Headbashing Tribute

* David Cook covered this song on Day Tripper (American Idol Studio Version)- Single

* Bad Brains covered this song in dub reggae format as a staple at live shows during the tour for I Against I.

* Type O Negative published a medley of this song on "World Coming Down"

* Lulu covered this song in 1967 on her album Love Loves to Love Lulu

* Nancy Sinatra covered the song on her album Boots

A-side: "We Can Work It Out"
Released: 3 December 1965
Format: 7"
Recorded: Abbey Road, 16 October 1965
Genre: Rock
Length: 2:46
Label: Parlophone (UK), Capitol (U.S.)
Writer(s): Lennon/McCartney
Producer: George Martin


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