"You've Got to Hide Your Love Away" is a song by The Beatles. It was written by John Lennon and credited to Lennon/McCartney, and first appeared on the album Help! in August 1965. The song also appeared on side three of the 1973 compilation 1962–1966.
Performance in the film
In the film Help!, at the opening of the song, the head of the cult, Clang (Leo McKern), appears from underneath a manhole cover in the middle of Ailsa Avenue, London, where parts of the film were shot. He stays there for the whole song, which the Beatles play in John Lennon's fourth of the Beatles' shared flat. They are watched by Ahme (Eleanor Bron), and at the end of the song, George passes out after Ahme produces a giant needle for Ringo, who is wearing the ring the cult is seeking.
Influence of Bob Dylan
At the time of the release of Help!, Lennon was infatuated with the American singer Bob Dylan. Dylan's 1964 song "I Don't Believe You [She Acts Like We Have Never Met]" opens in strikingly similar fashion: "I can't understand, she let go of my hand, and left me here facing the wall". Lennon seems to mimic Dylan's gruff vocal style, and uses a Dylanesque, all-acoustic accompaniment with very little percussion. The song "is just basically John doing Dylan", McCartney later said.
Other song information
The song, according to musician/singer Tom Robinson, is a reference to Brian Epstein, the group's manager, who was homosexual (homosexuality was a criminal offense in Britain at the time).
When Lennon made a mistake during the recording (he sang "two foot small" instead of "two foot tall"), he is reported to have said: "Let's leave that in, actually. All those pseuds will really love it."
At the time of recording, "You've Got To Hide Your Love Away" was the first Beatles song since "Love Me Do" to feature an outside musician. John Scott recorded a tenor flute as The Beatles taped their parts, before overdubbing an additional alto flute part.
Other studio tracks
There is an alternative take included on Anthology II. Before the song proper begins, a montage of chatter associated with several other takes is presented. In this sequence, Lennon counts off the song, then stops to readjust his guitar pickup. After a glass shatters, Lennon says "Paul's broken a glass, broken a glass. Paul's broken a glass. A glass, a glass he's broke today."
* John Lennon — lead vocal, Twelve string guitar
* Paul McCartney — Bass guitar
* George Harrison — acoustic guitar
* Ringo Starr — tambourine, maracas
* John Scott — flutes
Artists who have covered this song include the following, listed alphabetically:
* The Beach Boys, on their Beach Boys' Party! album, with the lead vocal by Dennis Wilson
* Joe Cocker
* Chris Cornell
* Elvis Costello
* Government Mule
* Howie Day, with Dispatch
* Daniel Johnston, live shows
* The Kentucky Headhunters
* Oasis, as a B-side
* Perry Rose
* Tim Rose
* The Silkie, produced by The Beatles
* The Subways
* U2 has performed a snippet of the song during various tours, usually towards the end of the song, "Bad".
* Eddie Vedder, on the movie soundtrack of I Am Sam, also popular during Pearl Jam concerts
* Pearl Jam
* Julieta Venegas
Released: 6 August 1965
Recorded: Abbey Road Studios, 18 February 1965
Genre: Folk rock
Label: Parlophone, Capitol, EMI
Producer: George Martin