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CSX Classic Cuts

The Beatles on stage at the London Palladium during a performance in front of 2, 000 screaming fans. (Photo by Michael Webb/Getty Images)

WCSX Classic Cuts

The Beatles: “Hey Jude”

The Hook: Paul McCartney stands firm on the song’s arrangement, even at the cost of insulting “one of the greats.”

Album: Initially released as a non-album single, it became the title track of the 1970 compilation album on which it first appeared.

Year: 1968

Writers: John Lennon and Paul McCartney

Stats: Spent nine weeks at number-one on the Billboard Hot 100, the longest run for any Beatles single.

The Background: Paul McCartney explains how “Hey Jude” was an example of the creative tension that could sometimes occur within The Beatles, particularly later in their career.

Paul McCartney on how late in The Beatles career there was creative tension even when recording a classic song like “Hey Jude.” OC:…our stuff. :23

“On ‘Hey Jude,’ I told George not to play guitar. ‘Cause he wanted to play ‘Hey Jude (dah-dah-dah-dah) Don’t make it bad (dah-dah-dah-dah) Take a sad song (dah-dah-dah)’ – those echoing phrases. And I really didn’t see it like that. And it was a bit of a number for me to have to dare to tell George Harrison – one of the greats, I think – to not play. It was like an insult, almost. That was how we did a lot of our stuff.”