I say in speeches that a plausible mission of artists
is to make people appreciate being alive at least a little bit.
I am then asked if I know of any artists who pulled that off.
I reply, "The
All You Need is Love
This track was originally written for the "Our World" broadcast in June
1967. The BBC billed it as a "live satellite link-up ... linking five
continents and bringing man face to face with mankind," and an estimated
200 million people tuned in from eighteen different countries. Brian
Epstein remembered it giving him many sleepless nights, "It got nearer
and nearer to the show and they still hadn't written anything. Then about
three weeks before the programme, they sat down to write and the record
was completed in 10 days."
The Beatles invited all their famous friends into the studio - Mick
Jagger, Keith Richards, Keith Moon, Eric Clapton, and all of their girlfriends
and wives, and they all danced the conga. Mick Jagger sat on the floor
underneath Paul's stool puffing on a joint in front of 200 million people.
And he was up in court the next day on drug charges!
There are some "hidden songs" in the track. The most obvious one is
the French national anthem in the beginning. But it's also got a bit
of Glenn Miller's "In the Mood," a bit of Bach's Brandenburg Concerto
No.2, "Greensleeves," and a quote from "She Loves You." Unbeknownst to
them, "In the Mood" was still in copyright, and they ended up getting
sued! They also insisted on trying out new instruments for it, even though
they didn't have a clue how to play them. John tried his hand on a harpsichord,
Paul played a double-bass, and George the violin.