The Beatles

Don't Let Me Down

Song Review by

"Don't Let Me Down" was one of the Beatles' most powerful love songs, used for the B-side of "Get Back," and fairly popular on its own merit, reaching the Top 40 under its own steam. The principal composer for this outing was lead singer John Lennon, who delivered one of his most soulful vocals ever for the track: a vocal that conveyed soulful ecstasy and desperation. As with other of Lennon's songs from the late '60s, "Don't Let Me Down" manages to harmoniously string together what sound like fragments that could have developed into two or three different songs. The tune's mainstay is its chorus, with its rich wailing harmonies, consisting of nothing but the title. The verses usually extol the delightful infatuation of a fresh romance, motivated by the initiation of Lennon's long relationship with his soon-to-be-wife Yoko Ono. However, there's also a verse that goes into a different melody and peppier rhythm. Despite its assertions that the narrator is in love for the first time with a love that will last forever, there's a slight underlying feeling of anxiety and uncertainty, as if the singer suspects it might be too good to be true. As on "Get Back" and some other songs from the group's early-1969 Let It Be sessions, its soulfulness is accented by the electric keyboards of a temporary fifth Beatle, Billy Preston.

Appears On

Year Artist/Album Label Time AllMusic Rating
Get Back 1969 Capitol
Hey Jude 1970 Capitol / Universal 3:37
1967-1970 1973 Apple Records 3:35
Past Masters, Vol. 2 1988 Capitol / EMI Records 3:34
Past Masters 1988 Apple Records / Capitol 3:35
Imagine: John Lennon [Original Soundtrack] 1988 Capitol 3:33
Get Back and 22 Other Songs 1991 Yellow Dog Records
No Image 1993 Big Music 2:12
CD Singles Collection 1993 Capitol 3:29
No Image 1994 Big Music 3:46
The Ultimate Box Set 1995 Capitol 3:34
No Image 199? VigoTone
Let It Be... Naked 2003 Capitol / EMI Records / Apple Records / EMI Music Distribution 3:19
The Beatles: Stereo Box Set 2009 Capitol 3:35
The Beatles USB 2009 Capitol / EMI 3:35
1962-1970 2010 EMI / Parlophone 3:35
The U.S. Albums 2014 Capitol / Universal 3:37