The Beatles

P.S. I Love You

Composed by John Lennon / Paul McCartney

Song Review by

"P.S. I Love You," the B-side of the Beatles' first single ("Love Me Do"), was a sweetly sung, mid-paced rock ballad with a faint Latin flavor to the rhythm. Arguably it was superior to "Love Me Do"; certainly it was more melodically complex, particularly in the sections leading up to the end of the verses, with dramatically ascending chords rising in tandem with Paul McCartney's lead vocal. Also interesting was the section at the very beginning, in which the group employs unusual, almost jazzy backing chords that are not repeated elsewhere in the song, even when the same lyrics are repeated in subsequent portions. It's a small touch, but nevertheless an indication of the kind of daring structural and melodic ventures that would habitually infuse the Beatles' original material throughout their career. The tune itself slightly echoed Lennon-McCartney's infatuation with Buddy Holly, who also devised tunes that escaped the usual blues-based rock & roll progressions. Vocally, this song, more than almost any other in the Beatles' canon, reflects the influence Elvis Presley had upon the number's chief composer, lead singer Paul McCartney, particularly in the sections where he dips into the lower register, than suddenly twists into higher ones by elongating the words "you, you, you." The composition was relegated to the flip side, in part, because of the existence of an entirely different song with the same title. It was a promising indicator, however, and did eventually become a hit in its own right when it reached the American Top Ten (still as the B-side to "Love Me Do," which made number one) in 1964.

Appears On

Year Artist/Album Label Time AllMusic Rating
Please Please Me 1963 Apple Records / Capitol
The Early Beatles 1965 Capitol / Universal 2:05
No Image 1977 Capitol 2:06