What Goes On
What Goes On: The Beatles Anomalies List

Anomalies H

Happiness Is A Warm Gun

    Chewing/mouth noises, centre.

    The engineer mixing this song brought up a track too quickly. Originally John sang the "I need a fix" section twice, but the first was supposed to be left out in the release (replaced by a guitar). The end of the first "down" ended up on the master by accident. Not present in mono mixes.

    High pitched titter from the "female" backing voices. Caught unawares by an early drop-in? This has been attributed to John saying "shoot" or "sh*t".

    "When I Hold You..."
    The tempo changes into something like 6/8 here, but Ringo continues in 4/4. Not sure how this happened.

Two possibilities - they were doing something clever with arrangements by overlaying 2 rhythms. Or, at the time the drums were recorded, they intended it to be in 4/4 and changed their minds later. It's clever.

There's a Queen song "The Miracle" where the song ends and goes into a guitar/bass/drums solo fade out, and a piece fades in over this at a different tempo and knits at key points (especially the start and end) so that it transits to a slower tempo without you really noticing.

In the light of the "Mother superior" bit, which has an odd beat pattern of 3 6 3 7 3 6 3 7 3 6 3 7 beats, it may be intentional.

Max Mismetti mentions that John did this sort of thing on a few occasions. Examples include Anthology ("Remember" - starts singing at an odd time measure), also Across The Universe (various takes, starting in odd places, running into verses without the expected pause).

2:21 Listen!
    Print-through of the word "Gun" a split second before you hear it at full volume.

Hello Goodbye

    Handclaps, which seem to mark out the start and end of the solo area.

    Right channel - a clicky sound as John and George's voices are punched in, possibly from the echo unit.

    Right channel - someone hits something, viz. "I can stay 'til it's time to go [BANG clatter]". Also background hiss reduces as the vocals are taken away here. Throughout 1:54-2:05, headphone leakage of other instruments increases with the new vocal tracks being added.


    Double tracking timing error on word "way".

    Shout, just before backing vocal sings "find", easier to hear on right channel of the stereo version.

The mono version has the intro spliced on. The vocals differ between the mono and stereo mixes.

Danny Caccavo adds this

Here's more about the mono mix.

Whenever you hear the guitar run, there's an edit which cuts out the band hangover (cymbals) and the thumping on John's acoustic guitar. "Won't you (edit) please, please help (edit) me". On the second edit, the band returns, and the guitar run stops suddenly.

These edits are not (unfortunately) on the stereo mix. They are quite effective on the mono.

Also at the end on the mono mix, there are three "Help Me"'s. Note that the second one is "Help" (Paul/George) and "Me" (John). On the stereo, John's voice is double tracked, so you lose the back and forth effect (highlighted in the film "Help" - note how it is edited back and forth)

Glenn Koury also notes

The anomaly is in the tempo of one phrase in the first verse. The line is "Now I find I'VE CHANGED MY MIND". In the single version of the song, the tempo of the vocal phrase I'VE CHANGED MY MIND is evenly spaced, with MIND coming right at the downbeat (actually, a 16th beat before). In the album version, the phrase is double-timed, with MIND arriving on the upbeat. Also, in the album version, the phrase is repeated at the END of the song, and there, it is the slower, evenly-paced tempo like the single version (and thus inconsistent with the same line at the beginning of the album).

Helter Skelter

    On the first note of the riff (after the guitar slide down) there is a definite fault in the track that sounds like a CD-copying error. Looking closely there are a bunch of "noisy" samples in the left track only, followed by a bunch in the right track. This has been reported from a couple of people, and would seem to be some kind of digital mastering error.

    Right channel, you can hear two faint taps that count in the vocal.

0:03, 0:05
    Stray noise, twice the same sound, may be guitar, may be vocal.

    Paul laughs the "Do you ..." (probably still got the giggles from the previous "Yeah yeah yeah ahaha ...")

    The reverb on Paul's voice drops out completely, his voice sounds much smaller for this one line.

    Glasses or a bottle rattles for about two seconds, right channel.

    Again reverb disappears on Paul's voice for one line.

1:31, 1:34, 1:38-1:46
    Squeaks, sounds like a child's toy. It may be a manipulated vocal.

    Paul's vocal moves around the stereo image, panning slightly left.

    Again the reverb disappears on Paul's voice for one line. Were these punch-ins to fix an errant "Helter Skelter", and no reverb was applied (to make editing in and out easier) ?

    Paul sings "Yes she is, coming down fast" and then (closer to the mic at 2:49) "Can you hear me speaking? Whoooo".

2:57-3:09 Listen!
    Paul says "Listen, shall we hear that, see if the [sings] eeee's onnn...", and then says (3:04) "Are you coming, son? I saw you do that you little bugger... (3:08) Put yer bloody hands on your head, c'mon".

Hard to hear, again OOPS helps to remove the loud guitar part that masks this. There's also quite a bit of clicking and scratching in the track here.

The famous "blistery shout" (Listen!) is preceded by John's voice asking "How's that?". The shout itself is from Ringo. This section is missing from mono mixes.

Popular folklore says that this shout is because Ringo had drummed for 27 minutes on this take, and that what we hear on the White Album is a condensed version. It seems this is not quite true.

JWB writes to tell me

The 27 minute take was a completely different version (another take of this version is on Anthology 3) that was never released. The White Album version was only about 5 minutes but they did several takes.

The 27 min take (takes 1-3) were July 1968, the remake session was September 1968 (takes 4-21). Take 21 is the version found on the White Album. I guess the blisters were from 18 takes of 3-4 minutes each. Take 21 was considered best and work progressed from there.

Here Comes The Sun

    Previously listed as "George hits the guitar body to mark the unplayed beats, a la Help!"

Stephen Moss suggests

The time tapping noted here is more likely George's foot. Listen to how closely that guitar is mic'd. Were George to beat out the pauses on the guitar body, it'd be much louder.

Tony Cox suggests

I think the "tapping" at the end of the intro to Here Comes The Sun is down to perhaps a George Martin oversight (!!) rather than GH. I think the tapping comes from a metronome which can be barely heard during the intro. This gets louder at the end of the solo when the compressor on the guitar mic starts to increase its gain as the last few notes played are fading away.

    I'm fairly sure the start of the strings section is too abrupt, and that this is an edit/punch in.

    Soft, then louder clunks against the body of the guitar. (Left channel).

    The vocal comes out as "It seels like years since it's been clear". Previous verses are "feels/here", "seems/here", and there seems to be some doubt as to what word came there!

Here There And Everywhere

    Left channel, there is an edit between the intro piece and "Here", the tape drop out gives this away.

    Left channel, a finger snap where one was not supposed to be!

    Listening to the right channel only, the phrase "changing / my life" has two different sounds. Edit between two takes?

    Serious fret squeak, right channel.

    At the end of guitar section, under the word "her", is a 'fwip' in the right channel.

1:10,1:45 Listen!
    Between the words "everywhere" and "knowing that love..." is an audible 'fwip' of a punch-in, this time on the left channel.

    Left voice seems to fade out during "care" and return a few words later.

    Finger clicking drops out for exactly one beat.

    Guitar goes to wrong beat - it had been playing chopped chords on beats 2 and 4, but goes to 1 and 4 momentarily!

Her Majesty

0:03 Listen!
    Left channel. Various reports that either :-
    A female, vibrato voice sings a note.
    A sped up male voice sings a note.
    A Moog synthesizer note trails off from "the loud chord".
    Or possibly a cartoon "boing" sound effect happens.

Hey Bulldog

0:00-0:05, 0:08-0:11
    Right channel, clicks of drum sticks. Also snares on drum kit rattling in sympathy with the rest of the guitars etc. Also you can hear John/Paul "ruff"ing along as a count in. Partly fixed on remastered Yellow Submarine version.

0:52-1:04, 1:52-2:04, 2:22-2:32
    Some people note strange sounds in here such as "Paul heavy breathing", "John breathing hard" etc. However this is the sound of the snare through a delayed reverb, and is intentional. "Thwack-ahhhhh".

    Sharp edit in the guitar track, to put solo in?, cutting in after "talk to me" and apparently ending at 1:32 in a click.

    I've received reports of shouting and talking here, but I'm sure these are intentional. Running around chasing dogs/being chased by dogs etc.

    Left channel, a click, then someone "Whoops", as Lennon sings "Big Man", and in the left channel Ringo shouts "Yeah?"

    The book "The Beatles Lyrics" has the words wrong to the ending. Most interestingly, they don't include all of the John/Paul dialogue

J+P) "Hey Bulldog ..."
P) "Hey man"
J) "What's that, [boy/Paul]?"
P) "Ruff!"
J) "Whaddya say?"
P) "I say, ruff!"
J) "You know any more?"
P) "Wowowowwwaaaaa"
J) Screams loudly
P) "You got it, that's it, you hit it, that's it man, Woop!, that's it you got it"
J) Screams hysterically
P) "Don't look at me man, I already have ten children" [also heard as grandchildren]
J) Screams hysterically
P) "[Clap man, clap / Quiet boy, quiet]" [unclear]
J) "Okay"
P) "[Clap! / Quiet!]" [unclear]

These last couple of lines ("Clap man, clap") are obviously Paul's voice, however the Yellow Submarine animation shows John singing them. Animator's error?

    Total drop out in right channel. Some people report that this is fixed on remastered Yellow Submarine versions, others still hear it! Seems to be a reaction to Ringo's snare (maybe a limiter kicked in to hold back the signal).

Hey Jude

    Centre - someone rattles a tambourine.

    Strange vocal noises during singing, almost like swallowing while singing (clever!) This has been picked up as "more tambourine rattling". True, there is more tambourine rattling just after "start", which wasn't listed. But the vocal anomaly above is during "make it". Might be some strange effect of Paul's throat being picked up by the mic.

    George plays his riff that doubles the "Da da da daaa daaa" phrase here - this shouldn't happen until the end of the verse. George stops short of completing the riff.

    Right channel, a high voice (female? Paul's falsetto?) talking - sounds like "Love You" - on the words "Just You". This may be Paul's vocal coming through from the piano track.

2:52-3:02. 2:58 mostly Listen!
    This is Mark Lewisohn's "Recording Sessions" non-specific reference to an "undeleted expletive".

As Paul and John sing "Remember to let her under your skin", John shouts "Got the wrong chord!", (maybe in response to the clunky dead chord at 2:53-2:55) the last word sticks out more than the previous three, and then swears.

If you count out loud 1-2-3-4 in time to the rhythm through this section, you get :-

     1       2     3    4    1    2   3       4    1
P/J: skin                    Then You Be      Gi - In
 J:  Got the wrong chord              F**king Hell

Michael Patrick observes that George lets out an unchoreographed "aah" at this point, this may well be him hearing the word "chord".

However, just after "begin" (to make it better) at 3:00 there is some form of edit, which causes a noticeable brightening of the left channel. Maybe there is a mistake in the instrumental here too, which was hidden by the edit?

Expletive also heard as "Need some help", "Ok Now", "Take it out" and many others.

As an alternative, but probably less accurate, explanation wa3dhb@bellatlantic.net adds

I found this bit of info on whitealbum.cjb.net. The person who says "F*cking hell" in Hey Jude is John Perry from the group Grapefruit. He says he came into the studio, and Paul told him to put on headphones and do backup. He did, and the headphones were on very loud, so he shouted "F*cking hell!"

I find this hard to believe, as it doesn't explain why John Perry "Got the wrong chord!" Maybe he was heckling John for getting the chords wrong. I also find it amazing that people can wander in and out of the studio during a take, and are unprofessional enough to potentially spoil a take by behaving like that. He won't be invited back! No, I'm not buying that one ...

    Right channel, lots of shouting from Paul, all very much off microphone for quite a while before it is mixed in to the centre at full volume. "Make it [better]" (3:15), lines about "making it, not breaking it" (3:20,3:36) poke through, but they are all quite hard to hear.

    Non-anomaly - often being reported as "Don't f**k about Jude". This is really "Don't make it bad Jude".

    Similarly, this is not "What the f**k Jude?" (many reports) or "Hey look at that you idiot!" or even "play a bit of that tune", "maybe we'll go back to England" (had this one twice) but just simply "The pain won't come back Jude".

However, on the foreign language anomaly front, V Lichere writes

Sounds exactly, with the proper accent, like the French "He, on peut partir?" ("Hey, can we leave?") Am I the only one to hear that? Is it possible?

    Past Masters 2 Version, bass attempts a fancy run, but doesn't do it correctly. Then it hits wrong note repeatedly. Finally, bass is faded out or cut before the track finishes.

To spare any further odd anomaly reports, the full text of Paul's amazing shoutings from where it comes in clearly at 3:58 is (approximately) ...

(3:58) "Jude Judy Judy Judy Judy Judy.. ow, wahow!"
(4:07) "Ow hoo, my my my"
(4:12) "Jude Jude Jude Jude Joo-oo ..."
(4:18) "Na na na na na, yeh yeh yeh"
(4:24) "Yeah you know you can make it, yeah Jude, you not gotta break it"
(4:30) "Don't take it bad Jude"
(4:33) "Take a sad song and make it better"
(4:36) "Oh Jude, Jude, Hey Jude, woooow"
(4:44) "Ooo, Joooode"
(4:47) "Yeah"
(4:50) "Hey, hey, hey-ya-ay"
(4:57) "Hey, hey, hey ..."
(5:03)"Now Jude Jude Jude Jude Jude Jude, yeah yeah yeah yeah ..."
(5:12) "Woh yeah ye-ah"
(5:16) "Ah nanananananana cause I wanna na na na"
(5:20) "Nanananana ... nanalalal ow ow ow"
(5:35) "Oh God"
(5:37) "The pain won't come back Jude"

(5:58) "Yeah, eh hehe heh"
(6:03) "Make it through"
(6:07) "Yeyeye Yeah .. yeah y-yeah ... yeah-hahahaha ...."
(6:20) "Goodeveningladiesandgentlemen mymymymy mahhhh"
(6:29) "oooo"
(6:35) "oo-oo"
(6:41) "ooo"
(6:47) "Woooh"
(6:48) "Well then a na-nanan"
(6:56) "Isn't that ..."

Hold Me Tight

    Squeaky bass pedal on Ringo's kit, best heard at 0:59-1:12, 1:39-1:50, (use left channel of the stereo version if you have it).

0:03 and 1:12, 1:52
    John sings " ... right, so", and yet
    Paul sings " ... right, now"
    (comes out in total as "so right, sow hold me").

Although at 1:52 there also seems to be an edit through this piece as well!

    Phrasing of "tonight" as "too-night" and "t'night" varies between the singers.

    John and George's echo of "hold" is disastrous, it sounds like George scooped into John's note.

    John comes in late with his backing vocal, and there's some faint speech, leaving a backing of "night <mumble> Tonight!"

    Sudden change in the volume on the right channel of the stereo version only.

Honey Don't

    Ringo's voice cracks in "Don't".

Honey Pie

    Some voices audible, left channel only.

    Two quiet ticks, and a stray guitar note (centre).

    Two slightly out of tune (1 semitone flat) guitar notes, probably the beginnings of the little solo that we weren't meant to hear.

    Tape noise (hiss) increases during the guitar solo, especially in the right channel.

    Click, sounds a bit like a "tut" sound, centred.

    Just before "Kindly send", left channel, a voice whoops.

    The word "so" distorts, evidently this is one loud bit that the limiters didn't catch.

    Click, centre, in fadeout.

Buy At Amazon

What Goes On V3.09 © 2017 Mike Brown. Visit the website at http://wgo.signal11.org.uk for the latest version and contact details.