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(Credit: Alamy)

Music

The Beatles song that wasn't good enough for 'Help!'

It might not have seemed like it at the time, but The Beatles recorded Rubber Soul under a strict deadline. This was still the era of the band’s history that required them to perform live, visit radio stations, act in films, and generally travel at an exhaustive rate. Thankfully for them, most of those commitments didn’t filter into the Rubber Soul sessions. What did constrict them was a request from their record label to have an album out by Christmas.

The Beatles already had an album out in 1965, Help! But since they were expected to crank out two albums a year at the time, the Fab Four shuffled back into the studio for another go. This time around, marijuana was driving the ship. John Lennon had also grown weary of the mindless love songs that had become the band’s bread and butter, wishing to bring more gravity and sophistication to their work.

Inspired by folk, and more reflective of their increasing interests in both psychedelia and Motown soul, Rubber Soul was the biggest creative step forward that the band had managed to make up to that point. No song on the album could have fit in with the teenybopper sounds of the past… with one major exception. 

‘Wait’ was originally recorded during the sessions for Help! earlier in the year but was ultimately rejected for inclusion on the album. By early November, The Beatles were facing down the serious possibility of not having enough songs to make up a full-length album. Sessions were booked until the early morning hours in an attempt to finish the LP, but ultimately, the band were still one song short of meeting the required 35-minute run time.

With that in mind, ‘Wait’ was brought back into the fold. A quick series of overdubs, including new vocals, guitar parts, and percussion, was knocked off to make the track fit in better with the sonic sound of Rubber Soul. With the record now complete, the band could now make quick work of mixing the final record.

All told, over half of Rubber Soul was finished between November 3rd and November 11th, representing a remarkably efficient couple of days for the band.

Check out ‘Wait’ down below.