Cry For A Shadow

Anthology 1 album artworkWritten by: Harrison-Lennon
Recorded: 22/23 June 1961
Producer: Bert Kaempfert
Engineer: Karl Hinze

Released: 21 November 1995

George Harrison: lead guitar
John Lennon: rhythm guitar
Paul McCartney: bass
Pete Best: drums

Available on:
Anthology 1

The Beatles’ first original composition to be professionally recorded, Cry For A Shadow was an instrumental written by John Lennon and George Harrison.

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The Beatles had been approached to record a number of songs as the backing band for English rock ‘n’ roll singer Tony Sheridan. Towards the end of the June 1961 session, which took place in a Hamburg school assembly hall, they taped two songs of their own choosing: Ain’t She Sweet and Cry For A Shadow.

It was a bit disappointing because we’d been hoping to get a record deal for ourselves. Although we did Ain’t She Sweet and the instrumental Cry For A Shadow without Sheridan, they didn’t even put our name on the record.
George Harrison
Anthology

Originally known as Beatle Bop, Cry For A Shadow wasn’t released until The Beatles had found fame. It eventually saw light of day in the US and UK in 1964, on a Polydor single backed with a Sheridan song, Why.

Cry For A Shadow is the only known composition to be credited to Harrison-Lennon. The title and Harrison’s lead guitar work suggest the influence of The Shadows, Cliff Richard’s backing band. Although The Beatles were largely dismissive of The Shadows, their hit Apache was occasionally a feature of the lengthy German shows.

In Hamburg we had to play so long, we actually used to play Apache… But John and I were just bullshitting one day, and he had this new little Rickenbacker with with a funny kind of wobble bar on it. And he started playing that off, and I just came in, and we made it up right on the spot.
George Harrison
Guitar Player magazine, 1987

By 1961, a number of rock ‘n’ roll instrumentals had found chart success. In addition to The Shadows’ Apache, The Beatles occasionally performed covers including Harry Lime (the Third Man theme), Duane Eddy’s Three Thirty Blues, and Jet Harris and Tony Meehan’s 1963 hit Diamonds.

They also played a number of original instrumental compositions in their early period: as well as Cry For A Shadow, they also performed Hot As Sun, Winston’s Walk and Looking Glass. Their best-known instrumental, however, was Flying, from 1967′s Magical Mystery Tour.

The only vocals on Cry For A Shadow are screams and yelps, presumably by Lennon and McCartney, in the background.

The result wasn’t a bit like Apache, but we liked it and we used it in the act for a while.
George Harrison
NME, 1963

56 responses on “Cry For A Shadow

  1. Tyzos Rotterdam

    I doubt if the Beatles were dismissive about The Shadows, especially about Hank Marvin.
    I think he had a huge influence on George, Paul and John.
    George even had stated that without The Shads there were no Beatles.

  2. Joseph Brush

    I would like to know where and when George stated that without the Shadows there would be no Beatles.
    I remember the Shadows as having little or no impact in North America at the time.
    In the U.K. their style was popular which George confirmed in the Anthology series but he also seemed dismissive at the same time when briefly talking about them.
    Cliff Richard and the Shadows only had about 3 songs that were hits over here.
    On the other hand, instrumental groups such as the Ventures, Johnny And The Hurricanes, Link Wray, and Duane Eddy were very influential and successful not only in North America but also in Europe and in Japan.
    Not only were these aforementioned acts more influential they were also more interesting to watch, unlike the Shadows.
    It has been stated over and over again by the Beatles themselves that they owed a debt of gratitude to artists such as: Elvis Presley, Little Richard, Fats Domino, Chuck Berry, Jerry Lee Lewis, Buddy Holly, Sam Cooke, Gene Vincent, and Larry Williams.
    All of these GREATS were idols of the Beatles and inspired them to learn and play rock and roll.
    The Shadows do not belong in such company.

    1. Eric Gudmunsen

      Neil Young’s song “From Hank To Hendrix” is name-checking Hank Marvin so I think his importance in the genesis of rock music is highly underrated. And although the Beatles supposedly sneered at The Shadows, we all sneer at Abba and The Bee Gees whilst secretly loving them!

        1. josephbrush

          @Eric Gudmunsen Give me absolute proof that Neil Young ascertains in a quote that the “Hank” mentioned in his song can be attributed to Hank Marvin and not by heresay or wish fullfillment.

              1. Roger Enevoldsen

                Warren, after all the discussion I was seeing posted above, I was really looking forward to your comments, assuming you are Brian’s son? I found myself in disagreement with much of what was said above, particularly the anti-Shadows comments. I never really heard the Shadows’ music (and much of Cliff’s) until around 2000, but I’ve been hooked on the Shadows ever since. I bought as much as I could and read as much as I could about the Shadows and Cliff. And I have seen much indication that many great musicians were influenced by Hank and the Shadows, mostly British artists, but certainly others around the world, including the States. When I first heard Cliff Richard and the Shads’ “Live at the ABC Kingston 1962″, I was floored, because it seemed to me, upon listening to the Shads playing live at the concert, that the Beatles got a lot from the way the Shads were playing. This doesn’t knock the Beatles in any way. I’m a HUGE Beatles fan, and have been since the 60′s. I’d love to hear any input you have about the Shadows influence. Thanks.

    2. bill

      Even The Beatles would want to appear ‘cool’ & say they were influenced by such American greats which no doubt they were – but in all reality they MUST have been influenced by the Shads also who were massive in U.K. Other articles say Beatles plus many other top players Clapton Paige Beck also rated Lonnie Donegan (British Skiffle king) as a major, major influence.One other big influence was Bert Weedon who wrote the play in day book – but of course these don’t seem as ‘cool’ or colourful as the U.S. artists who we the public and probably the Beatles were in awe of.But – give credit where it’s due, eh?

    3. Richard Wheatley

      Without doubt Cliff Richard & The Shadows were the biggest and most influential r’&’r act in the UK from 1958/9, until 1963/4.Virtually every aspiring r’&’r group in the UK modelled themselves on them.In terms of their musical ability, George Harrison is not in Hank Marvin’s class as a lead guitarist,and Ringo certainly cannot compare with either Tony Meehan or Brian Bennett,the latter being possibly one of the greatest percussionists eminating from the UK.I suppose that Cliff/Shads never really made it in North America because their persona was heavily influenced by US cultural icons.For Cliff read Elvis.For Hank read Buddy Holly.For Jet Harris,James Dean.Bruce,Tony Curtis and Tony/Brian any”cool” West Coast Modern Jazz drummer.So from a North American perspective they were bringing in nothing new at all.A similar thing has happened with France’s biggest r’&’r star Johnny Halliday, who out sold the Stones about twice over in recent concerts in France but has made little impact in either the UK or USA.Possibly the good fortune for the Beatles was to go to Germany and escape the Cliff/Shads musical hegemony, and be subjected to other influences,notably their hair styles,and being subjected to the grinding regime of playing in the seedy night clubs of Hamburg where they had to play an eclectic repertoire which honed their song writing skills.What Cliff/Shads did successfully was to synthesise the music of the southern US r’&’r greats.I saw the Beatles in March 1963,in my native Nottingham,and they played, by and large, the sort of programme that was pretty well par for the course for British beat groups at that time.The only Lennon/McCartney song they played that night was “Please,Please Me”.

  3. Tyzos Rotterdam

    What bothers me a bit, is that The Shadows and Hank Marvin (and of course Sir Cliff) don’t get the recognition they deserve. It is common accepted that British rock ‘n roll started with The Beatles, but there was a period from 1958 to 1963 in which Cliff and The Shads dominated the music scene (except in the US). They were the first in Britain with such huge stardom and their own sound. They were among the firsts to write their own songs. Listen for example their 1960 album Me And My Shadows. I consider this album as the first homegrown British rock album. Most of the songs on this album were penned by members of the Shadows.

    Although The Shadows were not as big or influentual as The Beatles were, their influence cannot be underestimated. Almost all great British, Canadian (and some American) guitarplayers from the 1960′s and 1970′s site Hank Marvin and The Shadows as their first big influence.

    In my opinion Cliff and The Shadows paved the way for the British Invasion leaded by The Beatles.

  4. Joseph Brush

    Cliff Richard and the Shadows was the U.K. homegrown answer to Elvis Presley
    —with the same curled lips and pompadour!
    They sang and played sappy pop music that dominated the British scene after the real American rock n’roll music died down (by late summer 1958).
    This previously mentioned timeframe is about the same time Cliff became number one in the U.K.!
    Coincidence or what?
    Cliff Richard was a product of the London music scene which thought it had perpetual exclusive rights to manipulate and control the U.K. market.
    The musical groups that came from cities such as Liverpool, Belfast, Birmingham, and Newcastle (among others) broke up the cobwebs of the tired British music scene.
    The Beatles & others overcome a snobbish class system that was against anyone who came from the “provinces”.

    Cliff’s music and movies made little impact over here and did not pave the way for the Beatles.
    Cliff and the Shadows did not appear on the Ed Sullivan Show or American Bandstand and were barely mentioned in American teen magazines such as Hit Parader.

    The Beatles broke down the door for British music performers to compete in America and the rest of the world.
    All by themselves!

    As for Hank Marvin, his name is not spoken of in the same breath by some of the guitarists that I have read.
    Performers such as Eric Clapton,Pete Townsend, Burton Cummings,George Harrison and John Fogarty who instead praised such influences as: B.B.King,Duane Eddy,Link Wray,James Burton,Chet Atkins, and of course Les Paul.
    In conclusion, Cliff and the Shadows were hitmakers that’s all.
    They sold a lot of records but they will always be “underestimated” (in your opinion) because history has found the right place for them.

  5. Tyzos Rotterdam

    Sorry, but what you say is not quite true imo.
    Cliff and The Shads did an American tour in 1960 and their reception over there was very good. They toured with some American r&r artists and became the favourite of the audience.
    Unfortunately the recordcompany didn’t support them fully during and after the tour, so they didn’t crack the States then, which was a missed opportunity.
    I’m convinced when the recordcompany had fully supported them, they could have cracked the States.
    And in 1962 they did appear on the Ed Sullivan Show (even twice) but made little inpact…

    And about sappy pop music… in that time (1962) even Elvis and other great artists made ‘sappy pop music’.
    But before that time Cliff and The Shadows made some really great rock ‘n roll records. For example listen to Move It, Dynamite, She’s Gone, Chopping and Changing, Mean Streak, Never Mind, Nine Times Out Of Ten, Please Don’t Tease, Gee Whiz It’s You, Apron Strings, D In Love and The Shadows’ instrumentals like Apache, FBI, Wonderful Land, Man of mystery…
    These are examples of how fresh the sound of Cliff and The Shadows was and still is.
    Imo these songs are among the best rock ‘n roll tracks ever made.

    And about the influence of Hank B Marvin, he IS cited as a main influence by guitarists such as Mark Knopfler (Dire Straits), Brian May (Queen), Jimmy Page (Led Zeppelin), Pete Townsend (The Who), Jeff Beck, Randy Newman, and even by Clapton and Hendrix and many many more…

    Cliff and The Shadows started the music scene in the UK (not in the US, but that is not important in this case).
    And I think they were very important in the development of rock ‘n roll music.

    How many guys in the 1960′s (and even today) did pick up a guitar after hearing The Shadows’ Apache?
    I think countless

    1. Joe Post author

      From Anthology:
      PAUL: “It was symptomatic of our group that we turned ‘How Do You Do It’ down. The other huge stand in our life, a little later on, was saying to Brian Epstein, ‘We’re not going to America until we’ve got a Number One there.’ We waited, and I think that was one of the best moves we ever made. We were very cheeky. It was all based on Cliff Richard, who had been to America and been third on the bill to Frankie Avalon. We thought, ‘Oh dear, Cliff is a bigger star than Avalon! How could he do that? And Adam Faith – all the early stars we looked up to had gone with terrible billing. So we said, ‘We’re not going until we get a Number One and we’re headlining.’”

      JOHN: “[In the 1950s] There was no such thing as an English record. I think the first English record that was anywhere near anything was ‘Move It’ by Cliff Richard, and before that there’d been nothing.” (1973)

      Move It was massively influential among British teenagers. I also saw a recent BBC documentary about the electric guitar, in which numerous famous British musicians said they first bought a guitar (a red Stratocaster was the most desirable, as Hank Marvin played one) after seeing The Shadows, with their choreographed movements and guitar-melodies.

      From Many Years From Now:
      Paul McCartney: “There were groups that did Cliff and the Shadows. There was a group called the Blue Angels that sounded exactly like Roy Orbison; they were immaculate. The Remo Four did a lot of Chet Atkins stuff, with clever guitar picking. So we decided we couldn’t keep up, we couldn’t better any of them, we had to find our own identity. We looked on Bo Diddley b’ sides, we looked for obscure rhythm and blues things: Searchin’ by the Coasters, Anna by Arthur Alexander.”

      It’s also worth pointing out that the Decca producer for The Beatles’ audition was Tony Meehan, the Shadows’ drummer. The Beatles later claimed that Decca couldn’t see what was unique about them, as they were unable to see beyond the confined of the styles of British bands like The Shadows.

      Meehan was actually paid by Brian Epstein to produce the session, and The Beatles were impressed to be in the studio with a member of The Shadows.

      McCartney, in Many Years From Now: “We gave him some money for doing it. There was a deal struck there, it was the first time we saw that they weren’t all doing it just for art. This was commercial realities kicking in. We sat out there in the studio and tried to perform. We’d got a fairly silly repertoire at that time, George doing Sheik of Araby and I was still doing Besame Mucho.”

      The Beatles also met Cliff and the Shadows several times at parties and events in the early-to-mid 1960s. There was some rivalry and possible disdain on The Beatles’ part, but in reality I believe they were cordial and even friendly towards each other.

  6. Tyzos Rotterdam

    Yes that’s true.

    To celebrate the success of Cliff’s “Summer Holiday” and The Shadows’ “Foot Tapper” both being at No.1 in March, Bruce Welch threw a party with Cliff, the Shadows, The Vernons Girls and the Beatles. The Beatles played their ‘new’ single “From Me To You”, while the Shads played “Atlantis”, followed by Cliff and Shads singing “Please Please Me”. This turned into a friendly impromptu battle of the bands. The Beatles did a Shadows impression complete with wildly exaggerated leg-kicking cross-over step. Cliff, the Shads and the Beatles all joined in singing and playing rhythm and blues. The Beatles sang the Chiffons’ “He’s So Fine”, the Isley Brothers’ “Shout” and some Ray Charles classics.
    The Shadows also attended Paul’s 21st birthday at the Liverpool Empire.

    According to Cliff’s biography there was mutual respect between both groups.

    So there were more links between them. The story is that Paul wrote Yesterday for a big part in Bruce Welch’s house in Albufeira.

    Also, according to Hank Marvin, the song Here There and Everywere was firstly offered by Paul to The Shadows as an instrumental.

    Ofcourse the Beatles were bigger, had more influence on the whole music scene. I cannot deny that.
    But, it bothers me that sometimes Cliff and The Shadows aren’t even mentioned as an influence on the music scene, especially the British music scene.
    There are so many 60′s groups who are heavily influenced by Cliff and The Shadows.

    1. Gerrit

      Tyzos, You mentioned that at the party thrown by Bruce, many songs were sung, including “He’s so fine”, originally sung by the Chiffons. This song gave George Harrison many problems later years when it was claimed that he used the melody of this song for his “My sweet lord”

  7. Joseph Brush

    Hello Tyzos & Co–
    First of all, over here Jorgen Ingmann’s version of Apache was a BIG hit record. The original version by the Shadows made no impact in North America.
    Once again I emphasize that the Ventures,Duane Eddy and Link Wray were a big influence over here for guitar related music.
    Second of all, I grew up during this era and enjoyed early rock n’roll and despised the watered down music that had taken over completely by 1959.
    By 1963 only Motown, some Folk Music and some R&B was any damm good.
    Let’s face it, people all over the world were listening to American music good and bad and also IMITATING it as well.

    I do not need to read about this era by sourcing wikipedia,youtube or Paul McCartney to sustain and support my point of view.
    Just because today you think or believe Cliff and the Shadows should have or could have cracked the American market doesn’t have anything to do with reality at that time.
    My perspective is that I lived through this era and Cliff and his group did not have the musical muscle or new image to make it big over here, irregardless of the their success elsewhere.

    As I recall it, one or two of his movies were delegated to drive-ins and run down theatres.
    If and when Cliff was on American TV and toured in America as well, it sure didn’t make any waves over here.
    There were tours over here at the time but only Dick Clark Tours, Motown revues or appearances by James Brown made big news.
    Myself and my friends attended Motown revues and couldn’t be bothered spending money on sappy music.

    Last and most important of all,this website is about the Beatles.
    Not Cliff Richard & The Shadows.
    If you so fervently admire Cliff & the Shadows then start a website about them.

    By the way, whose music is dominating the charts worldwide right now as we speak?

  8. Joseph Brush

    Hey Tyzos–Where did you read that George Harrison comment that without the Shadows there would be no Beatles?
    You still haven’t given us a response to that question.
    What are the names of the 60′s groups that were so heavily influenced by
    Cliff & The Shadows? (and quote the source).
    Get well soon.

    1. Warren Bennett

      Dear Mr Brush,

      I would have helped you out with a few things but you seem to be quite an angry soul.
      I’ll leave you with this…
      It was Neil Young who told Bruce Welch (Shadows guitarist) that the “hank” in “From Hank to Hendrix” was,in fact,Hank Marvin.
      I know,because I was there.

      Enjoy yourself,
      Warren

      1. Joseph Brush

        OK fine. Maybe you should have mentioned that in your Nov 2012 comment.
        Next time I travel to Omemee, Ontario (Neil’s home town) to visit friends, I’ll ask the owner of the Youngtown Museum to query that. Neil’s brother still lives there and perhaps he can shed some light or verify with Neil the next time he visits Omemee.

  9. Tyzos Rotterdam

    Joseph,

    My point is not that Cliff and The Shadows had influence or hits or whatsoever in the States. My point is that they don’t get that recognition they deserve for their contribution of rock ‘n roll music in the UK.
    Most UK groups from the ’60s and ’70s do cite Cliff and The Shadows as a huge influence on their music, or better said, because of them they started making music. That’s a fact. There are plenty of examples.

    I think you don’t know Cliff’s and The Shadows’ music, so I recommend you to listen to the following albums:

    Me and My Shadows – Cliff Richard and The Shadows (1960)
    The Shadows – The Shadows (1961)
    Live at the ABC Kingston – Cliff Richard and The Shadows (1962)

    All three albums are pre-Beatles albums and listening to these albums, for me it’s clear that British Rock music started with Cliff and The Shadows.

    And don’t get me wrong, I really like The Beatles and today I listen a lot of their music. But Cliff and The Shadows started it in the UK.

  10. McLerristarr

    This song can be heard in the background on the film That’ll Be The Day starring Ringo Starr. I’m not sure it was mentioned in the credits a long with many other songs in that film. It was either That’ll Be The Day or the sequel Stardust – I’m not sure. I don’t know of any other actual Beatles recordings being used in films that aren’t by or about the Beatles.

  11. Ammar

    Even if the Shadows did not have the impact in early 60′s, they did that for great British Bands and guitarist.
    forget about Cliff.
    but Hank Marvin influenced George Harrison, others including David Gilmour. his style was unique using vibrato and Echo.
    He was invited and Played on Rockestra with Paul 1979, that with the instrumental “Cry for a Shadow” shows how the Beatles adored them.
    The Shadows were Pioneers in a way.

  12. Tom Wotus

    Cry…shadow, obviously, wasn’t a great song-but OK for the time. This was only June,1961-so they DIDN’T sound all that polished. One has to start SOMEWHERE! However,I think it sounds EXCELLENT in STEREO…Very well-mixed-without the EXTREME wide separation.

  13. Colin

    One thing I’ve always thought about this recording is that the guitar on the middle section sounds nothing like George Harrison . Listening to his rather stumbling efforts on the other songs recorded at the time ( and for a few year’s after , reference the BBC sessions ) it’s hard to understand why he displayed such a fluid style on this one song . However if you listen to it in the context of a full album of the Hamburg recordings , it does sound rather like …. Tony Sheridan . Maybe Bert Kaempfert found the young George not quite up to the task and asked Mr Sheridan if he’d fill in ? George Martin experienced similar problems but unlike him Kaempfert did not have the studio time available to help Harrison work his part out so he asked the far superior player Sheridan to fill in , as he was there on the session anyway ?

    1. Joseph Goodrich

      Colin’s point is an excellent one. As much as I like CRY FOR A SHADOW, I too have questions about George’s technical proficiency at the time the song was recorded. George only developed a fluidity as a player, in my opinion, after the Beatles quit touring. I’ve even wondered if CRY FOR A SHADOW isn’t really played by the Beat Brothers, who backed Sheridan on other Hamburg recordings. The guitar is far beyond what George (or John, for that matter) could pull off in those day. Hmmm…Maybe it’s Paul on lead…

      1. Pablo Castro

        Of course it´s George ! What on earth makes you think that he would have written the piece but not played on it ? Listen to George´s solo on I Saw Her Standing There and Long Tall Sally to prove he was indeed a fine guitarrist at the time !

  14. Julian

    I just wonder if this is George on lead guitar. The playing is really quite good. George’s early efforts were quite mediocre although he developed into a fine player with time. I wonder if this is John taking the lead – at least for the recording?

  15. Julian

    On the Shadows issue. They were huge in the UK before the Beatles came to prominence. Hank Marvin in particular was a big influned on so many guitarists. Neil Young, Mark Knopfler, Brian May, James Wilsey (Chris Isaak) amongst them.

    Cry for a Shadow has always been a favourite of mine from those early years. Harmless tongue in cheek title. I’m still sceptical about whos’ playing lead on it. Bit too good for George of 1961 vintage!

    1. bill

      Wow! I was saying the same thing just the other day! George H. was a good guitarist who definately got better. He & John wrote Cry for a Shadow but I was always suspicious of the great standard of lead guitar work.Late songs like Rioll Over Beethoven Dizzy Miss lizzy seemed a wee bit clumsy – so why would earlier stuff be better? I have always suspected Tony Sheridan of playing lead on Cry for a Shadow. I wrte to his website but no reply!

  16. Charles_in_UK

    `Maybe it’s Paul on lead.’ Hardly! McCartney didn’t seem to find his `chops’ until sometime post Rubber Soul. For case & point, listen to his rather sloppy, somewhat clumsy lead fills in “Ticket to ride” (my least favorite aspect of an otherwise perfect song and record).

  17. G_malo

    I whole-heartedly agree with the comment regarding “I saw her standing there.” George’s solo is superb and has the same feel and tone as Cry for a Shadow. He was great (how many 19-year olds could play like that in `63?!).

  18. carlos gutman

    First of all this is a web about the BEATLES, please forget about the Shads, I will only say that the best rock´n´roll of all times were and are and will be made in Britain, so if the Shadows made the grade there is ok for me and they ARE in history.
    How can anybody suspect that George isn´t playing lead here ? Come on, BK was an extraordinary musician and producer, he must have taken the best from George. I´ve no doubt.

    1. Colin

      Wow that started a debate didn’t it ! If you listen to all of the Sheridan Hamburg recordings and his solo stuff , his blues / jazz influenced guitar style is remarkambly similar in structure and sound to the middle section of ” Cry For A Shadow ” , maybe George ( and John ? or more likely Sheridan ) played the verse which does sound oddly double tracked in places . As for the other tracks mentioned , the solo on ” I Saw Her Standing There ” sounds like an edit piece i.e. was recorded after the main track and edited in to the master . Lewihson mentions edit pieces being recorded during the sessions , and if you listen to the many outake takes the solos are , well , ropey in places . As for the other songs mentioned , these were recorded 2-3 years after “Cry For The Shadow” , and given the amount of live gigs they’d done in that period , there should have been an improvement in George’s playing ( but saying that , the “One After 909″ outakes suggest that there were still problems ) . I’m not having a go at him , in fact at times his ability to construct a melodic solo has led to them becoming a central a part of the songs , and are often repeated note for note by other guitarists . But everybody needs to learn their craft , and he hadn’t yet in 1961 .

      1. Julian

        I think that’s pretty much spot on. George’s playing really was very ordinary in the early years. Of course he improved tremendously over the years. It’s almost certainly someone else playing the solo on Cry For A Shadow and it seems the consensus is that it isTony Sheridan.

  19. Gerrit

    Neil Young and his song “From Hank to Hendrix” This may come as a surprise, but Neil knew and liked the music of the Shadows and he also played their music. When a CD was compiled as a tribute to Hank, Shadows songs were performed by other guitar players. One track was the instrumental “Spring is nearly here”, as played by Neil Young and Randy Bachman. The CD is called Twang and this specific track is on You Tube. It makes more sense to me that the Hank (Marvin – guitar player) and not the Hank (Williams – Country & Western Singer) would share the title with Hendrix.

    1. Joseph Brush

      Here in North America, the influence of country and western music with Hank Williams as the ultimate singer and songwriter is profound. Williams’ influence as the first country and western songwriter whose songs crossed over to the pop charts is well documented.
      Neil Young lived in rural Ontario in a village called Omemee (“there is a town in North Ontario”) for part of his childhood as well as living in western Canada.
      Neil recorded an entire country and western album entitled Old Ways in Nashville in 1985 and toured that year with a country and western band, whose album, the International Harvesters was released last year.
      It makes more sense to me that with Neil’s country roots in mind, Hank Williams is the “Hank” who shares the title with Hendrix.

      1. James Ferrell

        Well, this just keeps going back and forth. Yes, Neil Young owns Hank Williams’s D-28 (which he lent Bob Dylan at one point). But Hank Marvin was a big influence on Neil’s lead playing. The melodic approach, the heavy use of the wang bar for vibrato. Neil mentions that he and his fellow Canadian Randy Bachman were big Hank B. Marvin fans in Jimmy McDonough’s book “Shakey: a Neil Young Biography” (p 76). And he briefly mentions Marvin in his autobiography too (“Waging Heavy Peace” p 59).

        I haven’t found anything more concrete than this–no direct quote from Neil saying who the Hank is. But the Thrasher’s Wheat archive site, which is IMHO a good source of Neil Young info, claims that the Hank in “From Hank to Hendrix” is, in fact, Hank Marvin, not Hank Williams:

        “The lyrics of the song site the influence of the musical guitar giants Hank Marvin from the Shadows (not Hank Williams, as often cited) and Jimi Hendrix.”

  20. Gerrit

    On this Beatle site I have been reading with a great amount of pleasure to the Beatle/Shadow debate. I love the Beatles. They changed the world of music, in the process almost killing the profession of song-writing in the USA. But give the Shadows some credit, They did a world-wide tour about two years ago with Cliff, with most of the shows sell-outs and extra gigs crammed in. All over the world( yes, including the USA and Canada) there are clubs where bands meet regularly and play exclusively Shadows songs. I live in Cape Town and we have a Shadows club as well. There is also an annual Shads Festival (in Oslo?) and bands from all over the world attend. If imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, the Shads could easily be the most flattered group of all, by being the most imitated. Add to this the influence the Shadows had on people (well-known names) to pick up a guitar and play, and the snow-ball effect on people they influenced, the band called “The Shadows”, with lead player Hank Marvin, deserves a massive entry in the history books. Go give them a good neutral listen and try to play them on guitar. And then respect them.

  21. Julian

    Notwithstanding the debate around who played lead guitar on the recording, I think “Cry for a Shadow” is a marvellous little piece despite it being a bit of a dig at The Shadows. By the way, The Shads have their place firmly cemented in history and Hank Marvin is a living legend. Amongst his many admirers are several prominent figures who have actually they were directly influenced and/or inspired by him – Jimmy Page, Mark Knopfler. Neil Young, Brian May & James Wilsley (Chris Izaak). Nuff said I think.

  22. Bill

    Supposedly, Tony Sheridan played lead guitar on “My Bonnie”. The guitar has somewhat of a dirty tone to it. That same tone is on this song. If it’s true that Tony played on “My Bonnie”, it’s possible that he played on this too, since the tone is similar. Also, it’s plausible that he just might be playing in tandem with George. Any ideas?
    By the way, Jorgen Ingmann’s version of “Apache” is the definitive one, IMHO…

    1. Colin

      Another point of view is that Cry For A Shadow was never meant to be a Beatles record . After all Bert Kaempfert had seen them play live prior to the recording date so why should he have picked an instrumental to record for a group who were obviously a vocal rock and roll band ? Maybe he wanted to feature Tony Sheridan’s guitar playing and Sheridan had heard the Beatles do this one ( or even played it on stage with them ) and Kaempfert wanted to record an original rather than a cover . There was a long delay between the recording and the release ( recorded in 1961 and released in 1964 )and all concerned could have forgotten the full details of the session and/or decided to exploit the Beatles connection following their success .

  23. Alessandro

    It´s George ! Listen to his solos on Cryin Waiting Hoping, Nothing Shakin’ and Slow Down on Live at the BBC and even some of those in Live at the Star Club in Hamburg (Be Bop a Lula, for instance). He always displayed such a fluid style (listen to the “Don’t Bother Me” solo). Moreover, those on CFAS are typical George’s guitar licks of early ’60

  24. Rocky

    In regards to the debate over whom is playing lead guitar, the answer is simply George. I understand the doubt in his abilities, but he really was a great guitar player. His playing style wasn’t mediocre, as many of you harshly criticize him to be, but it was original and unique.

    If you analyze the playing in Cry For A Shadow and Tony Sheridan’s My Bonnie, the difference is quite large. Tony plays in a very pentatonic manner, a technique that George rarely used until the later years of his Beatle career. For those who do not understand what I mean by pentatonic, it means that he uses the entire fretboard when he goes into his solo. It’s actually quite simple, but very effective, and he would slither up and down the guitar like a mad-man. George, however, was much more careful. Almost all of his original solos in the earlier years were based around a single chord. It’s really a beautiful thing to see all the sounds he created with his 19 year old knowledge of the guitar. He was a true pioneer, and flat out turned into one of the most influential guitarists in the world, and history.

    Cry For A Shadow is based on a looping stretched chord, and circular riffs. Very much the style of George. The tone, however, does sound a little like Sheridan. But I have complete faith in George, he preformed much more challenging and technical solos with ease and grace.

    I really do love George’s playing, and it hurts to see how many “Beatle” fans doubt his abilities, not only in the early years, but also in the later years. He was a magnificent musician, and if you’re too daft to realize that, then it’s unfortunate.

  25. Rick

    This is George on Lead Guitar. You have to remember, all the solos done in those days were simple progressions. Nobody did any complicated guitar work and George has a teenager when he recorded this solo. He will always get flack from critics because he played to the songs and was not a flashy player. did he improve as the years went on, of course. Anyone would. Just keep in mind what the Beatles songs would have sounded like if he put in Jimi Hendrix solos in all the songs. it would have been detrimental to the sound the boys were trying to achieve. I have said this many times before on different blogs here that George is, was and always will be a great guitarist. Remember, its not what you play that makes you great, its what you don’t play.

  26. Lennon fan

    I’m going to be a bit controversial here and propose that the lead guitar is a mix of John Lennon playing the main melody with perhaps Tony Sheridan taking over the solo during the more difficult cycle-of-fourths “Sweet Georgia Brown” chord progression on the bridge.

    In fact, I would even so far as to surmise that it was Sheridan who supplied the chords used for that bridge… that is, unless the Beatles had cribbed them from a Shadows recording…?

    Playing an instrumental solo over that kind of chord progression, although frequent in jazz, requires more chops than perhaps a young rocker would likely possess. You’ve got to be very aware of ever-changing natural vs. sharp/flat notes and practice assiduously so you don’t get it wrong… the very kind of thing that someone who was basically a singer/songwriter, like John Lennon, would NOT really give a @#$% about!

    We know that all three guitarists were in the studio at the same time, so why not?

    Harrison was actually studying how to play lead guitar with Sheridan in 1961 Hamburg, according to an interview with Sheridan in this fascinating book:

    http://www.amazon.ca/While-My-Guitar-Gently-Weeps/dp/1423406095?tag=thebeabib0e-20

    The Beatles called Sheridan “the teacher”… so perhaps John and Paul also learned a few things from him?

    The thing that nails for me it is Harrison’s account quoted above:

    “(John Lennon) had this new little Rickenbacker with with a funny kind of wobble bar on it. And he started playing that off, and I just came in, and we made it up right on the spot.”

    That seems to indicate that Harrison is playing rhythm, not lead.

    If you listen to the record, you can clearly hear the use of the “wobble bar” during the most of the solo… but not during the bridge!

  27. David Young

    Just a comment on the general slant of the Joseph Brush comments. You don’t have to be famous or sell a lot of records or tour the U.S.A. in order to be a major influence on someone’s musical style. An unknown local guitar teacher, a “busker” playing under a bridge or a fellow musician who teaches you a cool riff backstage at a gig all have the potential to influence a musician’s musical style. To say that The Shadows were not famous enough to influence the Beatles is absurd. They had a unique style, were pretty well known in Europe and certainly had access to the Beatles. If one or all of the Beatles have cited the Shadows as an early influence, then chances are they are correct, since after all they were there when it happened.

    And on a different note, why all the Harrison/Lennon bashing? Harrison was a great rockabilly guitarist as a teenager, broadened into a well rounded guitar player as the Beatles wrote more and more sophisticated music and eventually became one of the most unique and beautifully expressive slide guitar players around. I keep reading over and over on these Beatles threads what a lousy guitar player Lennon was. This is simply not true. Many rhythm guitarists consider John a huge influence and a journeyman professional guitarist. Was he Clapton? No, but John played lead on quite a few songs, contrary to what you may have read. If you can get a copy of it, watch the film Let It Be and you can watch John playing or sharing lead on several songs. I have no doubt that John and George were capable of playing Cry For a Shadow.

  28. Joseph Bru;s;;h

    I said that American influences had a bigger influence on the Beatles than the Shadows. I also mentioned that the Shadows and Cliff did not succeed in North American like they did in Europe which seemed to upset fans of Cliff and the Shadows. The Beatles did not cover the Shadows on record. But the Beatles did cover Chuck Berry, Little Richard, Larry Williams and other American artists.
    As for being influenced by certain riffs and guitar players, I remember at the time George clearly stating in print and in press conferences over here that Chet Atkins and Carl Perkins were a big influence.
    I am speaking from my perspective of growing up in North America during the early days of rock and roll. Some people who have commented here on this site only know the 1950′s and 1960′s through reading books and watching videos and dvds.
    As for the bashing of Harrison and Lennon here on the Cry For A Shadow site, I don’t take those comments seriously. One basher comment was from someone who didn’t know that the Beat Brothers was the Beatles! Needless to say, the guitar playing of both George and John has been wonderful to listen to for all these years.

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