I Just Don’t Understand

Live At The BBC album artworkWritten by: Wilkin-Westberry
Recorded: 16 July 1963
Producer: Terry Henebery

Released: 30 November 1994 (UK), 5 December 1994 (US)

John Lennon: vocals, rhythm guitar
Paul McCartney: backing vocals, bass
George Harrison: backing vocals, lead guitar
Ringo Starr: drums

Available on:
Live At The BBC

The Beatles recorded I Just Don’t Understand just once, for a BBC radio show in 1963.

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The minor-key ballad had previously been a hit in 1961 for Swedish film star Ann-Margret Olsson. It was taken from her debut album And Here She Is: Ann-Margret, and peaked at number 17 in the US Billboard Top 40.

The Beatles’ version was recorded on 16 July 1963 at the BBC Paris Studio, London. It was the third of five songs performed for the 10th edition of the Pop Go The Beatles radio show, which was first broadcast on 20 August.

Lyrics

Well you call me your baby
When you’re holding my hand
But the way that you hurt me
I just don’t understand

Well you say that you need me
Like an ocean needs sand
But the way you deceive me
I just don’t understand

Well you know that I love you
More than anyone can
But a one-sided love
I just don’t understand

Well you know that I love you
More than anyone can
But a one-sided love
I just don’t understand

Well you call me your baby
When you’re holding my hand
Oh how you can hurt me
I just don’t understand

3 responses on “I Just Don’t Understand

  1. tom watt

    I saw the beatles in glasgow in 1963.One of the support bands was a group called the cresters who came on immediately before them and finished their set with “you really got a hold on me” as “a nod to whats coming up next” A few weeks later they brought out “I just dont understand as a single”.At the time I wasn’t aware that it had been in the Beatles repertoire.I wonder if the Beatles suggested it to them.

  2. Bill

    Quite possibly John’s most obscure & oddest addition to their stage show (Paul’s would probably be “The Honeymoon Song”. That said, John’s interpretation is quite well done, although Ann-Margret’s version is naturally more sultry. I had Ann’s version on an RCA Victor 45 as a kid, still got it , in fact.

    1. Bill

      Ann’s version from 1961 is one of the first instances of a fuzz guitar heard on record. Another would be Marty Robbins’ “Don’t Worry” from the same year.

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