Released: 18 March 1996 (UK), 19 March 1996 (US)
Written by Lennon and McCartney and sung by Ringo Starr, If You’ve Got Trouble was originally intended to be a part of Help!, the soundtrack to The Beatles’ second film.
I recorded a song for the Help! album that was never released – If You’ve Got Trouble. George Martin found it in the vaults of EMI studios.
The songs given to Ringo to sing were never among Lennon and McCartney’s finest: I Wanna Be Your Man and What Goes On were little more than album fillers, and often Starr was left to sing cover versions.
If You’ve Got Trouble bears the unfortunate hallmarks of the two songwriters going through the motions: uninspired lyrics about diamond rings, “money and things”, references to Starr’s haplessness (his persona within the group’s early years was that of an amiable clown), and a tune which was less than inspired.
We’ve just come across that, and it’s the most weird song. I’ve no recollection of ever recording it. It’s got stupid words and is the naffest song. No wonder it didn’t make it onto anything.
In the studio
The rhythm track was recorded first, then double-tracked lead and backing vocals were overdubbed, along with an extra guitar part by George Harrison.
That the song wasn’t working as planned can be heard in Ringo’s desperate call before the guitar solo: “Ah, rock on – anybody!” If You’ve Got Trouble was eventually replaced on the Help! album by Act Naturally, recorded four months later.