In November 1974 ‘Whatever Gets You Thru The Night’ knocked Bachman–Turner Overdrive’s You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet from the top of the Billboard Hot 100.
It remained at number one for just one week, although it fared less well in the UK, peaking at number 36. The single was credited to John Lennon with the Plastic Ono Nuclear Band, and was accompanied by ‘Beef Jerky’ on the b-side.
[Elton John] sang on a single that turned out to be a cut from Walls And Bridges, ‘Whatever Gets You Thru The Night’. He sang harmony on it and he really did a damn good job. So I sort of halfheartedly promised that if ‘Whatever Gets You Thru The Night’ became number one, which I had no reason to expect, I’d do Madison Square Garden with him. So one day Elton called and said, ‘Remember when you promised…’ It wasn’t like I promised some agent or something, so I was suddenly stuck. I had to go on stage in the middle of nothing.
All We Are Saying, David Sheff
Lennon appeared onstage with Elton John to perform the song on 28 November 1974, as well as versions of ‘Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds’ and ‘I Saw Her Standing There’. The performance of ‘Whatever Gets You Thru The Night’ was included as a bonus track on the 2005 compact disc reissue of Walls And Bridges.
Also on this day...
- 2013: Paul McCartney live at El Capitan Outdoor Stage, Los Angeles (Jimmy Kimmel Live)
- 1968: Recording: Happiness Is A Warm Gun
- 1967: Filming: Magical Mystery Tour
- 1962: Live: Cavern Club, Liverpool (evening)
- 1961: Live: Aintree Institute, Liverpool
- 1960: Live: Indra Club, Hamburg
Want more? Visit the Beatles history section.