15 September 2020
A question that has been bothering me: Is it possible that the harmony vocal “ahs” on the slow intro to “My Bonnie ” are not being performed by the Beatles? To be clear, I have no doubt that the section of the recording after the intro is the Beatles (AKA The Beat Brothers), and that it’s Tony Sheridan singing the lead vocal throughout.
The reason that I ask is that there is a very low bass voice on the intro. It goes down to a strong low E2, which is near the bottom of the bass range, the lowest vocal range. In the Beatles’ usual harmony stacks, it’s typically John or George on the bottom, Paul on top. John seems the likely singer, but I’ve never heard him sing a note lower than G2 (in “I’m A Loser ” and in the backups to “Let It Be .” (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/…..h_notation)
Am I missing something? Is there another super-low John or George vocal out there?
In a more holistic way, the whole vocal group on the “My Bonnie ” intro doesn’t sound like *any* of the Beatles to my ears.
So then, who would the phantom vocal group be? The intro ends with a brief moment of silence, so it could have easily have been edited onto the master tape. Did Bert Kaempfert work with other vocal groups at the time who could have done the intro in another session that we don’t know about?
Has anyone raised this possibility in the Beatles lit? I have read only a small selection of the mountain of published Beatles analysis.
Thanks in advance for any comments or information.
28 March 2014
17 December 2012
There’s certainly no evidence that it wasn’t them. It was done as an edit piece, but that makes sense given there was a German and English version of the intro. You either record two versions of the whole song, or do two edits for the beginning of the song.
There’s certainly evidence in the Forthlin Road tapes, the Decca audition, and the BBC recordings that John could do a low bass when called for. Check out the Decca Three Cool Cats and the BBC Young Blood as examples.
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