Carlos Mendes – Penina single cover‘Penina’ was written by Paul McCartney in December 1968, and recorded by Portuguese singer Carlos Mendes and the group Jotta Herra the following year.

The song was briefly played by The Beatles on 9 January 1969, the sixth day of the Get Back/Let It Be sessions.

I went to Portugal on holiday [in late 1968] and returned to the hotel one night slightly the worse for a few drinks. There was a band playing and I ended up on the drums. The hotel was called Penina, I made up a song with that name, someone made inquiries about it and I gave it to them. And, no, I shouldn’t think I’d ever record it myself!
Paul McCartney, 1994
Club Sandwich

The band playing at the Hotel Penina was Jotta Herra, who were the first to be offered the song. They and Mendes both released version of ‘Penina’ in Portugal in the summer of 1969.

Although McCartney’s name appeared on the picture sleeves of both singles, it did little to entice record buyers, and ‘Penina’ remains a lesser known McCartney composition.

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