One of Paul McCartney’s earliest musical compositions, ‘Love Of The Loved’ was recorded by Cilla Black and released as a single in 1963.

‘Love Of The Loved’ is believed to date from 1959. Paul McCartney claimed to have written it one night on his Zenith acoustic guitar, while walking home to Allerton in Liverpool. According to his former girlfriend Dorothy (Dot) Rhone, McCartney wrote the song for her.

The song was part of The Quarrymen’s repertoire for a time, and The Beatles often played it at the Cavern Club in Liverpool. It was one of 15 songs performed at their audition for Decca Records on 1 January 1962, but the recording is yet to be officially released.

According to Mersey Beat founder Bill Harry, one night at Liverpool’s Blue Angel jazz club he asked John Lennon if The Beatles had any songs suitable for local singer Beryl Marsden to record. Lennon replied that ‘Love Of The Loved’ would be ideal for her, but Brian Epstein later vetoed the suggestion, as he wished to give Lennon-McCartney songs to his own roster of acts.

Epstein was initially unimpressed with Cilla Black. She was the cloakroom attendant at the Cavern, who was introduced to Epstein by Lennon. Black auditioned for Epstein with The Beatles as her backing band, but it was not a success – she was nervous, and The Beatles performed the songs in their familiar keys rather than re-pitching them for her vocal range.

I’d chosen to do ‘Summertime’, but at the very last moment I wished I hadn’t. I adored this song, and had sung it when I came to Birkenhead with the Big Three, but I hadn’t rehearsed it with The Beatles and it had just occurred to me that they would play it in the wrong key. It was too late for second thoughts, though. With one last wicked wink at me, John set the group off playing. I’d been right to worry. The music was not in my key and any adjustments that the boys were now trying to make were too late to save me. My voice sounded awful. Destroyed – and wanting to die – I struggled on to the end.
Cilla Black
What’s It All About?

Epstein saw Cilla Black perform on another occasion at the Blue Angel, and on 6 September 1963 contracted her as his only female performer. George Martin signed her to Parlophone and produced her debut single, ‘Love Of The Loved’. Paul McCartney attended the session.

Cilla Black – Love Of The Loved UK 7" single

Black’s debut single was issued on 27 September 1963, and peaked at number 30 in the UK singles chart on 19 October. This was an unusual failure for an Epstein act, particularly one with a Lennon-McCartney song.

I’d heard the song many times in the Cavern and I was ever so disappointed when I got into the studio and heard this jazzy brass sound. Paul did the same thing with ‘It’s For You’ later on. He sounded great on the demo he gave me and then turned it into a jazz waltz by the time I came to record it. Still, I can’t complain because both records were successful for me in the end even if they weren’t number ones.
Cilla Black
What’s It All About?

The Beatles’ version of ‘Love Of The Loved’ is the only original composition from the Decca audition not to have been made commercially available.

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