Not a Second Time
- John Lennon – double-tracked vocal, acoustic guitar
- Paul McCartney – bass
- George Harrison – acoustic guitar
- Ringo Starr – drums
- George Martin – piano
In Not a Second Time John Lennon has composed another song in the style of Smokie Robinson. Many believe that George Harrison neither sings nor plays the guitar on this track which would make it the first Beatles recording with just three band members. This is unconfirmed. McCartney's bass is also faint, indicating that Lennon wrote the song and introduced it to the band shortly before recording. The absence of harmony vocals also supports this conclusion. George Martin adds a piano overdub that really provides the more solid accompaniment. One month after the UK release of Not a Second Time, William Mann, the London Times' music critic, wrote a review of this song, which has become famous: “Harmonic interest is typical of their quicker songs, and one gets the impression that they think simultaneously of harmony and melody, so firmly are the major tonic sevenths and ninths built into their tunes, and the flat submediant key switches, so natural is the Aeolian cadence at the end of 'Not A Second Time' (the chord progression which ends Mahler's Song of the Earth).” Having The Times take the Beatles' musicianship seriously was an important milestone in the development of their popularity and their unique sound, particularly in appealing to more educated and mature audiences. This track is also known for the double track of Lennon's voice during the fade at the end. The two versions diverge, which is a mistake, but the producer liked it well enough to keep this in the final recording.
September 11, 1963 in 9 takes.