Can't Buy Me Love: Wikis


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"Can't Buy Me Love"
Single by The Beatles
from the album A Hard Day's Night
B-side "You Can't Do That"
Released 16 March 1964 (US)
20 March 1964 (UK)
Format 7"
Recorded 29 January 1964
Pathé Marconi Studios, Paris
Genre Rock
Length 2:11
Label Parlophone R5114 (UK)
Capitol 5150 (US)
Writer(s) Lennon/McCartney
Producer George Martin
Certification Gold (RIAA)[1]
The Beatles singles chronology
"I Want to Hold Your Hand"
"Can't Buy Me Love"
"A Hard Day's Night"

"Love Me Do"
Music sample
"Can't Buy Me Love"
A Hard Day's Night track listing
Alternate covers
1992 CD issue

"Can't Buy Me Love" is a song composed by Paul McCartney[2] (credited to Lennon/McCartney) and released by The Beatles on the A-side of their sixth British single, "Can't Buy Me Love/You Can't Do That."



When pressed by American journalists in 1966 to reveal the song's "true" meaning, McCartney denied that "Can't Buy Me Love" was about prostitution, stating that, although it was open to interpretation, that suggestion was going too far, saying: "The idea behind it was that all these material possessions are all very well, but they won't buy me what I really want."[3] Although he was to later comment: "It should have been 'Can Buy Me Love' " when reflecting on the perks that money and fame had brought him.[4]


While in Paris, The Beatles stayed at the five star George V hotel and had an upright piano moved into one of their suites so that song writing could continue.[5] It was here that McCartney wrote "Can't Buy Me Love." The song was written under the pressure of the success achieved by "I Want to Hold Your Hand" which had just reached number one in America. When producer George Martin first heard "Can't Buy Me Love" he felt the song needed changing: "I thought that we really needed a tag for the song’s ending, and a tag for the beginning; a kind of intro. So I took the first two lines of the chorus and changed the ending, and said 'Let's just have these lines, and by altering the second phrase we can get back into the verse pretty quickly.'" And they said, "That's not a bad idea, we’ll do it that way".[6 ]

The song's verse is a twelve bar blues in structure, a formula that The Beatles seldom applied to their own material.[7 ]


"Can't Buy Me Love" was recorded on 29 January 1964 at EMI's Pathe Marconi Studios in Paris, France,[8] where The Beatles were performing 18 days of concerts at the Olympia Theatre. At this time, EMI's West Germany branch, Odeon, insisted that The Beatles would not sell records in any significant numbers in Germany unless they were actually sung in the German language[9 ] and The Beatles reluctantly agreed to re-record the vocals to "She Loves You" and "I Want to Hold Your Hand" prior to them being released in Germany. George Martin travelled to Paris with a newly mastered rhythm track for what was to be "Komm, Gib Mir Deine Hand". "Sie Liebt Dich" (She Loves You) required The Beatles to record a new rhythm track as the original two track recording had been scrapped.[8] EMI sent a translator to be present for this recording session which had been hurriedly arranged to tie in with The Beatles Paris commitments. This was accomplished well within the allotted studio time allowing The Beatles an opportunity to record the backing track, with a guide vocal, to the recently composed "Can't Buy Me Love".[9 ][8] McCartney's final vocal was overdubbed at Abbey Road Studios, London, on 25 February.[4]

The song also included some vocal harmonies in the background, which at the time became characteristic of the Beatles. After listening to the first take of the song, the band concluded that the song didn't need them. Therefore, Can't Buy Me Love became the first single the Beatles released without their background harmonies.

Also re-recorded on this day at Abbey Road was George Harrison's modified guitar solo, although his original solo can still just be heard in the background. Harrison said: "What happened was, we recorded first in Paris and re-recorded in England. Obviously they'd tried to overdub it, but in those days they only had two tracks, so you can hear the version we put on in London, and in the background you can hear a quieter one."[10 ] Helen Shapiro, a friend of The Beatles and present at this overdub session, says that Ringo Starr also added extra cymbals "over the top" and that "apparently this was something he did quite often on their records". [11] "Can't Buy Me Love" is also the only English-language Beatles track that The Beatles themselves recorded in a studio outside the UK, although the instrumental portion of The Beatles' B-side "The Inner Light" was recorded in India by Indian session musicians.


Personnel per Ian MacDonald[12 ]

Music charts

US music charts

The Beatles established four records on the Billboard Hot 100 with "Can't Buy Me Love" at number one:

  1. Until Billboard began using SoundScan for their charts, it had the biggest jump to number one: (number twenty-seven to number one; no other single ever did this).
  2. It gave The Beatles three consecutive number-one songs ("I Want to Hold Your Hand" was replaced at number one by "She Loves You" which was in turn replaced by "Can't Buy Me Love").
  3. When "Can't Buy Me Love" went to number one (4 April 1964), the entire top five of the Hot 100 was by The Beatles, the next positions being filled by "Twist and Shout", "She Loves You", "I Want to Hold Your Hand" and "Please Please Me," respectively. No other act has held the top five spots simultaneously.
  4. During its second week at number one (11 April 1964), The Beatles had fourteen songs on the Hot 100 at the same time.

Rolling Stone ranked "Can't Buy Me Love" at #289 on their list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.

UK music charts

Can't Buy Me Love became The Beatles' fourth UK number-one single and their third single to sell over a million copies in the UK.

The song was also released in the following albums: A Hard Day's Night (both the American United Artists and British Parlophone versions); Big Hits From England And The U.S.A., a various artists compilation album from Capitol issued in 1964; the British-only LP release A Collection Of Beatles Oldies; the 1970 compilation Hey Jude (also known as The Beatles Again); the 1973 double disc collection 1962–1966 (the Red Album); the 1982 release Reel Music, which features songs from Beatles films; the 1982 compilation 20 Greatest Hits (both in England and America); and 1, released in November 2000.

Cover versions


  1. ^ RIAA 2009.
  2. ^ MacDonald 2005, p. 105.
  3. ^ Badman 2000, p. 97.
  4. ^ a b Miles 1997, p. 162.
  5. ^ Miles 1997, p. 161.
  6. ^ The Beatles 2000, p. 114.
  7. ^ Martin & Pearson 1994, p. 40.
  8. ^ a b c Lewisohn 1988, p. 138.
  9. ^ a b The Beatles 2000, p. 112.
  10. ^ The Beatles 2000, pp. 112–114.
  11. ^ Southall 1982, p. 96.
  12. ^ MacDonald 2005, p. 104.


External links

Preceded by
"Little Children" by Billy J. Kramer & The Dakotas
UK number one single
"Can't Buy Me Love" by The Beatles

2 April 1964 (three weeks)
Succeeded by
"A World Without Love" by Peter and Gordon
Preceded by
"She Loves You" by The Beatles
Billboard Hot 100 number one single
4 April 1964 (five weeks)
Succeeded by
"Hello, Dolly!" by Louis Armstrong


Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikiquote

Can't Buy Me Love is a 1987 film about a guy who is tired of being a nerd, and makes a deal with one of the most popular girls in school to help him break into the "cool" clique.

Directed by Steve Rash and written by Michael Swerdlick.
Ronald is making an investment in his senior year. He's hiring the prettiest cheerleader in school to be his girlfriend.


Ronald Miller

  • [to Cindy] You can do anything you want, anything you put your heart and mind into!
  • You ignored the Donald Miller geek for seventeen years, now you want to ride the Ronnie Miller express!
  • [to his dad, about his brother] Here is the primate example. You're raising a doll-chopping homicidal maniac, and what do you do every time you see him? You give him money. Great!
  • [Talking to Cindy outside her house] I need to talk to you. Every time I call you're either taking a bath, washing your hair or you're out of the country. That was a good one, by the way.
  • Nerds, jocks. My side, your side. It's all bullshit. Its hard enough just trying to be yourself.

Cindy Mancini

  • Guys, take a look at my forehead... do you see a sign that says information?
  • [to Ronald] Iris? Oh yeah, she's a big conquest. She's given more rides than Greyhound!


  • Chuckie Miller: [about Ronald's card nights] Cards with the tards. Who could beat a night of cards, chips, dips and dorks?
  • Patty: [about Ronald] I mean, he went from totally geek, to totally chic!
  • Patty: [about Ronald] Like we're not supposed to know he's SPYING on us in his SPAZ-mobile.
  • Quint: [walking into the New Year's party] Quinton is in! Let the fun begin!
  • Kenneth: [to Ronald] You shit on my house!
  • Jock: Look - it's a nerd herd!


Patty: Cool outfit!
Barbara: What a severe suede!
Cindy Mancini: You guys, it's no big deal. Bobby sent it to me from Iowa. You know they have fine leathers down there.
Patty: Oh, yeah. The best leathers come from Rome, Paris, and Des Moines!

Ronald Miller: I'm going to a party. John Richmond's, with Cindy Mancini.
Chuckie Miller: Cindy Mancini? Senior, captain of the cheerleaders, most beautiful girl in the history of this county?
Ronald Miller: That's her. Well, I'm late, gotta bolt.
Chuckie Miller: Bolt? Something stinks in suburbia.

Patty: Didn't you like, used to mow our lawn?
Ronald Miller: Yes, and you have the nicest pair of rhododendrons in town!
Patty: Rhodo-who's?
Cindy Mancini: Guys, I'll see you in home ec, OK?
Barbara: What did he say?
Patty: I don't care! Dig on his shirt...

Cindy Mancini: The moon looks different now, it's not as mysterious or romantic as before.
Ronald Miller: I'm sorry I ruined it for you.
Cindy Mancini: You didn't ruin it, you just changed it I guess.

Cindy Mancini: [to Ronald, after their fake break-up] Whatever happens to your popularity, stay yourself, don't change to please others.
Ronald Miller: Me change? Never.

Chuckie Miller: Chillin!
Ronald's Dad: Shut up, Chuck!
Chuckie Miller: I was talking to Ma!
Ronald's Mom: Shut up, Chuck!

Patty: Are you into long distance relationships?
Ronald Miller: No.
Patty: Now, then why don't you reach out and touch someone?
[puts his hands on her breasts]

Barbara: Why wouldn't we go out with Ronald. I mean he's cute and sweet...
Patty: And good...
[Cindy and Barbara stare at her]
Patty: Come on, a lady never talks.
Cindy Mancini: Well I'll have to remember that the next time I see one.

Ronald Miller: What's his name, Biff?
Cindy Mancini: Don't give me that! His name happens to be... Brett!
Ronald Miller: Is there a difference?

Chuckie Miller: You nuked my brother.
Cindy Mancini: What?
Chuckie Miller: You took him from "geek" status to "king" status to no status.
Cindy Mancini: Chuckie Miller, right? He resorted to sending his messenger boy?
Chuckie Miller: Boy? I see no boy here.
[Cindy puts powder on his face]
Chuckie Miller: You think you shut me up?
Cindy Mancini: I didn't? Well, let me try again.
[attempts to put lipstick on Chuckie, who leaves]
Chuckie Miller: [to his friends] Babe said it was good for my complexion.


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