Label from Philippine single, released in 1968 with "Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da" as the A-side
|Song by the Beatles|
|from the album The Beatles|
|Released||22 November 1968|
|Recorded||16–17 September 1968|
"I Will" is a song by the Beatles that was released on their 1968 album The Beatles. It was written by Paul McCartney (credited to Lennon–McCartney) and features him on lead vocal, guitar, and "vocal bass".
"I Will" was one of the songs composed by the Beatles and their associates while in Rishikesh, India. Although the music came together fairly easily, the words were worked on in India, and remained unfinished even as recording began back in London. Paul McCartney commented on the song, saying: "It's still one of my favorite melodies that I've written. You just occasionally get lucky with a melody and it becomes rather complete and I think this is one of them; quite a complete tune."
During take 19 of "I Will", McCartney ad-libbed an untitled and uncopyrighted song (referred to as "Can you take me back?" by author Ian MacDonald), a 28-second segment of which ended up on side 4 of the album The Beatles on "Cry Baby Cry" as what MacDonald described as "a sinister introduction to 'Revolution 9'".
During take 29, McCartney, as an ad-lib, cheekily replaced "won't" in place of will during the first verse before Lennon replies, "Yes you will." McCartney chuckles after this ad-lib and then the song ends at this point. This take was included in the expanded box-set of The Beatles released in 2018.
- Paul McCartney – lead and backing vocals, acoustic guitars, "vocal bass"
- John Lennon – percussion, maracas
- Ringo Starr – bongos, cymbals
- Personnel per Ian MacDonald.
Cover versions and appearances in other media
- Hugh Masekela included the song in his 1970 album Reconstruction.
- A reggae cover was done by John Holt and released on his 1976 album 2000 Volts of Holt.
- The song was sung in the 1994 romantic movie Love Affair, starring Annette Bening and Warren Beatty.
- Phish, on the album Live Phish Volume 13.
- In 1995, Alison Krauss recorded a cover of the song for her album Now That I've Found You: A Collection.
- Diana Ross covered the song for her 2007 album I Love You.
- Garrison Keillor sang the song in an episode of the radio show A Prairie Home Companion.
- James Taylor & Carly Simon's son Ben Taylor recorded the song for the 1995 movie Bye Bye Love and his recording is also on the original soundtrack album.
- Jonathan Coulton covered the song in his album Thing a Week Two.
- Tim Curry did a reggae version of the song on his first album, Read My Lips.
- Art Garfunkel covered the song on his 1997 album Songs from a Parent to a Child.
- Al Di Meola covered the song on his 2013 CD All Your Life.
- Tuck & Patti covered the song on their 1998 CD Paradise Found.
- Kathy Mattea covered the song with Aly Bain and Jerry Douglas for Transatlantic Sessions series 1, 1995.
- Daniel Johnston covered the song on his 1983 self-released cassette-tape album More Songs of Pain.
- Israeli singer Gidi Gov sang a version of the song in Hebrew on his television show "Laila Gov"
- Jazz Martyrs covered the song on their 2017 CD Along Similar Lines.
- Roma di Luna covered the song on the compilation album Minnesota Beatles Project
- Lewis, Michael. 100 Best Beatles Songs: A Passionate Fan's Guide. p. 163. ISBN 1603762655.
- Miles 1994, p. 348.
- Lewisohn 1988, p. 155.
- MacDonald 2005, p. 315.
- "John Holt - 2000 Volts Of Holt at Discogs". Discogs.com. Retrieved 2016-10-02.
- "Live Phish, Vol. 13: 10/31/94, Glens Falls Civic Center, Glens Falls, NY - Phish". AllMusic. Retrieved 7 September 2017.
- Lewisohn, Mark (1988). The Beatles Recording Sessions. New York: Harmony Books. ISBN 0-517-57066-1.
- MacDonald, Ian (2005). Revolution in the Head: The Beatles' Records and the Sixties (2nd revised ed.). London: Pimlico. ISBN 1-84413-828-3.