Mr. Moonlight (song)

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"Mr. Moonlight"
Mr. Moonlight - The Beatles.jpg
The 1969 Japanese single release of the song, backed with "What You're Doing"
Song by the Beatles
from the album Beatles for Sale
Released December 4, 1964 (mono and stereo)
Recorded October 18, 1964,
EMI Studios, London
Genre Folk rock
Length 2:35 (US stereo version)
2:38 (stereo version)
2:41 (US stereo version)
Label Parlophone
Songwriter(s) Roy Lee Johnson
Producer(s) George Martin

"Mr. Moonlight" is a song written by Roy Lee Johnson, best known for being covered by the Beatles on the 1964 albums Beatles for Sale in the United Kingdom and Beatles '65 in the United States.

Different versions[edit]

The first known recording of the song was by blues pianist Piano Red, recording as "Dr. Feelgood and the Interns". It was released as a B-side of a minor rhythm & blues hit single (titled "Dr. Feelgood") in 1962.[1] The record became something of a cult favorite among several young British R&B enthusiasts, some of whom would soon go on to become members of well-known bands.

Another emerging beat group, The Hollies, recorded and released their own performance of the song prior to the Beatles' version.

In addition, the same song was also covered by the Merseybeats in 1963. It entered Vancouver's CFUN chart April 18, 1964.[2]

A Spanish cover was recorded by the Mexican vocal trio Los Apson Boys titled "Triste Luna".

The Beatles' version[edit]

The Beatles had covered the song in their live act for years before it appeared on record. Their recording features Latin-style percussion, prominent vocal harmonies, and, unusually, an organ solo. John Lennon sings lead, with backing vocals from Paul McCartney and George Harrison.


The Beatles recorded this song across two different days in 1964. The first day was August 14, where they recorded four takes (of which, one and four appear on Anthology 1). They also recorded on October 18, again in four takes, the last two of which showcased McCartney on Hammond organ.[1]


Personnel per The Beatles Bible[1][better source needed]


  1. ^ a b c "The Beatles Bible: Mr. Moonlight". Retrieved April 14, 2009. 
  2. ^ Vancouver's CFUN chart