Best of the Beatles: Please Please Me

Now, looking back through SDMB history, I see this series of polls has been done before. However, it was four years ago, so it’s time for an update, and although there were polls for each album, I’m not sure whether any “best song” was eventually chosen.
With that said, welcome to the first of several polls designed to determine the greatest Beatles song of all time! We’ll go in sequential order, starting with their debut album, Please Please Me. Once all the albums have been done, there will be an extra poll with singles never put on a studio album, and then the Final Poll, where the best song of each album will be collected and the greatest song will be chosen.
Now, I know this method isn’t perfect - it kind of has the same issue the World Cup does, so the final poll might not be that competitive - but it’s the simplest, cleanest way.
A little background knowledge about Please Please Me: it was actually recorded in one very, very long day - a day where John happened to have a cold. In an effort to make his voice smoother, they stockpiled boxes of milk in the studio (which is actually one of the worst things for a vocalist to drink) but despite their efforts, “Twist and Shout” came out scratchy and strained. Which made it a huge hit. Go figure.

Sorry to double post, but I was too late to edit: all songs that are covers have been marked with an asterisk in the polling options.

I went with “There’s a Place.” Second choice would have been “P.S. I Love You,” third choice the title track. These are the most interesting ones harmonically and melodically. Dig the unusual vocal harmonies in “There’s a Place” at the word “mind.” It’s lyrically a bit ahead of its time as well.

By the way, someone once wrote their meticulously detailed musicology thesis on how the composing of “I Saw Her Standing There” was (surely subconsciously) heavily influenced by “When the Saints Go Marching In.”

I voted for “Please Please Me”. It really caught my attention when it was first released. And I didn’t think much of “I Saw Her Standing There” when it was released. Now, however, I appreciate the Rockabilly aspects of ISHST more. So it was a toss-up for me. I felt I had to go with my first impressions when I first heard the songs.

We ought to be able to vote for more than one. A song that is everybody’s second choice, but nobody’s first, probably deserves to win.

I have always had a big soft spot for “Anna (Go to Him)”, but I can’t, in conscience, say its the best (or even second). But Please, Please Me is a great album. Almost every track on it is better than almost every track on Beatles for Sale, or With the Beatles, or Let it Be. (For their first few canonical albums, The Beatles followed the Windows release version rule.)

Voted for ISHST as it has one of my favorite Beatle bass lines.

I find “P.S. I Love You” the most innovative melody on the album; every time I hear it, it surprises me about how neatly it falls into place.

I voted for “I Saw Her Standing There” but it was a really, really hard choice between that and “There’s a Place.” With ISHST, though, I feel as though the count off at the beginning is like the opening chord to “Hard Day’s Night.” You hear it, and you just get energized.

Yeah, those are the two that I was deciding between. The more “hipster” part of me wants to pick the less obvious “There’s a Place,” but I just can’t deny the opening of “I Saw Her Standing There” and the driving pulse of the song.

This . . . and for the same reason.

I actually remember reading somewhere that they borrowed it from a Chuck Berry song. It’s still awesome!

Please Please Me. In this boomer’s opinion it remains the single greatest pop/rock single ever. Great song, arrangement, all four musicians firing on all cylinders. Especially Ringo and Paul.

I just voted for PPM, but FWIW “Anna” is my favorite vocal performance by John.

No contest. It’s the only song I like off the record.

Another vote for the title track. The tight Everly-Brothers-influenced harmonies, the call-response chorus recalling sea chanties (probably heard by Lennon from his sailor father Fred), the wild drum part by Ringo. George Martin called it.

“P.S. I Love You” because it first sounded like “Peanuts, I love you” and later like “Penis, I love you.”

Love Me Do because of the harmonica.

“Boys” is actually a Ringo song…he brought it with him from Rory Storm…

You know, that’s a good point. That harmonica line has got to be one of the most recognizable and memorable harmonica hooks in pop music.