“And I Love Her” was Paul McCartney’s first ballad.
Though John Lennon may have helped a bit with the “middle eight” – the part that starts: “A love like ours, could never die…” – this song was the first in a long line of melodically-gorgeous songs that made Paul McCartney… well, Paul McCartney.
The Beatles recorded “And I Love Her” at Abbey Road Studios in London over three days of recording sessions, February 25 – 27, 1964. The song was released as the fifth cut on the first side of the album A Hard Day’s Night on July 10, 1964. The recording features an outstandingly-perfect guitar part created and performed by George Harrison on a Ramirez classical guitar.
When a song has the kind of melody that “And I Love Her” has, it is possible for a gifted instrumentalist to forgo the lyrics and create an arrangement of the song wherein his or her instrument “sings” the song.
Such a gifted instrumentalist is guitarist Pat Metheny.
In 2011, Pat Metheny released the album What’s It All About.
The album contains 10 original arrangements of some of Metheny’s all-time favorite Pop songs. Metheny performs these arrangements on a variety of acoustic instruments, the primary instrument being a “Nashville-tuned baritone acoustic guitar.”
Track 10 is his rendition of “And I Love Her.”
Here, for your Valentine’s Day listening pleasure, is a beautiful video of Pat Metheny performing his (in my mind) dazzling arrangement of this classic love song.
Happy Valentine’s Day to you and yours… and mine.