Songs with Earlier Histories Than the Hit Version

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On the Wings of a Nightingale

First recorded (as a demo) by Paul McCartney (1983).
Hit version by The Everly Brothers (US #50/MOR #9/UK #41/CAN #10/SA #6 1984).

From The Beatles Rarity: “After a long break from recording together, the Everly Brothers got back together in 1983. They began with a reunion concert at London’s Royal Albert Hall in September of that year and then recorded another album together titled EB84 – their first album together in seven years. The lead single was a Paul McCartney composition that he not only contributed for the record, but also plays guitar on, called ‘On the Wings of a Nightingale’ and it went to #9 in the U.S. (Other contributors to the LP included Bob Dylan, Jeff Lynne, Richard Tandy, and producer Dave Edmunds.) McCarthey presented his song to the Everlys in demo form prior to the album recording sessions.

“In his book Tune In: The Bealtes: All These Years, Vol. 1, Beatles historian/biographer Mark Lewisohn quotes Paul’s 1958 recollection after hearing the Everlys’ worldwide #1 hit ‘All I Have To Do Is Dream,’ when he, John and newest Quarrymen member, George Harrison were still in their teens. Paul said ‘When we first heard it, it blew us away.’ On January 24, 1969 during a rehearsal for ‘Two Of Us,’ Paul and John are in a close harmony duet using a single microphone and at one point, just before the third verse, Paul says to John ‘Take it, Phil’ as encouragement to sing it with that Everlys’ vocal feel. If ‘Two Of Us’ was not an Everly Brothers-influenced track, then I don’t know, what is … Paul McCartney mentions the Everlys as “Phil and Don” in lyrics heard during the bridge on his Wings recording “Let ‘Em In” from the 1976 album Wings At The Speed Of Sound.”

The Everly Brothers, “On the Wings of a Nightingale” (1984):

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