For You Blue

Album: Let It Be (1970)
Charted: 1
  • songfacts ®
  • Artistfacts ®
  • Lyrics
  • George Harrison wrote this. It was inspired by his wife, Pattie.
  • A little after half way through the song, John Lennon makes a reference to Elmore James, a Blues musician: "Elmore James got nothin' on this." If you listen to the song "Madison Blues" by Elmore James, the tune is very similar to "For You Blue." >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Ben - Encinitas, CA
  • John Lennon played the slide guitar part. The Beatles performed this in their last movie, Let It Be, and Lennon can be seen using a shotgun shell for the slide.
  • The version on Anthology 3 and also the Let It Be... Naked album are different takes from earlier in the January 25, 1969 session (1/25/69) when this was recorded. The Naked version is the same one seen in the Let It Be film. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Bertrand - Paris, France
  • Harrison played this on his 1974 Dark Horse tour.
  • This hit #1 along with "The Long and Winding Road," which was its A-side. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Adrian - Wilmington, DE
  • This was originally titled "George's Blues." >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Bertrand - Paris, France
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Comments: 41

  • Josh from Arizona, UsaHi - regarding the spoken words mid-song, doesn't it occur during the keyboard solo? I had always thought that it says "Elmore (?) James got nothing on this spinet". I'm listening now to the Naked version as someone had helpfully recommended, and it still seems that way to me. Is there a video or an interview which clarifies this? Am I just missing something? At a quick initial look, I don't see any others who see it this way.
  • Marge from Chicago, Il@Ben - I was not familiar with Elmore James' song "Madison Blues" until now. So I took a listen, and you are right. George Harrison's "Yer Blue" sounds a lot like this song (the music). It sounds like Harrison just slowed the music down, while keeping the same beat to James' song. Thank you for the enlightenment!
    Marge, Chicago, IL
  • Jim from Indio, CaThat "tack piano" sound of Paul's piano actually came from him weaving some paper between the piano strings so they'd "buzz" after they were struck. Since this was song was recorded in Apple Studios, they didn't have access to the jangle/tack pianos that were available at EMI.
  • George from Glen Burnie, MdDon, John plays slide guitar. It's proven in the movie, "Let It Be".
  • Tom from Standrews, United KingdomThis is my favourite Harrison/Beatles song - McCartney made a good job of singing it at the Concert for George as well.
  • Ciara from Schenectaty, Ny@ Marc: Instead of "hop cat hop", I thought George said "Bob can't hop".
  • Ciara from Schenectaty, Ny@ Mem: Really? I thought he said "Elmore James got nothing on this fella".
  • George from Belleville, NjA smooth blues number.Quite catchy and easy to listen to.Harrison was really developing into a great songwriter himself.Their songs were all high quality whether it was Lennon or McCartney or Harrison doing the writing.
  • Dnnz from Aqp, PeruIt's George actually who says that to praise John's slide guitar
  • Mem from Melbourne, AustraliaHave a closer listen to what george says, i think its elmore james has got nothing on this failure
  • Theresa from Murfreesboro, TnCute love song. George Harrison wrote some amazing songs.
  • Brad from Hickory, NcLennon did perform the "slide" portion of this song. It doesn't look like one, but the sound is of a "resonator" guitar. Harrison played acoustic and did the vocals including that famous line, "Elmore James got nothing on this, baby".
  • Ken from Louisville, KyThe working title of this was "George's Blues", referring to it being a "12 bars blues" riff. It was the only time even known where John played slide guitar - he did it sitting down with the guitar in his lap, like country musicians do with steel slide guitars.
  • Krissy from Boston, Maunique sound
  • Krissy from Boston, MaI love this song. I love the way George sang it. I love that it has a unique song to it. An amazing song by amazing artists.
  • Will from Midland, MiThis is one of my favorite Harrison songs. The normal version of this is okay, but the Let It Be...Naked version is awsome. The gutairs' noise has been restored which shows how much skill has been placed into the guitars. On the Let It Be...naked version George clearly says "Elmore James got nothing on this baby" and chuckles a little.
  • P J from Okc, OkGeorge played this on his "Dark Horse" tour
    in 1974. Sounded great then too!
  • Brian from Sydney, CanadaPaul plays this on the 'Concert For George'. It's the first song he does. Paul and Ringo do a little look of recognition when they both say the line, "Play the twelve bar blues" during the guitar solo just like George did it when they first recorded it- quite touching.
  • Ian from Lethbridge, CanadaDominic, Beatles 1 has 27 tracks, but they had more than 27 #1 hits. However, they couldn't include ALL their #1 hits without making the album too large, so they had to exclude some.
  • Joey from Nowhere Land, Cayes, john did play on this song.

    go to: youtube.com
    look up Paul McCartney and on like the second page it has the 'For You Blue' video, and John plays the type of guitar that you play in your lap..a slide guitar or something like that
  • Sarah from Pittsburgh, PaGeez, do you guys ALWAYS need me to sort out your disputes? Yes, John Lennon did play on this. Here's a clip of them playing it, in the beginning George tells John some directions: http://www.beatlesjpgr.com/MP3%20DE%20THE%20BEATLES/7/For%20You%20Blue1.mp3. Durrr.
  • Dirk from Nashville, TnThat reference to Elmore James is being uttered by the only guy with a microphone--George Harrison. Not John Lennon. ("Elmore James got nothing on THIS, baby!")
  • Stefanie from Rock Hill, ScIs it just me, or is the Let It Be Naked version different. I don't remember.
  • Bill from Southeastern Part Of, FlI always thought George was saying, "That aboy, James..." James is Paul McCartney's first name.
  • Kalissa from New York City, NyThis is probably a really stupid question,
    but is "blue" referring to anyone or is it just a rhyming thing? I would be really interested to know
    if anyone can help.
  • Adam from Rochester, Nyanother great song by harrison, kind of laid back and relaxing, i love it
  • Bizgotti from Toronto, Canadaat the start of the track i think one of them says "the queen says no to pot smoking fbi memeber"
  • Nessie from Sapporo, JapanA pretty standard blues number. I like the rinky-dink piano.
  • Ernesto from Mexicali, MexicoIn Get Back Lennon play slide guitar, too. You can see it in the Let it be movie.
  • Mango from Asdf, WyWhat do they say at the beginning of the song about pot-smoking FBI members?
  • Marina from Seattle, WaEven though Harrison sounds as if he's talking to the other Beatles during the songs ("go Johnny, go!", etc.), he actually rerecorded the vocals on his own, so he was really talking to himself.
  • Alan from New Baltimore, MiJohn played it, George said it.
    Not all the Beatle #1's could fit on the #1 album; there were too many to include all the flip sides. Strawberry Fields, Rain, She's A Woman, P.S. I Love You, Please Please Me and Twist and Shout also missed the cut.
  • Marc from Philadelphia, PaIt is John playing slide gutair in the song..You see him playing in the movie and he refers to it in a few interviews.

    "Hop Cat Hop"...."Go Johnny go" and Elmore James got nuffin on this baybee" were all George and overdubbed AFTER John had quit the Beatles..They dubbed bass and vocals on this and I Me Mine in January 1970 with only George , Paul and Ringo..John had quit and was asked to keep silent about it.
  • Dominic from Pittsburgh, PaIf this was a 1 hit, why is it not on Beatles 1?
  • Martin from London, EnglandOne of The Beatles' most under-rated songs (in fact, much of George's and Ringo's contributions to the group were under-rated). It is definitely John on slide guitar (as evidenced in the movie); George plays acoustic. Yes, it's George who says "Elmore James got nothing on this baby!" and that reference and the line "Go Johnny, go" would seem to be words of encouragement to Lennon, who was ambivalent (at best) about the song and the whole "Let It Be" project (and, indeed about being a Beatle fullstop!). [Also, "well done" Paul for not screwing the song up at 'The Concert For George' at the Royal Albert Hall tribute.]
  • Paulo from New York, NyYes, it's George with the "Elmore James" line, or at least it sounds a lot more like George.
  • Lucas Burns from Folsom, CaWhen george says "Go Johnny go", he could be referring to the song Johnny B. Goode.
  • Ray from West Lebanon, NhIt WAS John playing slide guitar. He was seen playing it in the film, "Let It Be", and for what's it worth, George is the one commenting on Elmore James.
  • Robb from Hamburg, NyWell Lennon is obviously playing the slide part because midway through the slide section George says "Go Johhny, Go".
  • Robb from Hamburg, NyIf u listen more closely, it sounds more like Geroge saying that bit about Elmore James.
  • Don from Rapid City, SdI cannot prove, but seriously doubt, that John played the slide part in this song. First of all, it sounds so much like George's style and, secondly, can you name me one other instance of Lennon playing slide?
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