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Top of the Charts: “I Want to Hold Your Hand” by The Beatles

Feb. 1, 1964 - Hitting the top spot on the Billboard Hot 100 today is “I Want to Hold Your Hand,” by The Beatles. It is the group’s first American number-one hit.

With advance orders exceeding one million copies in the U.K., “I Want to Hold Your Hand” would have gone straight to the top of the British charts on its day of release there (Nov. 29, 1963) had it not been blocked by the group's first million-seller, “She Loves You.” Taking two weeks to dislodge its predecessor, “I Want to Hold Your Hand” stayed at number one in the U.K. for five weeks.

The song was composed by John Lennon and McCartney. It has no real lead singer, as Lennon and McCartney sing alternately in unison and in harmony with each other.

The Beatles recorded “I Want to Hold Your Hand” at EMI Studios on October 17, 1963. The song, along with the single’s B-side, “This Boy,” was the first Beatles song to be recorded with four-track technology.


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