002 Look At Him Working - Writing the string score for "Eleanor Rigby"

A page from George Martin’s handwritten manuscript for “Eleanor Rigby”

A page from George Martin’s handwritten manuscript for “Eleanor Rigby”

George Martin’s score for “Eleanor Rigby” builds on the classical string quartet form that the producer introduced The Beatles to on the song “Yesterday.” In this episode, we examine the writing and recording of the score with cellist Karen Ray, and we also consider Martin’s unusual source of inspiration for this dramatic piece of music.


“The Road,” from Fahrenheit 451 by Bernard Herrmann

“Pavane for a Dead Princess” by Maurice Ravel

“The Murder” from Psycho by Bernard Herrmann

The “Little” Fugue in G minor, by Johann Sebastian Bach, performed by Dario Ronchi

“Help Me Rhonda” by The Beach Boys

“What A Friend We Have In Jesus” by Matt Lemmler


Lewisohn, Mark. The Complete Beatles Recording Sessions.

Martin, George. All You Need Is Ears.

Martin, George. Playback.

Martin, George. With A Little Help From My Friends.

Miles, Barry. Many Years From Now.

Porter, Steven Clark. Rhythm and Harmony in the music of The Beatles (PhD dissertation, 1977)

Rebello, Stephen. Alfred Hitchcock and the Making of Psycho.

Ryan, Kevin and Kehew, Brian. Recording The Beatles.

Shotton, Pete.  In My Life.

Smith, Steven C.  A Heart at Fire’s Center.