Oh, the records that this song broke. And I’m not talking about the kind of record that you play on a phonograph. I’m talking about records like the fact that this is the third number one consecutively by the same artist and that had never happened before. The most ever done was two weeks, by Elvis Presley and, of course, the Beatles. Now, the Beatles broke their own record by taking the top spot for the third time without another artist coming in.
But, it gets even better. It was while “Can’t Buy Me Love” was at the top, during the week of April 4, 1964 to be exact, that the Beatles held down the top five spots on the Top 40. The Top 5 for that week were; 1) “Can’t Buy Me Love,” 2) “Twist and Shout,” 3) “She Loves You,” 4) “I Want to Hold Your Hand,” and 5) “Please Please Me.” No one had ever done that before and no one has done it since. It’s unlikely that the feat will ever happen again.
That’s not all, the second week it was at the top, as more and more Beatles songs were released, they had 14 songs in the Hot 100 at the same time. Again, no one had ever done that before and no one has done it since. “Can’t Buy Me Love” also took the biggest jump into the number one spot of any song in history. It debuted at number 27 and the second week on the chart it leaped to number one.
“Can’t Buy Me Love” was written by Paul McCartney in a hotel in Paris, although the song is credited to Lennon-McCartney as most songs were during that period. The group was staying at the George V hotel and had an upright piano brought into the room, so they could continue to write even when they were on tour. Paul sat down and wrote “Can’t Buy Me Love.” After, some tweaking, they got a song that they liked.
There were some who claimed that Paul was talking about a prostitute. Paul says absolutely not. He just wanted to say that material things were important, but they couldn’t give you the thing we all need the most, love.
The song first appeared on an album later in the summer of 1964 on the A Hard Day’s Night album. It was included in the movie of the same name and is played over a sequence where the four band members are shown running and leaping in a sport’s field. Just doing the silliness that they became known for in their movies.
“Can’t Buy Me Love” entered the pop charts at number 27, the next week it was number one and it stayed there for four weeks.