Clearly, there was no way that Paul was going to let his partner get away with "If I Fell"
as the star-ballad of AHDN
without giving him a run for his money. With "And I Love Her", he achieved the objective fairly and squarely: a multi-goal-draw match.
Leaving aside their dispute as to who came up with the middle eight, this is another of the band's most enduring — and endearing — slowies. It even had Ringo ditch the drumkit completely for the first time, accompanying it just with bongos and claves.
There's a warmth and richness in McCartney's voice on this track which he'd never previously achieved: maturity, I guess. His growing maturity as a songwriter is also very clear. "I consider it his first 'Yesterday'
", said John; though I personally consider "And I Love Her" far the superior song in every way: vocally, melodically and in its lyrical imagery.
The delicate acoustic riff is dreamy enough in itself, but it's when Harrison's twinkling Spanish pizzicato comes in to give his everything for the stars that shine that the whole thing really starts to sparkle. Through the key-shifting solo and the fret-run back into the closing repeat verse, right down to that decisive closing chord, his playing is absolutely outstanding here. A German stereo mix, with added guitar accents and an extended ending, later showed up on the US Rarities
George Martin's orchestral score arrangement appeared on the A Hard Day's Night
album version released in America (god bless ya!), becoming the first of a multitude of covers: amongst them one gender-bender: Esther Phillips' "And I Love Him"
(rated 'amazing', by mutual Beatle consent) — and some real genre-benders: from cabaret croon — best left unexplored — to skanky reggae.
A song like this will never die...