Maggie May or Maggie Mae is a traditional Liverpool folk song. It dates back to the 1830s and would have been sung in pubs across England. It was most likely known and sung by all The Beatles’ parents and grandparents. Julia Lennon played the song on the banjo.
The Quarrymen added the song to their repertoire after it became re-popularized by The Viper Skiffle Group. They recorded a “clean” version in 1957. It was released as the B-side to Cumberland Gap and reached number ten on the UK Singles chart.
The song was also part of the repertoire of The Eddie Clayton Skiffle Group.The Beatles recorded the song during the Let It Be sessions in 1969. An extract from the rehearsals was included on the Fly On The Wall disc included with the 2003 album Let It Be…Naked. An edited version appears on the 1970 album Let It Be. John Lennon recorded a version in 1979 and that later appeared on The John Lennon Anthology. The Quarrymen covered the song in 2004 and their version was released on the album Songs We Remember. A live version recorded by The Searchers at The Iron Door in 1963 was released in 2002.
Now Hear This : Maggie Mae – The Beatles (1970)
Maggie Mae – John Lennon (1998)
Maggie Mae – The Searchers (2002)
Fly On The Wall – The Beatles (2003)
Maggie May – The Quarrymen (2004)