On 11 October 1962 The Beatles made their debut on the UK charts with the single “Love Me Do.” John Lennon and Paul McCartney wrote it in 1958 when John was 17 and Paul was 16. They made time for songwriting by skipping school. They had written songs before, but “Love Me Do” was the first one they liked enough to record. The song peaked at number 17.
In 1964 it was released in the United States where it became a number one hit. It also topped the Australian and New Zealand charts. Re-released in 1982 as part of EMI’s Beatles 20th anniversary, “Love Me Do” re-entered the UK charts and peaked at number 4.
The Beatles came very close to releasing another song as their first single. At their September 4 recording session their Manager, George Martin decided their first single should be a song called “How Do You Do It?” which was written by someone else. The Beatles were not happy but did some lackluster takes of the song before they were allowed to record “Love Me Do.” Eventually, Martin changed his mind and went with “Love Me Do.” “How Do You Do It?” became a hit for Gerry & the Pacemakers in 1964.