Guitarists and other musicians for more than 40 years -- without success -- have tried to recreate the sound that opens "A Hard Day's Night." While the note played on George Harrison's 12-string Rickenbacker is the most prominent, the two-second duration of the chord is filled with undertones and frequencies that musicians have been unable to identify or recreate.
Now someone has studied the Fourier transform of the note (why this obvious analysis was not done sooner is a mystery to me).
A research student at Dalhousie University, in Canada, used a mathematical calculation known as Fournier Transform to figure out which notes are on the record.
Jason Brown took up the issue in his thesis.
Brown's "Mathematics, Physics and 'A Hard Day's Night'" details what he learned by analyzing the opening chord in a computer sound editing program.
The "mysterious notes," according to Brown's research, come not from guitar notes played by George Harrison or John Lennon or bass notes from Paul McCartney, but a piano played by Beatles producer George Martin.