It was 55 years ago Sunday (December 6th, 1965) that the Beatles released their groundbreaking sixth album, Rubber Soul in America. Also released in conjunction to the album was the band's first official “double A-sided” single, “We Can Work It Out” backed with “Day Tripper. Rubber Soul featured a staring of instant classics, including “Michelle” — which scored the band the 1967 Grammy for Song Of The Year despite it never being released by the band as a single — “In My Life,” “Drive My Car,” “Nowhere Man,” “Girl,” “I'm Looking Through You,” and “Norwegian Wood (This Bird Has Flown)”– for which George Harrison is often credited for introducing world music into rock by contributing the song's signature sitar part.
In the U.S. “Drive My Car,” “Nowhere Man,” the John Lennon–Paul McCartney–Ringo Starr-written “What Goes On,” and “If I Needed Someone” were left off Rubber Soul and replaced with the Help! holdovers “I've Just Seen A Face” and “It's Only Love.” Rubber Soul marks the first time an outtake from a prior album was included on a new project, with “Wait” originally recorded during the previous spring's Help! sessions but left unissued.
Much the same way Paul McCartney credits the Beach Boys' Pet Sounds as being the inspiration for Sgt. Pepper, Brian Wilson credits Rubber Soul for inspiring Pet Sounds. Rubber Soul was the final album to feature Norman Smith as the Beatles' engineer. He was promoted at EMI Records to producer status and went on to work with Pink Floyd. Save for a few instances, Geoff Emerick went on to be the group's primary engineer until their split.