I am looking at "Eight days a week" by the Beatles and here in the B section of the verse there is this "2x and 4x with the chorus" above the vocal melody and I don't know what it means. Can anyone else make sense of it? Also, in the recording I have of this song that top line really is not audible to me. I hear the main melody as the one starting on F# not A (ie: alto voice) and that top line when I play it sounds wrong so I don't know if it is just very soft in the recording. Can anyone else hear it?
It means "second time, fourth time with chorus." This agrees with the fact that the second and fourth times these measures are sung, there is harmony, but if that's really what it means, it's a bit of an odd way to say it, because, while the first and third renditions don't have harmony, they do have multiple voices—singing in unison.
The idea that this indicates when must go on to the chorus isn't borne out by this video, at least, where the bridge follows instances 2 and 3, while 4 is followed by the coda and the end of the song.
Not at all clear. Nothing to do with repeating those bars, though. As in repeating them 2x or 4x. It actually means there's harmony at that part of the song the 2nd and 4th times it comes round. As opposed to single voice (possibly double tracked, more likely unison) 1st and 3rd times. 'To chorus'? 1st and 3rd times will go into another verse, so probably that's what 2x/4x is supposed to signify.
I've also a niggle about the G♭ , maybe G6 after the Bm(?).
Yep, the bracketed notes are those sung in harmony only on 2nd and 4th times. Solved!
Something happens when that section is played the 2nd and 4th time through. That's clear enough. It's also pretty clear that what happens are the extra upper notes.
The only unclear point is what is meant by 'chorus'. Does a choir join in? Luckily we can listen to the record and confirm that it simply means one of the Beatles sings harmony. Is it quite as clear-cut as the music copy (from 'The Beatles - Complete Scores' I think?) says? Possibly not. That book occasionally notates what they think the boys SHOULD have played rather than what they actually did!