Mother Nature’s Son

“‘Mother Nature’s Son’ [Paul McCartney’s song – Ed] was from a lecture of Maharishi where he was talking about nature, and I had a piece called ‘I’m Just A Child Of Nature’, which turned into Jealous Guy years later. Both inspired from the same lecture of Maharishi.”John Lennon (1077)
“I’ve always loved the Nat King Cole song called Nature Boy: ‘There was a boy, a very strange and gentle boy…’ He loves nature, and ‘Mother Nature’s Son’ was inspired by that song. I’d always loved nature, and when Linda and I got together we discovered we had this deep love of nature in common. There might have been a little help from John with some of the verses.”Paul McCartney (1140)

Come Together

“The thing was created in the studio. It’s gobbledygook; Come Together was an expression that Leary [Timothy Leary who stood against Ronald Reagan in the race to be Governor of California – Ed] had come up with for his attempt at being president or whatever he wanted to be, and he asked me to write a campaign song. I tried and tried, but I couldn’t come up with one. But I came up with this, Come Together, which would’ve been no good to him – you couldn’t have a campaign song like that, right?”John Lennon (1077)

Day Tripper

“It’s just a rock ‘n’ roll song. Day trippers are people who go on a day trip, right? Usually on a ferryboat or something. But it was kind of – you know, you’re just a weekend hippie. Get it? [Lennon also said “It wasn’t a serious message song. It was a drug song. In a way, it was a day tripper – I just liked the word” – Ed].”John Lennon (1077)
“‘Day Tripper’ was to do with tripping. Acid was coming in on the scene, and often we’d do these songs about ‘the girl who thought she was it’… But this was just a tongue-in-cheek song about someone who was a day tripper, a Sunday painter, Sunday driver, somebody who was committed only in part to the idea. Whereas we saw ourselves as full-time trippers, fully committed drivers, she was just a day tripper.”Paul McCartney (1140)

Dear Prudence

“Written in India. A song about Mia Farrow’s sister, who seemed to go slightly barmy, meditating too long, and couldn’t come out of the little hut that we were livin’ in. They selected me and George to try and bring her out because she would trust us. If she’d been in the West, they would have put her away. We got her out of the house. She’d been locked in for three weeks and wouldn’t come out, trying to reach God quicker than anybody else. That was the competition in Maharishi’s camp: who was going to get cosmic first. What I didn’t know was I was already cosmic.”John Lennon (1077)

Doctor Robert

“Mainly about drugs and pills. It was about myself. I was the one that carried all the pills on tour. Well, in the early days. Later on the roadies did it. We just kept them in our pockets loose. In case of trouble.”John Lennon (1077)
“John and I thought it was a funny idea: the fantasy doctor who would fix you up by giving you drugs, the song was a parody on that idea. It’s just a piss-take. As far as I know, neither of us ever went to a doctor for those kinds of things. But there was a fashion for it and there still is. Change your blood and have a vitamin shot and you’ll feel better.”Paul McCartney (1140)

Don’t Let Me Down

“It was a very tense period: John was with Yoko and had escalated to heroin and all the accompanying paranoias and he was putting himself out on a limb. I think that as much as it excited and amused him, and the same time it secretly terrified him. So ‘Don’t Let Me Down’ was a genuine plea… It was saying to Yoko, ‘I’m really stepping out of line on this one. I’m really letting my vulnerability be seen, so you must not let me down.’ I think it was a genuine cry for help. It was a good song.”Paul McCartney (1140)

Drive My Car

“‘Drive my car’ was an old blues euphemism for sex, so in the end all is revealed. Black humour crept in and saved the day. It wrote itself then. I find that very often, once you get the good idea, things write themselves. This nice tongue-in-cheek idea came and suddenly there was a girl there, the heroine of the story, and the story developed and had a little sting in the tail like ‘Norwegian Wood’ had, which was ‘I actually haven’t got a car, but when I get one you’ll be a terrific chauffeur.”Paul McCartney (1140)

Eight Days A Week

“I remember writing that with John, at his place in Weybridge, from something said by the chauffeur who drove me out there. John had moved out of London to the suburbs. I usually drove myself there, but the chauffeur drove me out that day and I said, ‘How’ve you been?’ – ‘Oh, working hard,’ he said, ‘working eight days a week.’ I had never heard anyone use that expression, so when I arrived at John’s house I said, ‘Hey, this fella just said, “eight days a week”.’ John said, ‘Right – “Ooh I need your love, babe…” and we wrote it. We were always quick to write. We would write on the spot. I would show up, looking for some sort of inspiration; I’d either get it there, with John, or I’d hear someone say something.”Paul McCartney (1143)

Eleanor Rigby

“While I was fiddling on a chord some words came out: ‘Dazzie-de-da-zu picks up the rice in the church where a wedding has been…’ This idea of someone picking up rice after a wedding took it in that poignant direction, into a ‘lonely people’ direction. I thought, I swear, that I made up the name Eleanor Rigby like that. I remember quite distinctly having the name Eleanor, looking around for a believable surname and then wandering around the docklands in Bristol and seeing the shop there [Rigby & Evens Ltd, Wine & Spirit Shippers – Ed]. But it seems that up in Woolton Cemetery, where I used to hang out a lot with John, there’s a gravestone to an Eleanor Rigby. Apparently, a few yards to the right there’s someone called McKenzie.”Paul McCartney (1143)
“When I was really little I lived on what we call a housing estate which is like the project. There were a lot of old ladies and I enjoyed sitting around with these older ladies because they they had these great stories, in this case about World War II. One in particular who I used to kind of just visit and go shopping for her – she couldn’t get out to anywhere, so I had that figure in my mind of a sort of lonely old lady. Over the years I’d met a couple others and I don’t know maybe the loneliness made me sort of empathise with them. I thought it was a great character so I started this song about a lonely old lady who picks up the rice in the church, who never really gets the dreams in her life and then I added in the the priest, the vicar, Father McKenzie and so there was just the two characters. So it was like writing a short story but it was based basically on these old ladies that I had known as a kid. There is a kind of strange story about that [the name Eleanor Rigby – Ed]. We’d been working with an actress called Eleanor Bron in The Beatles film ‘Help’. I like the name Eleanor. I was looking for this Eleanor Pap-pap to make the rhythm so I’m looking for this nice surname and I happened to be in Bristol and I saw a shop that said Rigby . So now I had the name of my main character but then years later somebody else is researching this and they said, “You know in that village where John used to live? There’s a graveyard in the church and there is a gravestone there to an Eleanor Rigby”. So I said did I subconsciously know that name why would I go around searching for it? I don’t know, I think it’s maybe a coincidence but there is a gravestone in Liverpool in a place called Woolton where me and John met.”Paul McCartney (1188)

Got To Get You Into My Life

“‘Got To Get You Into My Life’ was one I wrote when I had first been introduced to pot. I’d been a rather straight working-class lad but when we started to get into pot it seemed to me to be quite uplifting. I didn’t have a hard time with it and to me it was mind-expanding, literally mind-expanding. So ‘Got To Get You Into My Life’ is really a song about that, it’s not to a person, it’s actually about pot. It’s saying, I’m going to do this. This is not a bad idea. So it’s actually an ode to pot, like someone else might write an ode to chocolate or a good claret.”Paul McCartney (1140)

Good Night

“‘Good Night’ was written for Julian the way ‘Beautiful Boy’ was written for Sean, but given to Ringo and possibly overlush.”John Lennon (1077)

Everybody’s Got Something To Hide Except Me And My Monkey

“It was about me and Yoko. Everybody seemed to be paranoid except for us two, who were in the glow of love. Everything is clear and open when you’re in love. Everybody was sort of tense around us: you know, ‘What is she doing here at the session? Why is she with him?’ All this sort of madness is going on around us because we just happened to want to be together all the time.”John Lennon (1077)