Beatles: Come Together Meaning
Song Released: 1969
Covered By: Taylor John Williams (2014), Gary Clark Jr. (2017)
Come Together Lyrics
Well, since I'm old, I remember when this song was released way back in the Fall of 1969 which was also the time of Paul McCartney's "death". Since the song was a hit at the exact time of the "news" about Mr. McCartney's "demise", it MUST be another "clue".
The interpretation of the song (at the time) was that Paul succumbed to an illness.
"Spinal cracker" - reference to a spinal tap test.
"Hold you in his armchair you can feel his disease".
"Early warning" - notification of a medical diagnosis".
"Muddy water" - when they view a spinal tap, if the fluid is clear, you're healthy, if the fluid is murky ("muddy") you've got a problem.
"One and one and one is three" - there's only THREE Beatles, because Mister McCartney is no longer with us.
"Got to be goog-looking" - Paul was the good-looking one.
"Cause he's so hard to see" - it's difficult to see someone when they're dead.
"Come Together, right now over me" - An invitation to those people "in the know", that in order to see Paul, you'll have to go his grave site.
anonymous Aug 24th, 2016 8:58pm report
I love these interpretations, and they sound correct as far as being about the band members. Thank you all.
But here's a question for you: why did Lennon claim the song lyrics were intentional nonsense? I find that to be the case with several Beatles songs, as well as with some of Paul's post-Beatles music (e.g., his absurd claim that "Jet" was about his pet dog running away from home, when if you substitute the name John for Jet, and think of the effect Yoko had on Paul and John's relationship, every line of the song makes perfect sense).
anonymous Jun 11th, 2016 6:26am report
The song was written by John Lennon (but credited to Lennon/McCartney) and got started by a request from Timothy Leary for a “campaign song” for Leary's intended 1970 run for California Governor, against Ronald Reagan.
Leary announced his candidacy on May 19, 1969. The campaign slogan was, "Come together, join the party." Shortly after his announcement, Leary joined Lennon and Yoko at their famous Montreal Bed-In, held on June 1, 1969.
Leary’s bid for California Governor ended when he received a 20 year jail sentence for two previous marijuana possession charges - 10 years for a 1965 possession conviction, plus another 10 years for a 1968 conviction.
Lennon has said he tried but failed to write the requested "campaign song” and instead created "Come Together”, in the studio, during the 1969 Abbey Road recording sessions. Those session happened between February 22 and August 20th. The completed Abbey Road album was released on September 26, 1969.
Specifically, “Come Together” is said to have been produced by George Martin and recorded at the end of July 1969.
The song title “Come Together” is actually Lennon’s derivation of Leary's intended campaign slogan, "Come together, join the party."
Epilogue: After the release of “Come Together” Lennon was sued by Morris Levy because of some shared lyrics and a similar sound to Chuck Berry's 1956 song, ”You Can't Catch Me". Levy was the publisher of this Berry song. The case took time to settle and Levy eventually won a small, $80,000+ award.
anonymous May 19th, 2016 5:14am report
I imagined that Each Line was about someone else.Not just the band but people they worked with. Because some lines don't seem to refer to anyone we know,"he got ju-ju eyeball?" Yet dat "one holy roller" sounds like George. I can see them in the studio not being able to get any work done.John and Paul always dressed well. "he wear no shoe shine" dat one come to work like a slob, dat one shoot coka cola.(you hadda be there) John was "the joker". He referred to himself that way, and was even called that in other people's songs. He was the funny one. I think that line was his exaspiration from people thinking he was a clown and couldn't get down to work.(let it be maybe).It might not be a studio scene, but it could be lot of different people that were influencing his life- good or bad.He may have wrote the song just for himself, and why not? He's allowed. I still love listening to it. It one great fuckin' song.
anonymous Mar 15th, 2016 3:32pm report
From what I understand, they or rather one of them was asked to write a campaign slogan about coming together, and couldn't come up with anything, so they just wrote a completely random and nonsensical song. For the fun of it. I have found, doing some research into their music, that most of their songs that sound like nonsense, really are just that......
anonymous Dec 24th, 2015 12:15pm report
According to Paul the song is just nonsense. That's all folk!
anonymous Jun 29th, 2015 6:27pm report
Here's what I have trouble with. I agree that the lyrics describe each one of the band members (though my interpretations vary a little bit), but if the verse 3 is about John, why would he insult himself? Why would he say "he bad production"? That doesn't sound very complimentary. Or "he got Ono sideboard"? I'm pretty sure he didn't see Yoko as that big a distraction. And why would he refer to himself as a "spinal cracker". Did he see himself as a hardass? I dunno it just doesn't make sense.
This interpretation has been marked as poor. view anyway
anonymous Feb 25th, 2015 2:50am report
What a load of old bollocks! You guys read too much into things... chill out and sing the song! :)
anonymous Feb 20th, 2015 2:29pm report
I think this interpretation is totally wrong and clueless you better do more research buddy.
anonymous Feb 17th, 2015 2:39pm report
Funny, I always thought it was a dirty, nasty song describing sexual perversions. More likely it was about nothing in particular, just some weird sounding rhymes set to music, with all sorts of interpretations possible.
anonymous Jan 31st, 2015 1:29am report
Wow... it has been about 10 years now since I first wrote my thoughts on this song years ago. (my original post I've quoted below)
I thought I ought to comment again as I posted in something of a rush the first time.
I am surprised at how much negative interpretation has come from this song. To me, it was just a lyrical and perhaps slightly mysterious way of describing the band members. I am sure it was meant to be complimentary if anything. It was John's appreciation of the band.
"Here comes old flat top"... I attributed this verse instantly to George as it references the style of guitar that he favoured. His first guitar, bought for him by his father, was a flat top and much enjoyed as it produced a bright *twang* like tone. He continued to use the flat top style guitar throughout much of his musical career.
Juju/Joo Joo Eyeball. Juju meaning mystical or spirtual or spooky even. The singularity of the eyeball suggesting just one. Juju eyeball is the 3rd eye. It's well known that George went to India etc.. did his whole *holy roller* thing.
The second verse is a little less exciting I think.
'He wear no shoeshine' ... The song is from the Album 'Abbey Road'. On the cover, Paul is wearing no shoes. Maybe because he had TOEJAM football.. lol. Seriously though, Toejam Football is Rugby, which Paul loved and John actually disliked. "Monkey Finger" is a compliment on how dextrous he could play. "He shoot Coca Cola.." was a reference on how 'straight' he was. (comparatively no doubt)
3rd verse is John, perhaps being a little disillusioned with himself.. Did he really wear the corporate GUMBOOT..?? Maybe he wore them to wade through corporate garbage.
4th verse... Ringo. This verse is again meant to be complimentary.
Seems that little is known about Ringo, but he was quite an active person really. He often drummed for other bands and had a keen interest in acting and hoped to move into that direction eventually. He was a happy person who was also had good common sense and 'foresight'. "He rollercoaster" was a reference to the many activities that he had going at once. "early warning" his precognition and instinct. "Mojo filter" his humor and ability to lift the atmosphere and divert attention away from negative.
Again, just thoughts and who really knows... perhaps we should ask Paul or Ringo. :)
This is just me... but listening to the lyrics, I wonder if John is not describing the Beatles in the song... 4 verses, 4 beatles... The 3rd verse (walrus gumboot) describes John (ono sideboards, walrus gumboot, feel his disease), the first vers (here come ol flattop) describes George (joo-joo eyeball, holy roller, He got hair down to his knee
Got to be a joker he just do what he please), the 4th verse perhaps about Ringo (early warning, one and one and one is three could deal with drums and rythm, and Got to bee good looking cause he's so hard to see is because Ringo was always behind the drumset.), and the 2nd verse about Paul (monkey finger, like a bass player,) But I don't know. I'm just playin around.
anonymous Aug 3rd, 2014 8:13pm report
There is not one credible interpretation here.
donna.angotti.1 Jul 4th, 2014 7:42am report
The song is about John. No other Beatle is referenced. John was very clear in interviews that he always wrote about himself. All versus are about John himself. This is the only Beatles song that John performed after the breakup. He did that because the song is just about him. He would not have performed a song about the other Beatles, let alone one calling them to come together, after the breakup.
The individual phrases are as analyzed by many people before me, however they are about John's view of himself. Some of the lyrics have drug references and are tantamount to a confession of drug use, drug addiction being his disease. Others have simultaneous sexual innuendos or meanings.
This song is a classic example of a John song about John. The other example is Strawberry Fields Forever.
In this regard, John had a "messiah" complex and had a nickname Johnny Cat from the song "Three Cool Cats" performed (but not written)by the Beatles, which was shortened to JC. John Lennon, in his psychology and his art, merged his identity with that of Jesus Christ. Hence, we see his Jesus look with long hair and white suits as on the cover of Abbey Road and lyrics like "The way things are going, they're going to crucify me" in the Ballad of John and Yoko. In "Come Together", John assumes his "Messiah" persona, plays the role of Jesus, speaks as Jesus and tells the listener to come together over the Christ. As in Asinov's story "Monkey Fingers", John views himself as performing the function of the monkey's fingers for Jesus to relay Jesus's message. Thus, the song has numerous simultaneous meanings: biographical to himself including his drug use and relationship with Yoko, biographical to Jesus, spiritual and sexual (he likens divine love as analogous to romantic love). These are not alternate meanings, they are simultaneous meanings. The song operates on many levels and is a work of genius. "One and One and One is three" refers to the Holy Trinity: the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. In his art, John blurred art and reality, creating a play within a play within a play, constructing and deconstructing theatrical conventions and leaving it to the public to determine the distinction between art and reality and where to draw the line.
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