Song of the Day #451: ‘Ticket to Ride’ – The Beatles

tickettoride‘Ticket to Ride,’ another John Lennon triumph from the Help! album, is by all objective measures a wonderful song. But I’m still struck by the uncanny appeal it seems to have for children.

OK, I’m generalizing… my sample size is admittedly small — my own two children and my nephew. But of all the great Beatles songs, including such blatantly kid-friendly fare as ‘Yellow Submarine’ and ‘Octopus’s Garden,’ why would this tune strike such a nerve with my little ones?

My oldest, Sophia, took to the song several years back. It sits on a mix tape surrounded by other songs that caught her fancy at the time, by artists ranging from Lucinda Williams and Josh Rouse to The Dixie Chicks and Kermit the Frog.

Now it’s 3-year-old Fiona’s turn, and she’s picked up the mantle with a vengeance. We can’t go anywhere in my car without playing ‘Ticket to Ride.’ Sophia, amusingly, has now developed an affinity for the Ringo-performed country cover tune ‘Act Naturally,’ which follows ‘Ticket to Ride’ on the album. So we get the twofer every morning on the way to school.

Recently I was in a car accident while driving Fiona to day care. The song playing on my stereo when the accident occurred was, you guessed it, ‘Ticket to Ride.’ After determining that everybody was safe, while sitting around waiting for the police report to be filed, I’m ashamed to admit that I wondered if the accident would turn Fiona off the song. Had it been forever paired up with a traumatic experience in her mind?

Nope. The next morning she barked out the request as usual. And we drove down that same street with the same song playing, thumbing our noses at fate. Maybe kids don’t think that way. Or maybe ‘Ticket to Ride’ is just that damn great a song.

I think I’m gonna be sad,
I think it’s today, yeah.
The girl that’s driving me mad
Is going away.

She’s got a ticket to ride,
She’s got a ticket to ride,
She’s got a ticket to ride,
But she don’t care.

She said that living with me
Was bringing her down yeah.
She would never be free
When I was around.

She’s got a ticket to ride,
She’s got a ticket to ride,
She’s got a ticket to ride,
But she don’t care.

I don’t know why she’s ridin’ so high,
She ought to think twice,
She ought to do right by me.
Before she gets to saying goodbye,
She ought to think twice,
She ought to do right by me.

I think I’m gonna be sad,
I think it’s today yeah.
The girl that’s driving me mad
Is going away, yeah.

She’s got a ticket to ride,
She’s got a ticket to ride,
She’s got a ticket to ride,
But she don’t care.

I don’t know why she’s ridin’ so high,
She ought to think twice,
She ought to do right by me.
Before she gets to saying goodbye,
She ought to think twice,
She ought to do right by me
.
She heard that living with me,
Was bringing her down, yeah.
She would never be free
When I was around.

Ah, she’s got a ticket to ride,
She’s got a ticket to ride,
She’s got a ticket to ride,
But she don’t care.

My baby don’t care, my baby don’t care.
My baby don’t care, my baby don’t care.
My baby don’t care

2 thoughts on “Song of the Day #451: ‘Ticket to Ride’ – The Beatles

  1. Dana says:

    Musically, the song is certainly catchy enough to appeal to kids, especially those with sophisticated taste like ours:)), but I think the lyrical sentiment of a “ticket to ride” is what pushes it over the top for them. What kid doesn’t want that “ticket to ride” a roller coaster, merry go round, etc…For a child, that chorus represents freedom and fun wrapped together in a perfect pop package.

    While the car accident may have been a ride gone awry, Fiona likely associates this song with the freedom and fun of riding in a car with her daddy, and so she wants her ticket to ride so that ride can continue for as long as possible, as I’m sure her daddy does as well:)

  2. Amy says:

    Wow, I just got chills. Have you read The Diving Bell and the Butterfly? The song that is playing on the radio just before Bauby has his massive stroke is “A Day in the Life,” and he reminisces how “Penny Lane” is a song he remembers the school children “shakily” singing in the back of a bus many years before after a particularly traumatic accident. “The Beatles again,” he notes. Then he wonders what songs his son will recall when he’s a man.

    Anyway, I’m sure glad your “Ticket to Ride” episode had a much happier ending than either of those events in Bauby’s life. My guess is that happier outcome is what saved the song for Fiona. Had someone been hurt, I don’t think anyone would want to be listening to that song again. 😦

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