Song of the Day #4,440: ‘The Ballad of John and Yoko’ – The Beatles

This is a wacky coincidence. I spun the dial on the old Random iTunes Generator just minutes after finishing a 90-minute podcast on the real story behind Yoko Ono’s role in The Beatles’ breakup, and lo and behold, I’m served up ‘The Ballad of John and Yoko.’

The podcast, called You’re Wrong About, features journalists Sarah Marshall and Michael Hobbes digging into topics that have been widely misunderstood. That includes serious issues like sex trafficking and murder rates, and lighter fare such as, well, Yoko’s role in The Beatles’ breakup.

It’s an extremely entertaining and informative podcast, and I highly recommend it.

Today’s song was released in 1969 and was the last Beatles single to reach #1 in the UK. It made it to only #8 in the United States, in part because some radio stations refused to play a song with “Christ” and “crucify” in its chorus. Sigh.

John and Paul recorded this song together, just the two of them, as George and Ringo were unavailable when John’s inspiration hit.

Standing in the dock at Southampton
Trying to get to Holland or France
The man in the mac said, “You’ve got to go back”
You know they didn’t even give us a chance

Christ you know it ain’t easy
You know how hard it can be
The way things are going
They’re gonna crucify me

Finally made the plane into Paris
Honeymooning down by the Seine
Peter Brown called to say
“You can make it O.K
You can get married in Gibraltar, near Spain”

Christ you know it ain’t easy
You know how hard it can be
The way things are going
They’re gonna crucify me

Drove from Paris to the Amsterdam Hilton
Talking in our beds for a week
The news people said, “Say what you doing in bed?”
I said, “We’re only trying to get us some peace”

Christ you know it ain’t easy
You know how hard it can be
The way things are going
They’re gonna crucify me

Saving up your money for a rainy day
Giving all your clothes to charity
Last night the wife said
“Poor boy, when you’re dead
You don’t take nothing with you
But your soul – think!”

Made a lightning trip to Vienna
Eating chocolate cake in a bag
The newspaper said, “She’s gone to his head
They look just like two gurus in drag”

Christ you know it ain’t easy
You know how hard it can be
The way things are going
They’re gonna crucify me

Caught the early plane back to London
Fifty acorns tied in a sack
The men from the press said, “We wish you success
It’s good to have the both of you back”

Christ you know it ain’t easy
You know how hard it can be
The way things are going
They’re gonna crucify me
The way things are going
They’re gonna crucify me

[Outro]

2 thoughts on “Song of the Day #4,440: ‘The Ballad of John and Yoko’ – The Beatles

  1. Dana Gallup says:

    I know the song well, and have heard the title, but somehow never connected the two.

    That does sound like a fascinating podcast.

  2. Peg says:

    I’m always amazed by those kinds of coincidences. Sounds like an interesting podcast.

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