John Lennon Discussed the Sexual Meaning of a Lyric From The Beatles’ ‘I Am the Walrus’

TL;DR:

  • John Lennon revealed the sexual meaning behind one of the lyrics from The Beatles’ “I Am the Walrus.”
  • John discussed the role of sex in music.
  • “I Am the Walrus” became a minor hit in the United States.
The Beatles ‘ Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, John Lennon, and George Harrison standing in a row
The Beatles’ Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, John Lennon, and George Harrison | John Pratt/Keystone/Getty Images

John Lennon once corrected a journalist who misheard a lyric from The Beatles’ “I Am the Walrus.” He said a line from the song was about sex rather than marijuana. Subsequently, John ruminated on the role of sex in music in general.

John Lennon once combined 30 singers with The Beatles’ rock ‘n’ roll rhythm sections

The book All We Are Saying: The Last Major Interview with John Lennon and Yoko Ono features a 1980 interview. During the interview, John was asked if “I Am the Walrus” included the line “Everybody smoke pot.” “No, no, no,” John replied. “I had this whole choir saying “Everybody’s got one, everybody’s got one.”

John discussed why the lyric was difficult to hear. “But when you get 30 people, male and female, on top of 30 cellos and on top of The Beatles’ rock ‘n’ roll rhythm section, you can’t hear what they’re saying,” he opined.

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John Lennon revealed what a lyric from The Beatles’ ‘I Am the Walrus’ was supposed to mean

John was asked what “everybody’s got.” “Anything,” he said. “You name it. One penis, one vagina, one a**hole — you name it.”

John was asked if the song was about smoking marijuana. “I wouldn’t be so gross,” he said. “Listen, writing about music is like talking about f******. Who wants to talk about it? But you know, maybe some people do want to talk about it. F****** is f******, and not f****** is not f******.”

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How The Beatles’ ‘I Am the Walrus’ performed on the charts in the United States and the United Kingdom

“I Am the Walrus” became a modest hit for the Fab Four. The track hit No. 56 on the Billboard Hot 100, staying on the chart for four weeks. “I Am the Walrus” appeared on Magical Mystery Tour, the soundtrack of the film of the same name. The album topped the Billboard 200 for eight weeks, remaining on the chart for 93 weeks in total.

On the other hand, The Official Charts Company reports “I Am the Walrus” did not chart in the United Kingdom. Meanwhile, Magical Mystery Tour hit No. 31 in the U.K. and stayed on the chart for 10 weeks.

Other artists covered “I Am the Walrus,” including Oasis and Bono. Bono’s cover appeared in Across the Universe, a jukebox musical based around the Fab Four’s songs.

“I Am the Walrus” was somewhat successful even if some of its lyrics were difficult to hear.

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