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Paul McCartney discussed John Lennon’s role in writing The Beatles’ “I Am the Walrus.” Some of Paul’s comments are a little questionable. Regardless, “I Am the Walrus” is one of the key tracks of John’s career.

Paul McCartney discussed the origin of the laughter from The Beatles’ ‘I Am the Walrus’

During a 2009 interview with Clash, Paul discussed his feelings about “I Am the Walrus.” “I think in a way, for instance something like ‘I Am the Walrus,’ someone like John probably doesn’t get enough credit, because those sessions, those preparatory sessions, were very important because they set the style and often gave very accurate briefs of what we wanted,” he opined.

“For instance, all of John’s ‘Everybody’s got one’ and ‘Ho ho ho, hee hee hee, ha ha ha’ [from ‘I Am the Walrus’], all that stuff was from John at a session with [The Beatles’ producer] George Martin, a preparation session,” he added. “We’d be around at John’s house or George’s house, and he’d say, ‘I want to go, ‘Ha ha ha.’ So, George would write all that in the score, and John would sort of say, ‘Well, it could go like that or like that,’ but we couldn’t write so we needed George to translate our thoughts. That was how it worked, and ‘Eleanor Rigby’ came about that way — it was going to be another classical foray, but different from ‘Yesterday.'”

John Lennon got plenty of credit for ‘I Am the Walrus!’

Paul’s claim that John doesn’t get enough credit for “I Am the Walrus” is a little dubious. The tune might not be as prominent as “Let it Be” or “Hey Jude,” but it garnered critical acclaim. It’s also one of the most well-remembered psychedelic tracks from the 1960s.

Rolling Stone ranked “I Am the Walrus” No. 33 on its list of the 100 best Beatles songs. The publication’s “best of” lists receive a lot of attention, so this honor is a big deal. The magazine ranked the track higher on the list than tunes like “Paperback Writer” and “Eight Days a Week” that were far more mainstream. Rolling Stone praised John for making the track so “woozy.”


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

The Beatles’ song had a huge impact on John Lennon’s career and music in general

More than its critical reception, the importance of “I Am the Walrus” is its place in John’s career. It was the most avant-garde thing John had written up to that point. It paved the way for other experiments from him, such as “Revolution 9” from The White Album, his Yoko Ono collaboration Unfinished Music No. 1: Two Virgins, and his solo hit “#9 Dream.”

There’s also a direct line to be drawn from “I Am the Walrus” and the progressive rock of the 1970s. Specifically, the string arrangement in “I Am the Walrus” paved the way for that genre. It’s no wonder progressive rock pioneers Styx put out a cover of “I Am the Walrus!”

Even if John didn’t get enough credit for “I Am the Walrus,” it encapsulated his later work as a musician.