Firstly,if you need meaning, the reviewer named "Idiots",is most accurate, it was designed by Lennon in response to a school attempting to actually study Beatles lyrics, and dissect them.
But a discussion of this song, is far better, to get into interpretation, and trivia.
You can see that 300 people have reviewed this, and on this site, most great songs, get two or three.
George Martin, in interviews, waxes eloquently, as to how he was very displeased at being presented with this tune, to record. He was ticked at John for writing it, and tried to get the band to discard it, before recording.
He also feels the need to illustrate how he strongly "disapproved of the boy's drug use"(to say nothing of his probably using hot toddies, martinis, tobacco, etc.,unless he didn't) .
But the Beatles had the best wisdom, and spent a lot of time, on this stunning gem.
George Martin, of course, was so, so great, and together, they prepared this classic, with all the wonderful effects.
Last year, I listened to it, about 60 times, in a month, even though of course, I heard it in the day.
It may be a good idea, for fans to provide their own interpretation.
I do,and then the songs carry further significance.
Ever'bodys Right/Ever'bodys Wrong | Reviewer: "Bandit" | 2/7/14
After spending about 2 hours reading everything that everybody had to say about this song, its meaning, where the lyrics came from, etc. I have come to the conclusion that ever'body's right and ever'body's wrong. Hope this clears everything up for y'all, 'cause I'm right, and you know it!
Everyone is Wrong | Reviewer: Stacie Meier | 11/22/13
Being from Liverpool, it is just a bunch of sayings placed together. Sorry to disappointing everyone, but Lennon was correct, it means nothing. He simply took many local saying and twisted them somewhat. If you take apart the song, it does have meaning, the song together means nothing. It's not a protest song, it's not about Sex gender (which I have heard from many), and it has nothing to do with drugs (Although, he admitted to be taking them at time). It at best is about life at the time in a city where most of you never been.
Well, peacekeeper, you've overlooked the fact that the Beatles were not American. I don't read "I Am the Walrus" as a protest song. After scrolling through all the various reviews, I felt like I used to in the old days when coming down off some "groovy" drugs: depressed. Everybody's comments are so obviously sincere but oddly off track. Then it hit me: you could set these reviews to music and make a song just as surreal as "Walrus." The dogs bark, but the caravan travels on.
I Am the Walrus will never go stale. It has been a musical magical mystery tour of a song. I only wish I knew the lyrics behind the scenes and at the end. They're somewhere in the ether I'm sure.
P.S. It's a great song to jog to. You just want to dance as you run.
You are all right (wrong). "I Am the Walrus" is John Lennon, the Beatles, their production team and 1967 recording technology all at their best. I first hear this tune in 1969 - I was 11 - and I loved it then as I do now.
It's great that it's still being discussed! Please keep talking about it, theorizing about it, but most important of all...keep playing it!
I am he...
I love John Lennon. It doesn't matter why he wrote it. It gave a little fun and magic to our lives. At the time, we didn't know what it meant, or why he wrote it, but it held mystique. A wonderful cool mystery that there may be something going on that we don't know.
Nowadays everybody thinks they know everything. Completely boring. No magic, no mystery, no wonder. Just everyone being right. Oh bladi oh blada life goes on bra.
I am the Walrus offers great imagery from Lennons cynical mind.
does anyone remember when we use to listen to this and many more music on the "underground" station when this kind of music wasn't allowed on regular radio lol a.m. things sure have change but any how do you all remember we use to sing at the end of this great song smoke pot, smoke pot, smoke pot, everybody smoke pot hahaha gotta love it good times good memory's from a fan from the start back in the sixties
| Reviewer: HippieHair
Just enjoy the song ... my gawd, why does everything have to have a deep meaninful meaning ... what has happened to some people in their lives that they can't just relax and enjoy nonsensical music for what it is .. and p.s. there is a reason rap rhymes with crap !
...is pretty hilarious. The entire point of the lyrics of this song were to mock the over-analysis of Beatles songs, and John explicitly confirmed this. It's a joke, and if you actually understood Lennon's writing, you would get it. It's funny. Although the cadence of the nonsense is also wonderfully constructed, and that's part of the joy of the song.
When he says 'here's another clue for you all, the walrus was Paul' later in Glass Onion, he is being bitterly sarcastic. There aren't any clues, and John was totally disdainful of the paranoid fans who went searching for profound secret messages in pop songs. To top it off he would later call the 'Paul is dead' crowd 'freaks' in 'How Do You Sleep'.
So please, stop being so paranoid, and enjoy the song.
| Reviewer: Matthew
This song has a code it is about the day paul died becouse at the beging it only menchens 3 not 4 and there waiting for the corners van on a tuesday and how hes crying and how all the police oficers are there. And when they say goog goog joop it was paul's last words "sounds like a over dose" and in a english garden witch is a cematery and its raining and that a walrus is evil and a walrus back then was a mix of drugs and at the end of the song is a choir singing at the church ... And if u are wondering how i know this just picture it while u listen to the song all u haters becousde a good man died that day but it has to take a 15 year old boy to tell u . U must all be ashamed of your selfs shame on all of u
Haters | Reviewer: Matthew | 4/22/12
Fuck yall who hate the beatles u know why ...... They helped lay a foundation of todays music ... And in that progress we lost 2 of them so realy if u rather listen to rap go a head but just remember what i sead ok u haters u hear me fuck ! Rap !
I wonder if in addition to criticizing "the elementary attitude of chanting, 'Hare Krishna,' or putting your faith in one idol." as the anon critic wrote in his excellent review; if there is something of the understanding that the youth of the West were seeking
enlightenment" in the East, and discarding equally mystical writings in the West: Elementary penguins chanting HaRe Krishna MAN YOU SHOULD HAVE SEEN THEM KICKING EDGAR ALLAN POE. Quoth the Raven.
The first verse tells it all. "I am he as you are he as you are me and we are all together." Gifts of the Spirit. Come Together and Fool the Hill are also songs, offering gifts of the spirit. What do I mean? Heard the Word of God, back in June of 1985, while driving eastbound on the old Davison Freeway, in Detroit Michigan. Here's what I heard "You are a good man. All men have purpose. You have purpose. White man help the black man. Organize."
Organize means 'to bring together as One'
I am he as you are he as you are me and we are all together.
idiots. | Reviewer: Anonymous | 10/5/11
John Lennon wrote this song.John was throwing together nonsense lyrics to mess with the heads of scholars trying to dissect The Beatles songs. Lennon told Playboy years later that "I can write that crap too," which is rarely mentioned in relation to this song. Lennon: "The first line was written on one acid trip one weekend. The second line was written on the next acid trip the next weekend, and it was filled in after I met Yoko. Part of it was putting down Hare Krishna. The reference to 'Element'ry penguin' is the elementary attitude of chanting, 'Hare Krishna,' or putting your faith in one idol. Lennon got the idea for the oblique lyrics when he received a letter from a student who explained that his English teacher was having the class analyze Beatles songs. The voices at the end of the song came from a BBC broadcast of the Shakespeare play King Lear, which John Lennon heard when he turned on the radio while they were working on the song. He decided to mix bits of the broadcast into the song, resulting in some radio static and disjointed bits of dialogue. The section of King Lear used is Oswald saying: "Slave, thou hast slain me. Villain, take my purse," which comes in at the 3:52 mark. The idea for the Walrus came from the poem The Walrus and The Carpenter, which is from the sequel to Alice in Wonderland called Through the Looking-Glass. Lennon said: "It never dawned on me that Lewis Carroll was commenting on the capitalist and social system. I never went into that bit about what he really meant, like people are doing with the Beatles' work. Later, I went back and looked at it and realized that the walrus was the bad guy in the story and the carpenter was the good guy. I thought, Oh, s--t, I picked the wrong guy. I should have said, 'I am the carpenter.' When Lennon decided to write confusing lyrics, he asked his friend Pete Shotton for a nursery rhyme they used to sing.
"Yellow matter custard, green slop pie, all mixed together with a dead dog's eye. The song's opening line, "I am he as you are he as you are me and we are all together" is based on the song "Marching To Pretoria," --"I'm with you and you're with me and we are all together."
The choir at the end sings "Oompah, oompah, stick it in your jumper" and "Everybody's got one, everybody's got one." This song helped fuel the rumor that Paul McCartney was dead. It's quite a stretch, but theorists found these clues in the lyrics, none of which are substantiated:
"Waiting for the van to come" means the 3 remaining Beatles are waiting for a police van to come. "Pretty little policemen in a row" means policemen did show up. "Goo goo ga joob" were the final words that Humpty Dumpty said before he fell off the wall and died. During the fade, while the choir sings, a voice says "Bury Me" which is what Paul might have said after he died.
The BBC banned this for the lines "pornographic priestess" and "let your knickers down."
This was released as the B-side to "Hello Goodbye," which Paul McCartney wrote. This angered Lennon because he felt this was much better.
In The Beatles song "Glass Onion," Lennon sang, "The Walrus was Paul." He got a kick out of how people tried to interpret his lyrics and figure out who the Walrus was.
Lennon got the line "Goo Goo Ga Joob" from the book Finnegan's Wake by James Joyce. "Semolina Pilchard" was Detective Sergeant Norman Pilcher, head of the Scotland Yard Drugs Unit. He led the arrests of both John Lennon and Brian Jones et al, before being investigated himself for blackmail and bribery in the '70s. (thanks, Matt - London, England)
Eric Burdon (of Animals and War fame) stated in his biography that he is the Egg Man. It seems he told John Lennon of a sexual experience he was involved in where an egg played a major part. After that, John called him Egg Man.
ELO's song "Hello My Old Friend" has an identical form to this - almost the same tune and orchestration but different words. No wonder Jeff Lynne is sometimes referred to as the 6th Beatle.
In the Anthology version of this song, they experiment with 4 octaves in the intro. Also, just before Lennon says, "Sitting in an English garden waiting for the sun," Ringo does 2 hits on snare and floor tom before hitting crash. (thanks, Riley - Elmhurst, IL)
In an episode of The Simpsons, "The Bart Of War," airing May 18, 2003, Bart and Milhouse break into a secret room in the Flanders' household to discover that Ned is a Beatles fanatic. Bart takes a sip from a can of 40-year-old Beatles-themed novelty soda and quotes this song: "Yellow matter custard dripping from a dead dog's eye," while Milhouse takes a trip and sees various Beatles inspired hallucinations. (thanks, Ashley - Moncton, Canada)
Styx covered this song in 2004 and made a music video for it with a cameo from Billy Bob Thornton. They performed it at Eric Clapton's Crossroads benefit that year. After John Lennon went solo, he wrote a song called "God" where he sang, "I was the walrus, but now I am John."
Artists to cover this song include Guided By Voices, Jackyl, Phil Lesh, Love/Hate, Men Without Hats, Oasis, Oingo Boingo, Spooky Tooth and Styx. The Dead Milkmen recorded a completely different song with the same title in 1987. (thanks, Bertrand - Paris, France)
Frank Zappa and the Mothers Of Invention performed the song as part of their late '70s - early '80s live repertoire, giving it their own comic treatment. It was a favorite of the fans. (thanks, Dan - Milwaukee, WI)
See the Beatles "Sitting in an English garden"
This was the first song the Beatles recorded after Brian Epstein's death. Engineer Geoff Emerick recalled, "the look of emptiness on their faces when they were playing."