Tuesday, July 16, 2019


Four and a half years after they first appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show and charmed teenie-boomers with their yeah yeah yeahs, The Beatles released "Hey Jude," a revolutionary and mature track far removed from the mop tops' early work, even if it utters the word "na" 240 times.
By 1968 the Fab Four's Edwardian suits were long gone, as was the notion that they were simply the flavor-of-the-month. The Beatles ditched live concerts to experiment in the studio, and while they didn't have a stranglehold on the Billboard charts as they did in 1964 (when at one point they had the top five hits), their music remained wildly popular.
"Hey Jude," like "She Loves You," is the story of a friend offering advice, but the world, as well as the music, had grown more complex. Paul McCartney has said he wrote it to cheer up Julian Lennon, John's five-year-old son, when Lennon was divorcing his first wife. The narrator realizes that things may not be good now, but with a little work he can find his true love "and make it better." "Hey Jude" was still on the radio rotation in July of 1969, having been the biggest selling single of 1968 and reaching out to top the list again in 1969.

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