Trippy tunes the Beatles made during their India travels

beatles-maharishi-gross-2.jpg image from veda

“Within You Without You” was written on a harmonium at the house of long-time Beatles friend, Klaus Voormann, while “there were lots of joints being smoked”. It was written by George Harrison and recorded with a group of Indian musicians, without any input from his fellow Beatles. It was the second of Harrison’s songs to be explicitly influenced by Indian classical music, after “Love You To”. It was released in 1967 on Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, the last song to be completed for the album.Harrison wrote this as a 30-minute piece. He trimmed it down into a mini-version for the album. The laughter at the end was Harrison’s idea to lighten the mood and follow the theme of the album. Sped up to C#, an instrumental version at the original speed and key appears on the Anthology 2 album.

info from wiki

Harrison took his Hindu teachings most seriously, of all the Beatles. On the evening of 30 December 1999, Michael Abram broke into the Harrisons’ Friar Park home in Henley-on-Thames and stabbed George multiple times, ultimately puncturing his lung. Harrison and his wife, Olivia, fought the intruder and detained him for the police. Severely injured, it is said that George went out into his back garden and chanted “Hari Krishna.” till he received medical assistance.

chant-and-be-happy.jpg image from vedicbooks

The song is basically about the Hindu and Buddhist idea of maya, the illusions which can prevent us from self actualizing, and of course the idea of love as an emotion to be cultivated and practiced as a spiritual path.

Within you Without you lyrics:

“We were talking – about the space between us all
And the people – who hide themselves behind a wall of illusion
Never glimpse the truth – then it’s far too late – when they pass away.”

“We were talking – about the love we all could share – when we find it
To try our best to hold it there – with our love.
With our love – We could save the world – if they only knew…
Try to realise it’s all within yourself, no one else can make you change.”

“And to see you’re really only very small
and life flows on within you and without you.”

“We were talking – about the love that’s gone so cold and the people,
Who gain the world and lose their soul.
They don’t know. They can’t see. Are you one of them?
When you see beyond yourself then you may find,
peace of mind, is waiting there.”

“And the time will come when you see we’re all one,
and life flows on within you and without you.”

And this is a pretty trippy video to go along with the psychedelic rock

Across the Universe:

One night in 1967, the phrase “words are flowing out like endless rain into a paper cup” came to Lennon, after hearing his then-wife Cynthia talking. Intrigued, he rushed to grab a paper and pencil. He began to write the rest of the lyrics, and when he was done, he went to bed and forgot about them.

In the morning, Lennon found the paper on which he had written the lyrics and brought them down to his piano, where he began to play chords, and find pitches to match the words. The flavor of the song was heavily influenced by Lennon’s and The Beatles’ short-lived interest in Transcendental Meditation in late 1967โ€“early 1968, when the song was composed. Based on this he added the mantra (Jai Guru Deva Om) to the piece, which served as a link between the bridge and verse.

The structure of the lyrics is straightforward: three repetitions of a unit consisting of a verse, the line “Jai Guru Deva Om”, and the line “Nothing’s gonna change my world” repeated four times. The lyrics are highly image-based, with abstract concepts reified with phrases like thoughts “meandering”, words “slithering”, and undying love “shining”. The title phrase “across the universe” appears at intervals to finish lines.In his 1970 interview with Rolling Stone Magazine, Lennon referred to the song as perhaps the best, most poetic lyrics he ever wrote.

info from wiki

John and Cynthia:
john-and-cynthia.jpg image from bbc

Across the Universe lyrics:

Words are flying out like endless rain into a paper cup
They slither while they pass They slip away across the universe
Pools of sorrow waves of joy are drifting thorough my open mind
Possessing and caressing me

Jai guru deva om
Nothing’s gonna change my world

Images of broken light which dance before me like a million eyes
That call me on and on across the universe
Thoughts meander like a restless wind inside a letter box
they tumble blindly as they make their way across the universe

Jai guru deva om
Nothing’s gonna change my world

Sounds of laughter shades of life are ringing through my open ears
exciting and inviting me Limitless undying love which
shines around me like a million suns
It calls me on and on across the universe

Jai guru deva om
Nothing’s gonna change my world

Here’s the song with footage of the Beatles at the Rishikesh Ashram:

“Sexy Sadie” is a song about the Beatles getting disillusioned by the Maharishi who had been their guru at the ashram. “Sadie” is really “sadhu”…..and so it goes “sexy sadhu….what have you done?” It was written by written by John Lennon (and Paul McCartney) in India.Originally titled “Maharishi”, the Beatles changed the title to “Sexy Sadie” to avoid the potential for litigation as the song’s lyrics portray the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi in a less than favorable light. Lennon became discouraged after the Maharishi had allegedly made a pass at one of the female members of their entourage. Lennon once said of the song: “That was inspired by Maharishi. I wrote it when we had our bags packed and were leaving. It was the last piece I wrote before I left India. I just called him, ‘Sexy Sadie,’ instead of (sings) ‘Maharishi what have you done, you made a fool…’ I was just using the situation to write a song, rather calculatingly but also to express what I felt. I was leaving the Maharishi with a bad taste. You know, it seems that my partings are always not as nice as I’d like them to be.”

info from wiki

The maharishi:

Sexy Sadie lyrics:

Sexy Sadie what have you done?
You made a fool of everyone
You made a fool of everyone.
Sexy Sadie ooh what have you done?

Sexy Sadie you broke the rules
You layed it down for all to see
You layed it down for all to see
Sexy Sadie oooh you broke the rules.

One sunny day the world was waiting for a lover
She came along to turn on everyone
Sexy Sadie the greatest of them all.

Sexy Sadie how did you know
The world was waiting just for you
The world was waiting just for you
Sexy Sadie oooh how did you know.

Sexy Sadie you’ll get yours yet
However big you think you are
However big you think you are
Sexy Sadie oooh you’ll get yours yet.

We gave her everything we owned just to sit at her table
Just a smile would lighten everything
Sexy Sadie she’s the latest and the greatest of them all.

She made a fool of everyone
Sexy Sadie.

However big you think you are
Sexy Sadie.

Here’s the songs with a slideshow of the Beatles at the ashram with the Sexy Sadhu:


1 Comment

  1. you can’t forget about “Tomorrow Never Knows” i call that a pretty trippy song ๐Ÿ˜› ๐Ÿ™‚

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