The Beatles Song John Lennon “Always Hated” and Called “A Throwaway”

When you’re as prolific of a band as the Beatles, there will inevitably be a few songs you dislike—like the “throwaway” track from ‘Rubber Soul’ that John Lennon said he “always hated.” Ironically, Lennon was the one who wrote the song in the first place, although he would later say the tune stayed in the band’s rotation because George Harrison liked it.

Videos by American Songwriter

Paul McCartney also held the song in somewhat low regard, calling it a “macho song” in Barry Miles’ Many Years From Now. All things considered, perhaps that’s why this track found itself on the last slot of the band’s 1965 record that featured other hits like “Drive My Car” and “In My Life.”

John Lennon Always Hated This Closing Beatles Track

The 14th and final song on the Beatles’ ‘Rubber Soul’ album was an original by John Lennon: “Run for Your Life.” Lennon lifted the main gist of his song from a 1955 Elvis Presley cut called “Baby, Let’s Play House.” Presley sings in the song, Now, listen to me baby. Try to understand: I’d rather see you dead, little girl, than to be with another man.

In a 1970 Rolling Stone interview, Lennon explained that he often took musical or lyrical phrases he was particularly fond of and incorporated them into his own music. This mimicry trick was something he did with older rock n’ roll tunes from the likes of Chuck Berry and, in this song’s case, Elvis Presley. “I used to like specific lines from songs,” Lennon explained, “so I wrote it around that [Elvis line]. But I didn’t think it was that important.” Even more succinctly, Lennon said, “It was a song I just knocked off.”

Among the many Beatles songs that John Lennon disliked, there appears a common thread: if the song is about a made-up experience, there’s a good chance it wasn’t a favorite of Lennon’s. In the same Rolling Stone interview, Lennon said he preferred songs about his own life and emotions instead of a song where he was “projecting myself into a situation and writing a nice story about it. I always found that phony, but I’d find occasion to do it because I’d be so hung up, I couldn’t even think about myself.”

Some Of The Beatles Felt The Same Way About The Track

Although John Lennon previously said George Harrison liked “Run For Your Life,” not everyone else in the band felt the same way. Paul McCartney told Barry Miles in Many Years From Now that the track was just one of several examples of Lennon’s difficulty with relationships. “John was always on the run, running for his life,” McCartney mused.

“None of my songs would have ‘catch you with another man,’” he continued. “It was never a concern of mine at all because I had a girlfriend, and I would go with other girls. It was a perfectly open relationship, so I wasn’t as worried about that as John was.” McCartney described “Run For Your Life” as “a bit of a macho song.”

Even without the opinions from the band, “Run For Your Life” is a hard song to love. With an abusive, violent narrator and an ominous, life-threatening message, it certainly is one of the Beatles’ darker tunes—especially when one considers Lennon’s history of domestic violence with his first wife, Cynthia Powell. Nevertheless, ‘Rubber Soul’ boasts far more tracks than its final tune, and we’d argue the songs that came before “Run For Your Life” make up for the album’s less-than-savory ending.

Photo by Edward Wing/Daily Express/Hulton Archive/Getty Images

Leave a Reply

What are Simon & Garfunkel’s 5 Biggest Hits?

Joe Bonsall and Duane Allen of The Oak Ridge Boys are seen at The Grand Ole Opry on November 18, 2022 in Nashville, Tennessee.

The Oak Ridge Boys Share Partial Obituary, Funeral Details for the Late Joe Bonsall