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Baby, You’re a Rich Man

“Baby, You’re a Rich Man” is a song written by John Lennon and Paul McCartney, and recorded in 1967 by the Beatles. It was released on the B-side of the Beatles’ 1967 single “All You Need Is Love”.[3] New mixes of the song were made available on Magical Mystery Tour and Yellow Submarine Songtrack.

“Baby, You’re a Rich Man” was the result of combining two unfinished songs written by Lennon and McCartney, in a similar fashion to “A Day in the Life”, and “I’ve Got a Feeling”.[4][5] The verses from “One of the Beautiful People” by John Lennon were combined with Paul McCartney’s previously unaccompanied “Baby, you’re a rich man …” chorus.

That’s a combination of two separate pieces, Paul’s and mine, put together and forced into one song. One half was all mine. [Sings] ‘How does it feel to be one of the beautiful people, now that you know who you are, da da da da.’ Then Paul comes in with [sings] ‘Baby, you’re a rich man,’ which was a lick he had around.
— John Lennon, All We Are Saying, David Sheff[6]

It is thought that McCartney wrote the lyrics of his section of the song about the band’s manager, Brian Epstein.[5] Walter Everett writes that the song “asks an unnamed Brian Epstein what it’s like to be one of the ‘beautiful people.'”[7] Another angle to the song is that the “Beautiful People” verses were meant as a “tip of the hat” to Epstein for finally dropping acid. The questions John raises in the verses, such as, “How often have you been there?” and “What did you see when you were there?” are roughly equivalent to Jimi Hendrix’s “Are You Experienced?” Lennon claimed, however, that the meaning of the song was that everybody is a rich man, saying, “The point was stop moaning. You’re a rich man and we’re all rich men.”[6]

“Baby, You’re a Rich Man” was initially intended to be used in the Beatles upcoming movie, Yellow Submarine, but was rush-released as the B-side to “All You Need Is Love”.[6]

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