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The Beatles Hey Jude album cover
4.27 | 38 ratings | 3 reviews | 58% 5 stars

Essential: a masterpiece of
rock music

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Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, released in 1968

Songs / Tracks Listing

1.Hey Jude( 7.11)
2. Revolution (3:24)

Total Time 10.35

Line-up / Musicians

- John Lennon / guitar, vocals
- George Harrison / guitar, vocals
- Paul McCartney / bass, vocals
- Ringo Starr / drums, vocals

Releases information

Label Apple
Catalogue No. R 5722
Matrix Numbers 7XCE 21185-1 (Hey Jude)
7XCE 21186-1 (Revolution)
Release Date 30th August 1968
U.K. Chart Detail :
Entry Date : 4th September 1968
Highest Position : 1 ... for 2 weeks from 11th September
Weeks in Chart : 16 Weeks

Thanks to mogorva for the addition
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THE BEATLES Hey Jude ratings distribution

(38 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of rock music(58%)
Excellent addition to any rock music collection(24%)
Good, but non-essential (13%)
Collectors/fans only (5%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

THE BEATLES Hey Jude reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Matthew T
5 stars August 1968 and the world said wow what a tune. Running at over 7 minutes, composed by Paul McCartney. The flip was the same standard believe it or not and that was Revolution which was composed by John Lennon. Both of these songs were done while The White album was recorded and not included but only released as a single.

Revolution was the 2nd version and by far the best and yet it was John who objected to having it speed up. The rest of the band thought Revolution 1 was too slow. The guitar distortion used must be the one of the greatest moments in rock as any fan knows. Nicky Hopkins played electric piano as well.

The song Hey Jude would have to be the pinnacle of songwriting for any song writer and will always be considered one of the greatest songs composed. Twenty five takes all up but most were demos. Also how do you fit 7 minutes plus on to a single without losing volume and quality with the compression of the grooves. Well they did keep the volume and quality but the limitations were used on the coda( Na na na) and the single has a slow decline in volume or fadeout.

Number one everywhere with figures of over 50 weeks in the charts in some countries but it was 31 in the UK and 33 in the US .Sold many a million copies and for good reason. One other note the single is noted as being issued on Apple but here in Australia it is was originally released on Parlophone and the label was not changed to Apple after the first print was sold out.

Rock and Roll History

Review by patrickq
4 stars The a-side, written and sung by Paul McCartney, is among the three or four most recognizable songs the Beatles ever recorded. The b-side, written and sung by John Lennon, was less of a hit, but represents a key moment in the group's transformation from a tight band of four entertainers to a loose confederation of individual rock superstars.

"Hey Jude"

McCartney's 'Hey Jude' can be viewed as a reflection, and a major upgrade, of Lennon's 'All You Need is Love.' The narrow debt should be acknowledged, most notably the omniscient commentator reciting global truths about love, the accessible-yet-complex composition, and the sing-along chorus fade. And it seems fair to say that McCartney's songwriting in general owes much to Lennon. But by the summer of 1968, the pupil was surpassing the teacher on a regular basis. I could excuse Lennon for being chagrined at McCartney having a massive hit with this polished, commercialized, boy-meets-girl twist on Lennon's work, especially since his own 'Revolution,' which he felt was equal to 'Hey Jude,' was relegated to the flip side. Nonetheless, Lennon praised the song for the rest of his life.

The differences between 'Hey Jude' and 'All You Need is Love' are as important as the similarities. The message of the former is more focused (i.e., directed at just one person throughout), the vocal melody more sophisticated and more classical, the delivery more plaintive. With these qualities, the hopefulness of 'Hey Jude' rings truer than that of 'All You Need is Love,' whose semantic wordplay (e.g., 'nothing you can sing that can't be sung'), insistence that 'it's easy,' and jokey (though amusing) coda present a confusing message.


Of course, it can be argued that Lennon intended to confuse the listener, the metanarrative being that 'All You Need is Love' is actually a satire of flower-power oversimplification. While that's not borne out, as far as I know, in Lennon's subsequent statements, we know that Lennon was capable of embodying skepticism in his music, with 'Revolution' being a case in point. Composed by Lennon about a year after 'All You Need is Love,' 'Revolution' must've struck some listeners as a bit of a reversal of position. 'All You Need is Love' was written and performed expressly for a television program promoting world peace, and the song is accordingly inclusive and straightforward. The listener is led gradually into the song, on which the group is accompanied by a small orchestra. It's a gentle tune we can all sing along to.

Conversely 'Revolution' opens with a burst of maximally distorted electric guitar and a scream, and the first verse begins almost immediately. And even if its counterculture-questioning lyrics were perfectly transparent, the message of 'Revolution' appears to be at odds with the Beatles' public stances. Famously, though, Lennon's lyric isn't transparent, especially when delivered with a sneer. For example, I always took lines like 'if you go carrying pictures of Chairman Mao / you ain't gonna make it with anyone anyhow' as sarcasm spoken in a voice in opposition to the speaker of lines like 'but when you talk about destruction / don't you know that you can count me out?' And the refrain, 'you know, it's gonna be alright,' doesn't clear anything up. How is it going to be alright? But lyrically, 'Revolution' isn't as confusing or inconsistent as it is ambiguous and thorny- - which is a good thing.

The song itself is catchy, accessible, and appropriately rough, and it would be a gem in the discography of nearly any other musical act; as a Beatles song, it's appropriately placed as a b-side.


In the U.S., 'Hey Jude'/'Revolution' was a certifiable smash and the Beatles' biggest hit, the a-side spending nine weeks at #1 on the Billboard Hot 100, and the b-side hitting #12 on that same chart. The single was certified quadruple-platinum in 1999. It was also a chart-topper in the UK and at least sixteen other countries. And in Australia, Canada, the UK, and the US, it was the #1 song of the year. Massive hits aren't always massively successful works of art, but in this case the commercial attainments were well deserved, especially in the case of 'Hey Jude.'

I'm reluctant to assign more than three stars to a single when, for example, both sides are available on a retrospective compilation (like 1967-1970 or Past Masters, vol. 2). But given the quality of the songs and the fact that 'Hey Jude'/'Revolution' was a non-album single, this one's an exception.

Latest members reviews

3 stars I'll be perfectly honest. If you hate Hey Jude, you probably hate music. If the Beatles ever managed to produce an entire album as excellent as this truly exquisite single, I just might buy all the hype. The actual track itself is inescapably catchy. I would consider it to be the gold standard f ... (read more)

Report this review (#410419) | Posted by R-A-N-M-A | Wednesday, March 2, 2011 | Review Permanlink

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