“Back in the U.S.S.R.” – The Beatles (1968)

1960s: Days of Rage


“‘Back in the U.S.S.R.’ is a song by the English rock band the Beatles and the first track of the 1968 double album The Beatles (also known as the ‘White Album’). Written by Paul McCartney and credited to the Lennon–McCartney partnership, the song is a parody of Chuck Berry‘s ‘Back in the U.S.A.‘ and the Beach Boys‘ ‘California Girls‘. The lyrics subvert Berry’s patriotic sentiments about the United States, as the narrator expresses relief upon returning home to the Soviet Union, formally the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR). The Beatles recorded ‘Back in the U.S.S.R.’ as a three-piece after Ringo Starr temporarily left the group, in protest at McCartney’s criticism of his drumming and the tensions that typified the sessions for the White Album. Instead, the other Beatles created a composite drum track from numerous takes. McCartney’s singing was based on

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