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The Beatles - Let it Be lyric meanings and song facts

All facts provided by Songfacts

Paul McCartney wrote this. It was inspired by his mother, Mary, who died when he was 14. Many people thought "Mother Mary" was a biblical reference when they heard it.
Since this was The Beatles last album, it made an appropriate statement about leaving problems behind and moving on in life. The album was supposed to convey an entirely different message. It was going to be called "Get Back," and they were going to record it in front of an audience on live TV, with another TV special showing them practicing the songs in the studio. It was going to be The Beatles getting back to their roots and playing unadorned live music instead of struggling in the studio like they did for The White Album. When they started putting the album together, it became clear the project wouldn't work and George Harrison left the sessions. When he returned, they abandoned the live idea and decided to use the TV footage as their last movie. While the movie was being edited, The Beatles recorded and released Abbey Road, then broke up. Eventually, Phil Spector was given the tapes and asked to produce the album, which was released months after The Beatles broke up. By then, it was clear "Let It Be" would be a better name than "Get Back."
McCartney had a dream one night when he was paranoid and anxious. He saw his mom who had been dead for ten years or so; she came to him in his time of trouble, speaking words of wisdom. This brought him much peace when he needed it. It was this sweet dream that got him to begin writing the song.
John Lennon hated this song because of it's apparent Christian overtones. He made the comment before recording it, "And now we'd like to do Hark The Angels Come." Lennon saw to it that "Maggie Mae," a song about a Liverpool prostitute, followed it on the album. (thanks, Mike - Mountlake Terrace, WA. U.S.A, for above 2)
It was John Lennon who wanted Phil Spector to produce the album. Spector worked on Lennon's "Instant Karma" and was known for his bombastic "Wall Of Sound" style. McCartney hated Spector's production, and in 2003 he pushed to have the album remixed and released without Spector's influence. The result was Let It Be... Naked, which eliminated most of Spector's work and is much closer to what The Beatles intended for the album.
George Harrison played a different guitar solo in the single and album versions.
Aretha Franklin covered this on her album This Girl's In Love With You, which was released before The Beatles version came out. She also covered The Beatles "Eleanor Rigby" on that album.
In April 1987, this was released as a charity single in aid of the The Sun newspaper's Zeebrugge ferry disaster fund. Featuring Paul McCartney, Mark Knopfler, Kate Bush, Boy George and many others, it was called "Ferry Aid" and spent 3 weeks at #1 in the UK. (thanks, Vishal - Delhi, India)
Sesame Street used this with the title changed to "Letter B." The lyrics were changed to list words that begin with B.
This was the first Beatles song released in The Soviet Union. The single made it there in 1972.
In 2001, McCartney helped organize the "Concert For New York," to benefit victims of The World Trade Center disaster. He closed the show with this, inviting the other acts and some New York cops and firefighters on stage to sing with him.
The album had the largest initial sales in US record history up to that time: 3.7 million advance orders. (thanks, bertrand - Paris, France)

All facts provided by Songfacts


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