Beatlesklassieker du jour: Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Volgens zowel John Lennon als Paul McCartney de beste song van het ‘White Album’. Who are we to disagree. John ontleende de titel aan een Amerikaans gun magazine: “George Martin [producer] showed me the cover of a magazine that said, ‘Happiness is a warm gun’. I thought it was a fantastic, insane thing to say. A warm gun means you’ve just shot something”. 

Het eerste deel van de song is samengesteld uit een aantal kreten die Lennon en zijn vriend Derek Taylor bedachten tijdens een LSD-trip. Mocht je het allemaal wat onsamenhangend vinden dan weet je nu dus de reden.

Lennon heeft altijd ontkend dat de regel ‘I need a fix, cause i’m going down’ verwijst naar het gebruik van heroïne, al bleef hij altijd nogal vaag over de vraag waar de ‘fix’ dan wél naar verwijst. Lennon is vanaf zomer ’68 tot najaar ’69 verslaafd geweest aan heroïne, wat hij weet aan de behandeling die Yoko Ono ten deel viel: “Heroin. It just was not too much fun. I never injected it or anything. We sniffed a little when we were in real pain. I mean we just couldn’t – people were giving us such a hard time. And I’ve had so much shit thrown at me and especially at Yoko. ….We took H because of what The Beatles and their pals were doing to us. And we got out of it. They didn’t set down to do it, but things came out of that period. And I don’t forget”. 

She’s not a girl who misses much
Do do do do do do, oh yeah
She’s well-acquainted with the touch of the velvet hand
Like a lizard on a window pane
The man in the crowd with the multicoloured mirrors
On his hobnail boots
Lying with his eyes while his hands are busy
Working overtime
A soap impression of his wife which he ate
And donated to the National Trust

[Verse 2: John Lennon]
I need a fix because I’m going down
Down to the bits that I left uptown
I need a fix because I’m going down

Verse 3[: John Lennon with Paul McCartney]
Mother Superior jumped the gun
Mother Superior jumped the gun
Mother Superior jumped the gun
Mother Superior jumped the gun
Mother Superior jumped the gun
Mother Superior jumped the gun

[Chorus]
Happiness is a warm gun (bang, bang, shoot, shoot)
Happiness is a warm gun, momma (bang, bang, shoot, shoot)

[Verse 4]
When I hold you in my arms (ooh, oh, yeah)
And I feel my finger on your trigger (ooh, oh, yeah)
I know nobody can do me no harm (ooh, oh, yeah)
Because

[Chorus]
(Happiness) is a warm gun momma (bang, bang, shoot, shoot)
Happiness is a warm gun, yes it is (bang, bang, shoot, shoot)
Happiness is a warm, yes it is, gun (bang, bang, shoot, shoot)
Well, don’t you know that happiness is a warm gun momma?
(Is a warm gun, yeah)

Uitgelichte afbeelding: Abbey Road Studios, waar het White Album werd opgenomen – By portum – Source, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=1227889