Politics and Psilocybin Mushrooms: The Story Behind The Beatles' "Come Together"

Tuesday, March 26, 2024

The first, whispered “Shoot me,” followed by Paul McCartney’s iconic bass line, makes the Beatles’ 1969 hit “Come Together” undeniably recognizable within seconds. However, the song’s compositional origin is as cloudy as its lyrics, which Lennon once described as “gobbledygook.”

“Come Together” is the opening track off ‘Abbey Road,’ setting the signature tone for the Beatles’ eleventh and highly acclaimed album. But before it served as the ‘Abbey Road’ opener, a much different version of the track was used for a political campaign.
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The origins of “Come Together” stretch back to psychedelic advocate and 1970 gubernatorial hopeful Timothy Leary. The Harvard University psychologist spent the early 1960s testing and promoting the beneficial qualities of marijuana, LSD, and psilocybin mushrooms. At a time when recreational drugs like marijuana were largely vilified, Leary gained a reputation in some circles as a dangerous criminal. In others, he was a revolutionary.

Source: Melanie Davis/


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