God (2:41)

Cover of Lennon

From Lennon and 9 other releases

“God” is a song from John Lennon’s first post-Beatles solo album, John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band. The album was released on December 11, 1970 in the U.S. and the UK.

This song was very controversial upon its release, dealing with religious themes.

Meaning

The first movement of the song discusses Lennon’s disdain for popular religious belief. He believed that God was something different to everyone, and that most people did not focus enough on the moral lessons of religion. He describes God as “a concept by which we measure our pain”.

In the second section of the song, Lennon lists many idols that he does not believe in (including The Beatles), ending by stating that he just believes in himself and Yoko. The idols he lists are: magic, I Ching, the Bible, tarot, Hitler, Jesus, Kennedy, Buddha, mantra, Gita, yoga, kings, Elvis, Zimmerman (Bob Dylan) and The Beatles.

The final section of the song describes Lennon’s change since the breakup of The Beatles. He states that he is no longer the “Dreamweaver” or “The Walrus,” but just “John.” The final line of the song, “The dream is over,” represents Lennon’s stance that the myth “the Beatles were God” had come to an end. “If there is a God,” Lennon explained, “we’re all it.”[1]

Personnel

The musicians who performed on the original recording were as follows:[2]

* John Lennon - vocals
* Billy Preston - piano
* Ringo Starr - drums
* Klaus Voormann - bass

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Albums featuring this track (10)

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