Carry That Weight

Album: Abbey Road (1969)


  • Paul McCartney wrote this about his struggle to keep the Beatles together after Brian Epstein's death. Epstein was their manager and handled their business affairs, but he became overwhelmed by the success of The Beatles and died from a sleeping pill overdose in 1967. McCartney took over most of The Beatles' business affairs, and gained a greater respect for what Epstein went through.

    Along with their other turmoil at the time, McCartney told Barry Miles in an interview that the emotional weight of this song also came from too many drug issues with the group, and they were having difficulties with their new manager Allen Klein. Apple Corps (no relation to the computer company) was already in dire financial straights by the time Klein took the helm. Doubtless, there was a bit of nostalgia for the time when they were four carefree mop-tops from Liverpool who could just have fun being a band without a care in the world.

    Another cause of strife between McCartney and manager Klein was when he brought in Phil Spector to work on the Let It Be sessions. As has been noted in many places, not the least of which his murder trial, Spector tended to rub people the wrong way.
  • This was recorded as one song with "Golden Slumbers." It is part of a suite of songs at the end of Abbey Road made up of bits of unfinished songs strung together.
  • All four Beatles sang in the chorus. It's one of the few Beatles tracks where they all provide vocal harmony. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Bertrand - Paris, France
  • The orchestral backup, comprised of session musicians, includes 12 violins, four violas, four cellos, four horns, three trumpets, a double bass, a trombone, and a bass trombone.
  • "Carry That Weight" has an inserted verse of "You Never Give Me Your Money." It's Paul singing solo, but double-tracked to give it harmony. And cryptic, enigmatic lyrics that nevertheless manage to evoke sadness.

Comments: 46

  • Marcos Catao from Rio De Janeiro One of the most enchanting song of the Beatles Abbey Road final sequence encompasses all tge distractions and the single fact that they were overwhelmed by so many situations. Carry the weight is an a merger of the most beautiful unfinished songs. Play and get together turn into almost unfeasible. It was time to finish. It also shows that the Beatles was the most sucessful music phenomenon in history by far. But they were a one and not the ones. The fragile careers as individual singers and casi bands (the wings) shows how perfect they were together. But never bythemselves
  • Susan from Cleveland, OhioAt Stephanie from Rock Hill, Revolution 9 was intended to be played backwards in regards to the "Paul is dead" marketing tactic.
  • Susan from Cleveland, OhioThe Paul is dead conspiracy was a marketing tactic to boost album sales. Wouldn't it be ironic if Paul is the last Beatle to die? Love the Beatles. I was raised on them as a kid and teen. I'd come home from school and my mom would be playing an album and would quiz us. What album? What song? Which Beatle is singing and then is it off of side 1 or 2 of the album?
  • Sid from San Francisco, Ca@DNNZ They overdubbed his lyrics into the chorus according to Ian Macdonald, the famed Beatles expert.
  • Chris from Cordoba Capital, ArgentinaI always thought Ringo is the one that stands out the most in the chorus...
  • Dnnz from Aqp, Perujaja I didn't realize the same explanation is on the Her Majesty songfact check it out and yes this song is sung by all 4 members but Lennon doesn't participate in the chorus
  • Dnnz from Aqp, Perualright. First, the medley in the Abbey Road album was intended since before starting recordings for the album, althought it wasn't clear the order and number of songs to be included. Second, here is the truth about Her Majesty: It was intended to be in the medley and you can listen to a longer track in numerous bootlegs, but it didn't feel right in the mix so it was cut out. However the engineer in charge of putting everything together was told to NEVER WASTE any beatle recording so he took that well known extract of Her Majesty and put it at the end. When Paul and George review the album the liked it the way it was and kept it like that to be a surprise.
    Third, THIS IS the first hidden track ever.
  • Clubber Lange from Ocean Gate, NjSupposedly John is singing "Paaaaaaul, youre gonna carry that weight" during some of the lines...
  • Sam from Hipsville, CaLove the solo Ringo does right before the impromto jam at the end-------not a flashy drummer by any means, but his timing was always as steady as a ROCK! Ringo truly put the BEAT in the one else could have done it better.
  • Philippe from Kuala Lumpur, MalaysiaSeriously, I'm not ashame that I sometimes shed some tears when I hear this track. It has so many levels to life!
  • Rosario from Naples, FlGolden Slumbers/Carry That Weight/The End is so wonderful. I love side 2 of Abbey Road.
  • Mark from Worcester, MiMe too Mary. If my mood is right Golden Slumbers/Carry that weight/The End can bring a tear or two.
  • Mary from LondonBeautiful song, as with Golden Slumbers; I love the suite of songs at the end of Abbey Road, especially this one.
  • Ian from Lethbridge, CanadaIncredibly beautiful. Always moves me.
  • Andrew from Indianapolis, Inpart two in the best three songs in a row in rock and roll history
  • Tim from Manchester, EnglandThis was another song that became 'popular' with the "Paul Is Dead" conspiracy theorists. The obviousness of the titles is the main reason so many people thought that the Beatles were trying to substantiate the rumor that Paul had died. Fans of the conspiracy had even gone so far as to say that Paul had died in a an automobile accident and that he had been replaced by a look-alike...Google the "Paul is dead hoax' and you'll find a ton of information. It is wild and kind of creepy.
  • George from Yonkers, NyGreat symphonic rock song part of the Rock Symphony the nickname given to the Abbey Road medley.
  • Steve from Fenton, MoAccording to Geoff Emerick's book, John Lennon did not sing in the chorus of this song. He was recovering from an automobile accident he had while on holiday with Yoko. The other three Beatles sang on the chorus before John returned to the studio.
  • John from Victoria, CanadaSTE from MANCHESTER all the beatles sang on this song you can clearly hear it
  • Cameron from Bainsville, CanadaThe flowing from this song from Golden Slumbers is so cool. Even thought it's the same drum beat, it really.. I don't know how to explain it, very awesome! And I love how they go into "You never give me your money". The lyrics are great. Paul knows how to take lyrics and make them relateable to everyone. When you feel you have all this weight hanging on your shoulder, you just know you have to. Only for the best. Brilliant song.
  • Stefanie from Rock Hill, ScDo you mean "Wild Honeypie" or "honeypie?" "Wild HOneypie" is very annoying, but I think "Revolution 9" is the worst Beatles song. I will still give John Lennon credit for having the guts to record that song though. But anyway, I like this song.
  • Ste from Manchester, Englandthis is entirely paul mccartneys baby...hes the only one singing on carry that weight and there all his lyrics
  • Mary from Atlanta, GaJulian, surely you mean "Wild Honey Pie" because Honey Pie is a great song.
  • Pete from Nowra, AustraliaIn Australia Colleen Hewitt did a version of this song....sounded great
  • Steve from Fenton, MoJay from NY said it perfectly. I think McCartney possibly wrote "You Never Give Me Your Money", "Golden Slumbers", "Carry That Weight", and "The End" as a mini-collage before inserting the other songs and song fragments into the suite on side 2 of the album.
  • Julian from Anaheim, CaAre you kidding me? You have got to have a lot of nerve to call this song one of the worst Beatle songs ever. With all do respect the White Album was really cool, but a few of those songs like "Honey Pie" and "Bungalo Bill" are really bad. In my opinion this song really catapults the unique song that fallows, which is "The End"
  • Alan from Grande Prairie, Alberta, CanadaAgree with Nathan Revolution #9 worst Beatles song ever. Abbey Road best Beatles Album ever in my humble opinion.
  • Mike from Newark, NdThis , to me, was Paul's admonition to John that, if he allowed(caused?) the breakup of the band, He would "Carry that weight" a long time. I have heard this from other sources, also.
  • Joe from Vancouver, CanadaScott, the beatles never really put out a bad song in my opinion. Sure, some of them were pretty weird, but they were all WAY ahead of their time. Anyways, this definetly isn't their worst song.
  • Justin from Florence, ScDon't know if there are any anime fans here, but in the last episode of the anime Cowboy Bebop, the last scene shows, I believe, a black screen with the words "You're gonna carry that weight" in white. Being as the show is greatly inspired by many types of music(the names of episodes all have musical references) I've wondered if the quote comes from this song, but have no evidence saying such.
  • Stefanie from Rock Hill, ScIt is very possible that Paul could have been influenced by the Band.
  • Slogans7 from San Clemente, CaI don't konw why it hasn't been better documented elsewhere, but McCarthey and Harrison were both heavily influenced by the band. In the booklet that accompanied the English version of "Let It Be," I remember McCartney described the members of the the Band at great length, particularly impressed with their music - and their beards. Don't know if Paul grew his after seeing the Band, but it's quite possible. I tend to believe "Carry that Weight" was influence by "The Weight," just as the song "Let It Be" was heavily influenced by other songs by the band, including having both a piano and an organ (Billy Preston) here.
  • Nathan from Defiance, OhScott this is a great song. I think Revolution 9 is clearly the worst song Beatle song.
  • A.j. from Dover, NjThe guitar solo at the end of Carry That Weight was actually performed by all 3 guitar playing Beatles.George starts of ,then Paul does his riff,then John.If memory serves me they do this rotation twice.
  • Tuulia from Turku, FinlandActually, Her Majesty wasn't supposed to be on Abbey Road at all, although Paul had planned to place it as a part of the suite of songs, in between two songs I can't recall no matter how much I hit my head. He didn't think it was any good and thought the suite was much better without it. When playing the Abbey Road to Paul George Martin left the palyer on after "The End" and eventually "Her Majesty" popped out. It was in the very same place it is on the album and Paul and George both thought it would be brilliant just to leve it there.
  • Jay from New York, NyGolden Slumbers/Carry That Weight/The End is one of the greatest pieces of music I have ever heard. It is a fitting farewell to a great album and a great group.
  • Nessie from Sapporo, JapanI've also heard that "Her Majesty" was thrown on because side one of the LP ended with a Lennon Song. This may be just the random opinion of some music critic.
  • Kristen from Aurora, IlI love this because all of them sing it!!!!
  • Josh from Plainview, NyOh now it's not that bad, Scott, at least it reprises "You Never Give Me Your Money" which was a pretty good song. It's also part of the Abbey Road medley which is great, so it's much better than "Wild Honey Pie" which btw I don't think is that bad.
  • Scott Baldwin from Edmonton, CanadaDan, Do you mean the "I never give you my pillow" part?
  • Scott Baldwin from Edmonton, CanadaThis is one of the worst beatles songs, rubbing neck to neck with "Wild honey pie"!
  • Alan from New Baltimore, MiI love the suite from Abbey Road-probably my fave Beatles stuff and I love it all!
  • Joel from Melbourne, AustraliaThe reason that "Her Majesty" is at the very end of Abbey Road is purely because of George Martin. The song was recorded one day just to fill in time in the studio and was never supposed to be on the album. George Martin (who was producing the album) liked it and wanted to throw it in as a bit of a light hearted end to what was a very difficult and intese album to produce. This song is possibly one of the first 'hidden tracks' ever put on an album.
  • Natasha from Chico, Caum, ya, thanx 4 the details marvin, :) well, its known that paul was very controlling over the music, especially songs that he wrote, and when Her Majesty was cut from between PP and MMM, he wanted to still keep it, which explains its rather random placement that kind of gives u a surprise at the end of abbey road. But yes, the end is the perfect last song 4 the beatles to record 2gethr, tho it isn't the last song released. Oh well, at least us die-hard fans know.:)
  • Marvin from East Brady, PaAs mentioned above, there is a suite of songs that ends Abbey Road. It goes in the following order:

    "You Never Give Me Your Money," which is track nine on Abbey Road, plays first. As it fades out with the chant of "1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, all good children go to heavan" the cricket sounds of "Sun King" fade in. If I'm not mistaken, Sun King is the longest song of the suite, at over 4 minutes. There's a little bass fill and then Ring kicks off "Mean Mr. Mustard" with a 1-bar drum intro. The last strum of MMM gets cut off and suddenly Lennon is belting "Polythene Pam." PP is a short song with a funky solo at the end. Next, the band diatonically works its way into a lower key, as Lennon passes the mircrophone to Paul. Paul does his famous, "Oh, look out!!!" then starts up "She Came In Through The Bathroom Window," after which is the only actual break from music in the 8-song suite.

    After the short pause, Paul's piano on "Golden Slumbers" comes in. "Carry That Weight" is segued in by a little drum fill. During "Weight" there is a reprise of "You Never Give Me Your Money," which I always thought was put there as a reminder that there had been constant music for the last 7 tracks. Then it goes back to "Carry That Weight" which leads into "The End," the final Beatles song on the final Beatles album. Well, except for two little problems. The Next year they releases Let It Be which was meant to be thrown out. The other? Remember where Mean Mr. Mustard gets cut off? That last note fades in and then Paul sings "Her Majesty," which was originally cut from the suite. Many have said Paul wanted to get the last word, as "The End" finishes up with all four Beatles singing in harmony. Decide yourself.
  • Dan from London, Englandumm im sounds like it was recored with (you never give me you money) me out
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