Puneet Varma (Editor)

Gimme Some Truth

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Genre  Blues rock, hard rock
Label  Apple
Length  3:18
Writer(s)  John Lennon
Released  9 September 1971 (US) 8 October 1971 (UK)
Recorded  June–July 1971 Ascot Sound Studios, Surrey

"Gimme Some Truth" − or "Give Me Some Truth", as the title originally appeared on record sleeves − is a protest song written and performed by John Lennon. It was first released on his 1971 album Imagine. "Gimme Some Truth" contains various political references emerging from the time it was written, during the latter years of the Vietnam War.

Contents

Origins

Work on the song began as early as January 1969 during The Beatles' Get Back sessions, which would eventually evolve into Let It Be. Bootleg recordings of the group performing songs that would eventually go onto the members' solo recordings feature a few performances of "Gimme Some Truth".

Lyrics

The song expresses Lennon's frustration with deceptive politicians ("short-haired yellow-bellied sons of Tricky Dicky"), with hypocrisy, and with chauvinism ("tight-lipped condescending mommy's little chauvinists"). The song encapsulates some widely held feelings of the time, when many people were participating in protest rallies against their governments.

"Gimme Some Truth" uses a reference to the nursery rhyme "Old Mother Hubbard" (about a woman going to get her dog a bone, only to discover that her cupboard is empty) as verb. The song's mention of "soft-soap" employs that slang verb in its classic sense − i.e., insincere flattery that attempts to convince someone to do or to think something, as in the case of politicians who use specious or beguiling rhetoric to quell public unrest or to propagandise unfairly.

Personnel

  • John Lennon – vocals, electric guitar
  • George Harrison – electric guitar, slide guitar
  • Nicky Hopkins – piano
  • Rod Linton – acoustic guitar
  • Andy Davis – acoustic guitar
  • Klaus Voormann – bass
  • Alan White – drums
  • Cover versions and performances by other artists

  • Billy Idol's band Generation X recorded it as B-side to "King Rocker" in 1978. It appeared on the USA release of their eponymous first album and also appears as a bonus track on the remastered version of 1979's Valley of the Dolls
  • The Wonder Stuff included "Gimme Some Truth" on the expanded version of the 1989 album Hup.
  • Sam Phillips recorded a version for her 1994 album Martinis & Bikinis.
  • Ash released it as a B-side to "Angel Interceptor" in 1995.
  • Travis's version is a B-side to "More Than Us", released in 1998, and also appears on the various artists compilation "Causes 1" released in 2011.
  • Pearl Jam has covered this song live on numerous occasions.
  • On the 2007 compilation album Instant Karma: The Amnesty International Campaign to Save Darfur, The Wallflowers' frontman Jakob Dylan (son of Bob Dylan) covers the song and Dhani Harrison (son of George Harrison) reprises his father's role as lead guitarist. Mexican group Jaguares made another cover version for the same album.
  • Primal Scream recorded this song as a B-side to their "Country Girl" single in 2006.
  • Matthew Sweet and Susanna Hoffs released a version on their 2009 collaboration Under the Covers, Vol. 2.
  • Lydia Canaan internet released a cover of the song as a single in 2014.
  • Drive By Truckers covered this song live at the 40 Watt club in Athens Georgia on 2/16/2017 and 2/18/2017.
  • Other works named after the song

  • A 2000 direct-to-video documentary film showing the recording sessions and evolution of Imagine took its title, Gimme Some Truth: The Making of John Lennon's Imagine Album, from this song.
  • Jon Wiener took the title of this song for his 1999 book, Gimme Some Truth: The John Lennon FBI Files, about Nixon's attempt to deport Lennon in 1972.
  • References

    Gimme Some Truth Wikipedia


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