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“Eleanor Rigby” by The Beatles


Eleanor Rigby is a song written by Paul McCartney and released on The Beatles 1966 album “Revolver” and as a single with “Yellow Submarine.” The song was usually performed by The Beatles band and later by McCartney with guest musicians (The Beatles 2016). The style of the song is more experimental compared to previous rock and rock-n-roll compositions of the band. This paper aims to present the song Eleanor Rigby and provide suggestions about why it makes such a strong impression on the audience.

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The song was recorded with the participation of string musical instruments – a violin, and a cello. On a video of Paul McCartney’s live performance with orchestra musicians, one can see five violinists and two cellists, as well as Paul McCartney, with a six-string acoustic guitar. Lyrics were written mainly by McCartney, with the participation of the rest of the quartet, McCartney himself describes the contribution of his comrades as 20% and his contribution as 80%.

The text of the song tells about loneliness and about older people who live lonely lives. The mood of the song is mysterious and tragic, but at the same time, cheerful and life-affirming. It is the combination of these seemingly unrelated components that makes this song one of my favorites. The syncopic rhythm creates a unique mood; the use of Dorian mode as a melodic base, the participation of stringed instruments, and a rather fast tempo do not allow listeners to become upset.


Thus, an Eleanor Rigby song by Paul McCartney and The Beatles was described, and the reasons why it has so many devoted listeners were presented. To summarize it, perhaps the fact is that the style of the song is experimental and studio-based. Besides, the participation of string instruments and deep lyrics together make a strong impression. It’s safe to say that this song has millions of fans around the world.


The Beatles. 2016. “Eleanor Rigby.” YouTube video, 2:11. 2020. Web.

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