#76: Getting Better

We’re currently living in a world overcome by a virus that has disrupted every component of our lives, racial injustice and unrest, and the threat of a Kanye West presidency. Let’s not sugarcoat it: things are awfully bleak. Nobody really knew how to cope.

And then on July 23, Taylor Swift announced the imminent release of her new album, Folklore, and it served as a reminder that it really is getting better all the time.

That’s right, I’m using a Taylor Swift album as an excuse for being too lazy to write an entry for the last two months.


In this cheery, optimistic highlight from Sgt. Pepper, John and Paul mix clever wordplay (“It can’t get no worse”) with brutal self-reflection (Lennon’s all-too autobiographical admission of cruelty to women). But as they jointly acknowledge their unpleasant past behavior, they look ahead to a healthier, happier future.

“Getting Better” is not really the Beatles’ best performance–other than the “better, better, beeeeeeeetter” backing vocals in the chorus, these are some rare not-so-great harmonies–but it’s such a well-composed song that it hooks me from the first staccato guitar lick. The chorus is undoubtedly one of the best hooks on the Sgt. Pepper album, but there was better to come.

#76: Getting Better