Song facts: Why Don't We Do It in the Road

On October 9th 1968, on John Lennon's 28th birthday, Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr recorded a new song Why Don't We Do It in the Road, which was released on The Beatles' White Album on November 22nd, 1968.


  • Paul McCartney – vocals, thumped acoustic guitar, piano, electric guitar, bass, handclaps
  • Ringo Starr – drums, handclaps
 George Harrison and Paul McCartney working on the White Album, 1968. 

George Harrison and Paul McCartney working on the White Album, 1968. 

McCartney wrote the song while The Beatles were in India earlier that year. According to Paul he saw two monkeys copulating in the street and he was amused at the simplicity of procreation among animals, as opposed to humans. 

"A male monkey just hopped on the back of this female and gave her one, as they say in the vernacular. Within two or three seconds he hopped off again and looked around as if to say, It wasn't me; and she looked around as if there'd been some mild disturbance ... And I thought ... that's how simple the act of procreation is ... We have horrendous problems with it, and yet animals don't." - Paul McCartney  

John Lennon was unhappy Paul had recorded the song without him, although this was becoming fairly commonplace during The White Album sessions. Lennon later lamented this in a Playboy interview:

"That's Paul. He even recorded it by himself in another room. That's how it was getting in those days. We came in and he'd made the whole record. Him drumming. Him playing the piano. Him singing. But he couldn't—he couldn't—maybe he couldn't make the break from the Beatles. I don't know what it was, you know. I enjoyed the track. Still, I can't speak for George, but I was always hurt when Paul would knock something off without involving us. But that's just the way it was then." - John Lennon
"It wasn't a deliberate thing. John and George were tied up finishing something and me and Ringo were free, just hanging around, so I said to Ringo, 'Let's go and do this'...

Anyway, he did the same with Revolution 9. He went off and made that without me. No one ever says that. John is the nice guy and I'm the bastard. It gets repeated all the time." - Paul McCartney

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