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It’s not a song you’ll find on many of The Beatles’ best-of compilations, but if you wade deep into the “White Album” of 1968, there at the end of side 2, you’ll find a soft, beautifully pensive acoustic number sung by John Lennon entitled “Julia.”

For my money, it’s one of the best songs Lennon ever penned: Its lyrics echo the impressionism of the better known “Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds,” describing an “oceanchild” with “seashell eyes” and “windy smile”; but where “Lucy” was all playful psychedelic wonder, “Julia” is more poignant and heartfelt, an ode to a memory, the studio frippery of producer George Martin shorn in favor of a stark voice and guitar arrangement. (In fact, it’s the only time Lennon sang and played solo on a Beatles record.)

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