"You Can't Do That" as written by John Lennon and Paul Mccartney....
I got something to say that might cause you pain,
If I catch you talking to that boy again,
I'm gonna let you down,
And leave you flat,
Because I told you before, oh,
You can't do that

Well, it's the second time, I've caught you talking to him,
Do I have to tell you one more time, I think it's a sin,
I think I'll let you down,
Let you down and leave you flat,
Gonna let you down and leave you flat,
Because I've told you before, oh,
You can't do that

Everybody's green,
'Cause I'm the one, who won your love,
But if they'd seen,
You're talking that way they'd laugh in my face

So please listen to me, if you wanna stay mine,
I can't help my feelings, I'll go out of my mind
I'm gonna let you down, let you down
And leave you flat,
Gonna let you down and leave you flat,
Because I've told you before, oh, you can't do that
You can't do that. You can't do that
You can't do that. You can't do that
You can't do that

Everybody's green,
'Cause I'm the one who won your love,
But if they'd seen,
You're talking that way they'd laugh in my face

So please listen to me, if you wanna stay mine,
I can't help my feelings, I'll go out of my mind
I'm gonna let you down, let you down
And leave you flat,
Gonna let you down and leave you flat,
Because I've told you before, oh,
You can't do that


Lyrics submitted by Ice

"You Can't Do That" as written by Paul Mccartney John Lennon

Lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC

Lyrics powered by LyricFind

You Can't Do That song meanings
Add your thoughts

8 Comments

sort form View by:
  • +3
    General CommentWow, John Lennon had some jealously issues...this, Run For Your Life, I'm sure I can come up with a few more examples...
    new_york_eyes27on September 16, 2009   Link
  • +2
    General CommentHa, I love this song. He's basically saying that he's the boss in the relationship and the girl better straighten up or he will leave her.
    josh87on March 13, 2005   Link
  • +1
    General CommentNice theory, 2world, but I don't think Lennon had too much interest in religion at that stage in his life. This song is probably nothing more than a mysogonistic Lennon tune fuelled by his border-line maniacal jealousy. This song shows the "tough" side of Lennon to counter his softer side on songs like "If I Fell" and "Tell me Why"
    born to runon January 17, 2006   Link
  • +1
    General Comment2world your theory is so weird man...Its a kick-ass song by Lennon...lyrics are pretty simple its just the music which is killing..one the few songs which my poor friends who dont understand the concept of beatles can listen to...lennon yells and leads follows nothing like it...
    vishal_wallon January 18, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentOkay I heard that this was Lennon having a conversation with God. So many people think that Lennon and the Beatles were pretty much the 60's "saviors" and that they were blessed with this responsinility to help out America and attempt at instilling love and peace which ultimately saves us you know? A lot of people thought and still do think of their music to be almost "divine,"
    So let's just say Lennon *was* God's chosen one...Lennon was saying, "I'm gonna let you down and leave you flat" and then he talks about himself in third person Lennon says, "Well, it’s the second time, I’ve caught you talking to him,
    Do I have to tell you one more time, I think it’s a sin,"
    'I think I'll let you down' he says...

    "Ev’rybody’s green,
    ‘Cause I’m the one, who won your love,
    But if it’s seen,
    You’re talking that way
    They’d laugh in my face.
    So please listen to me, if you wanna stay mine,
    I can’t help my feelings, I’ll go out of my mind,"
    See with following this whole idea, this part is saying to God, "I won your love and people are jealous about it. I mean if they heard what kind of ideas you wanted me to communicate for you, they'd laugh at me." Then he says, "Please listen to me if you want to stay mine"
    which means he's laying it down and kind of venting to this higher power he is communicating for.

    Okay so this was done in the very beginning of the Beatles' musical career so this idea makes sense with the timing. And then at the very end of their career, their last performance on a roof top singing, "Don't Let Me Down" it's kind of like the Bealtes saying, "We gave you all this music and tried to instill some peace. We have taught you. Our job is over. It's up to all of you now. 'DOn't Let me Down'" It's kind of a word from God as well, don't you think? Continuing with that whole savior idea of course...
    2worldon January 02, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Commentthanks guys :) yeah, I still really love this song. I've heard about his jealousy, yes. And I very much agree with vishal wall about his yells and leads. Powerful stuff.
    2worldon March 10, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI can relate to his jealousy, but I don't really like this side of John Lennon. But, you know, he got better. :P
    missworld77on April 29, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentWhen listening to pop music with a story like this, I often imagine what the other person's response would be. In this case it had to be something like this:

    "You pompous ass, don't flatter yourself. Here's a clue -- you say 'I told you before' -- and how's that working out for ya? You say 'everybody's green' with envy that you scored such a hottie. So how long do you think I'll be crying on my own? How 'flat' do you think you're really going to leave me? As if.

    'Wanna stay mine'? Didn't know I ever was your property.

    'I'm gonna let you down' -- Oh yeah? Know what, I'll save you the trouble. I'm gonna DTMFA as Dan Savage likes to say... Buh-bye."

    Forgive the anachronisms, like John's girlfriend in the 60s quoting Dan Savage, but the song is "timeless", right? Twaddle and tripe can be timeless too.

    That said, the song IS impossibly catchy, a well-crafted pop song from one of the top geniuses of the genre.
    bulgieon September 09, 2013   Link

Add your thoughts

Log in now to tell us what you think this song means.

Don’t have an account? Create an account with SongMeanings to post comments, submit lyrics, and more. It’s super easy, we promise!

Back to top
explain