Lovely Rita is a song by The Beatles performed on the album Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band , written and sung by Paul McCartney (writing credits: Lennon/McCartney ). It is about a female traffic warden and the narrator's affection for her.
The term, "meter-maid", is American slang for a female traffic warden, who are now officially known by the less gender-specific parking attendant, and was largely unknown in the UK prior to the song's release. The song plays an important role in the Paul is Dead theory that occurred during The Beatles fame, as the song figures in the hoax because McCartney was distracted by Rita while driving, and led to the car crash that ended his life. In truth, the song emanates from when McCartney was issued with a parking ticket outside Abbey Road Studios , by a female traffic warden named Meta Davis. Instead of becoming angry, he accepted it with good grace and expressed his feelings (sarcastically) in song. When asked why he had called her "Rita", McCartney replied: "Well, she looked like a Rita to me".
- Paul McCartney - Lead Vocals, Bass Guitar (Rickenbacker 4001S), Piano (Hamburg Steinway Baby Grand), Comb and toilet paper kazoo
- John Lennon - Rhythm Guitar (Gibson J-160E), Backing Vocals, Comb and toilet paper kazoo, Vocal Percussion
- George Harrison - Rhythm Guitar (Gibson J-160E), Backing Vocals, Comb and toilet paper kazoo
- Ringo Starr - Drums, Comb and toilet paper kazoo
- George Martin - Piano (Hamburg Steinway Baby Grand)
- Shawn Phillips - Backing Vocals
You can hear John Lennon making strange noises after several lines.