Ironic that Ringo Starr’s birthday falls on the same day that Rupert Murdoch decided to close down publication of the “News of the World” tabloid newspaper.

The Beatles were inveterate readers of the tabloids, especially the News of the World and others, and often gleaned inspiration from them for their songs. Tabloids have a special place in British society and their circulation have always exceeded that of the more serious, mainstream publications. They are an integral part of English society (at least among the working class).

However, the News of the World has a special place in Beatles lore because the tabloid’s name actually appears in the lyrics of one of their songs: Polythene Pam, which was on the Abbey Road album.

Written by John Lennon, the line is: “She's the kind of a girl that makes the News of the World… Yes you could say she was attractively built.

Ironically, Murdoch took control of the News of the World in 1969, just when Polythene Pam was recorded and released.

Download Polythene Pam here

Incidentally, the Beatles also immortalized another famous British tabloid, the Daily Mail. In “Paperback writer,” Paul McCartyney sang:

“His son is working for the Daily Mail It's a steady job but he wants to be a paperback writer.”

Download Paperback writer here