‘People started to say he WAS the Beatles’: Paul McCartney reveals frustration at John Lennon’s ‘martyr’ status after he was shot dead on street;
Sir Paul McCartney has revealed his frustration with his former bandmate John Lennon becoming a ‘martyr’ after he was shot dead on a New York street.
Speaking in a interview with Esquire Magazine, Sir Paul said Lennon’s death made him into a ‘JFK’ – something which has rankled the 73-year-old singer in the intervening years.
He explained the band had been ‘equal’ following the 1970 split, but Lennon’s death had changed all of that.
The musician was murdered by Mark Chapman in December 1980, a decade after The Beatles had broken up and they had all gone onto other projects.
‘When John got shot, aside from the pure horror of it, the lingering thing was, OK, well now John’s a martyr. A JFK,’ he said.
‘So what happened was, I started to get frustrated because people started to say, “Well, he was The Beatles.”
‘And me, George and Ringo would go: “Er, hang on, it’s only a year ago, and we were all equal-ish”.
‘And post-Beatles he did more great work, but he also did a lot of not-great work.
‘Now the fact that he’s now martyred has elevated him to a James Dean, and beyond.’
In the startlingly honest interview, Sir Paul also revealed his frustration with Yoko Ono in the months after Lennon’s death, as friends tried to reassure him people did know how much the three-times married musician had done for the band.
‘But then strange things would happen,’ he said.
‘Like Yoko would appear in the press, and I’d read it, and it said [comedy Yoko accent], “Paul did nothing! All he did was book the studio…”
‘Like, “F*** you, darling! Hang on! All I did was book the f****** studio?’
Sir Paul went on to reveal he doesn’t think any modern day band will be able to recreate the same success as The Beatles.
The 73-year-old singer claims the British rock band – made up of Paul, John, Ringo Starr and George Harrison – found worldwide fame thanks to writing their own material and their own individual skillset.
Meanwhile, the star also admitted he used to have a schoolboy crush on The Queen, by saying: ‘I like the Queen. When we grew up she was a babe.’