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John Lennon Paul McCartney

Lennon’s assassination made him a ‘martyr’

4 Jul, 2015

showbiz-esquire-pa_3364499cIn an interview with Esquire magazine McCartney comments on how Lennon’s status changed after his murder:

The Beatles split up [in 1970] and we were sort of all equal. George did his record, John did his, I did mine, Ringo did his. It was as we were during the Beatles’ times. We were equal. When John got shot, aside from the pure horror of it, the lingering thing was, ‘OK, well, now John’s a martyr. A JFK.’ 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 we were all equal-ish.

John was the witty one, sure. John did a lot of great work. 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. So whilst I didn’t mind that – I agreed with it – I understood that now there was going to be revisionism. It was going to be: John was the one. I mean, if you just pull out all his great stuff and then stack it up against my not-so-great stuff, it’s an easy case to make.

He also discusses the order of the attribution of the Beatles songs, which was supposed to switch according to the main writer.

The original artwork had ‘Yesterday by John Lennon and Paul McCartney’ and a photo of John above it. And I went, ‘Argh, Come on, lads.’ Anyway they wouldn’t do it [change the names around]…I tell you what, if John was here he would definitely say that’s OK. Because he didn’t give a damn. It wasn’t anything that worried him. But I’ve given up on it. Suffice to say. In case it seems like I’m trying to do something to John.