Paul McCartney on rivalry with Beatles star as he questions ‘what would John Lennon say?’

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Sir Paul McCartney, 78, was a part of the prominent British rock band The Beatles alongside John Lennon, George Harrison and Ringo Starr. The legendary musician admitted that there was an element of competition between him and John when it came to writing songs, and even now he questions what the late singer would’ve thought.

Paul’s admission comes after John was celebrated last week following what would have been his 80th birthday.

The Yesterday hitmaker sat down in an emotional two-part interview with his late bandmate’s son Sean Lennon, as he reflected on the pair’s relationship in a BBC Radio 2 and BBC sounds broadcast John Lennon at 80 which aired last weekend.

He recalled that the pals would often write music “separately” before he addressed the group’s break-up.

Paul explained: “The interesting thing is that, ever since The Beatles broke up and we didn’t write together or even record together, I think each one of us referenced the others.

“When we’re writing stuff, I often do it, you know.”

The crooner revealed that after the band went their separate ways he would often quiz himself.

“I’m writing something and I go, ‘Oh, god, this is bl***y awful,'” Paul commented.

“And I think what would John say? And you go, ‘Yeah, you’re right. It’s bl***y awful. You’ve got to change it.’”

He continued: “And so I’ll change it, and I know from reports that he did similar things to that.

“If I’d have a record out, he’d go, ‘Bl***y hell… got to go in the studio. Got to try and do better than Paul.’”

As members of The Beatles, they rose to insane heights as performers, only to continue their legacy as solo acts when the group parted ways.

The band’s popular song Yesterday was written by Paul during the pair’s song-writing partnership.


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John and Paul wrote some of the most iconic songs the band recorded but following their split, tensions rose between the pair.

However, the latter explained that they both influenced each other with their music.

“You know, the reason we originally wrote separately was because we were living separately,” Paul commented.

“In the early days, we’d been on tour all the time so we were kind of living together.”

He continued: “Once the touring is off, and we might have one tour a year or something, there would be plenty of time to be at home. And so you’d pick up a guitar or something.

“And let’s say I wrote Yesterday or something like that, John would write Strawberry Fields.

“So you were writing separately, then you’d bring it together for the record, but you would then get some collaboration to finish up the song and to bring it into the studio, and then you collaborate in the studio.”

Despite the tension between John and Paul, the pair eventually patched things up before the singer’s death.

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