Paul McCartney still ‘consults’ John Lennon when writing new songs

The Beatles
(Image credit: Bob Gomel/The LIFE Images Collection via Getty Images)

As the 40th anniversary of John Lennon’s murder nears, his former songwriting partner in The Beatles, Paul McCartney, had revealed that he still mentally consults with his old friend when piecing together new musical ideas.

“We collaborated for so long, I think, ‘OK, what would he think of this? What would he say now?’” McCartney reveals in a new interview in Uncut magazine, reported on “We’d both agree that this new song I’m talking about is going nowhere.”

“So instead of sitting around, we’d destroy it and remake it. I started that process yesterday in the studio. I took the vocal off it and decided to write a new vocal. I think it’s heading in a better direction now.”

In the same interview, McCartney reveals that thinking about Lennon is bitter-sweet for him, singling out his old friend’s birthday (October 9) as an occasion laden with “happy sad” emotions. Lennon would have been 80 this year.

“It reminds me he was murdered – but it also reminds me of the fantastic times we had,” says McCartney. “I tend to think back to early times. I remember, we tried to hitchhike to Spain once, but we only got as far as Paris. We liked it so much, we stayed there, just the two of us. We were in this little hotel in Paris; it was so cheap it had fleas. My mum was a nurse, we were very hygienic, then you end up there – bloody hell! Those things bring you together.”

John Lennon was murdered by Mark Chapman in New York on December 8, 1980.  in a somewhat macabre development, the album which Lennon signed for his killer just five hours before his death, is being put up for auction. Goldin Auctions describe  the autographed copy of Lennon’s Double Fantasy as “arguably the most important Rock N Roll relic ever for sale”, and have set $400,000 as the minimum bid for the item. 

Paul McCartney’s new solo album, McCartney  III, is set for release on December  18.

Paul Brannigan
Contributing Editor, Louder

A music writer since 1993, formerly Editor of Kerrang! and Planet Rock magazine (RIP), Paul Brannigan is a Contributing Editor to Louder. Having previously written books on Lemmy, Dave Grohl (the Sunday Times best-seller This Is A Call) and Metallica (Birth School Metallica Death, co-authored with Ian Winwood), his Eddie Van Halen biography (Eruption in the UK, Unchained in the US) emerged in 2021. He has written for Rolling Stone, Mojo and Q, hung out with Fugazi at Dischord House, flown on Ozzy Osbourne's private jet, played Angus Young's Gibson SG, and interviewed everyone from Aerosmith and Beastie Boys to Young Gods and ZZ Top. Born in the North of Ireland, Brannigan lives in North London and supports The Arsenal.