I feel like a fan as I look back on genius pal John says Paul
PAUL McCartney admits he “feels like a fan” when he looks back on his time in The Beatles with John Lennon. He tells Lennon’s son Sean in a radio documentary timed for what would have been his dad’s 80th birthday how they enjoyed learning to write songs together. Lennon was shot by Mark Chapman outside his New York apartment on December 8, 1980. John’s youngest son Sean interviews his half- brother Julian, Paul and his godfather Elton John for the two- part Radio Two documentary, John Lennon At 80. Paul, 78, said: “I look back on it now like a fan, how lucky was I to meet this strange teddy boy off the bus, who played music like I did and we get together and boy, we complemented each other”.
The pair wrote some of the most iconic music of the 20th century, but Paul admits they didn’t strike gold instantly – performing a brief acoustic version of a never- before heard track that failed to make the grade called Just Fun. He added: “There were a few songs that weren’t very good… you know, clearly young songwriters who don’t know how to do it. “Eventually, we started to write slightly better songs and then enjoyed learning together so much that it really took off.” Although the Let It Be period has been depicted as a grim time with the band fragmenting before their 1969 break- up, Paul says his recollections altered after he recently discovered footage of the recording sessions. They include a photograph taken by his late wife Linda, of him and John writing together which showed “the strength of friendship”. Paul added that John’s outward confidence and quick wit was a shield to protect him from the insecurities all performers harbour. He added: “Wait a minute, there’s this guy John Lennon who’s like a genius, clever, witty, confident – why would he have insecurities? Because we’re all fragile beings.” Lennon would have turned 80 on Friday October 9 and Sean, now 44, talks with older brother Julian, 57, about their father. Julian recalls his dad buying him a guitar when he was around 11 years old and recording an early school gig which he sent to his father on cassette.
● John Lennon At 80 will be broadcast on October 3 and 4 from 9- 10pm on Radio Two.