John Lennon’s last words to Paul McCartney reveal the enduring depth of their friendship.
The two met as kids in Liverpool, as pair of youthful dreamers with a thirst for rock ‘n’ roll. Pushing the Beatles to undreamt of heights, the banner Lennon & McCartney became a by-word for future-facing pop excellence.
Sadly, The Beatles came to an end as the 60s breathed their last, with Paul McCartney publicly stepping away from the group through a press release for his solo album, ‘McCartney’.
Law suits and public indemnity followed, with John Lennon’s ‘How Do You Sleep?’ – with George Harrison on guitar – widely viewed as a swipe at his former band mate.
Yet the two remained close, and occasionally pondered a future project together. Indeed, in John Lennon’s final interview before his murder on December 8th 1980, the songwriter joked about the duo’s “lifelong sibling rivalry” to journalist Andy Peebles.
Although their intimate conversations remained private, Paul’s wife Linda McCartney once revealed John Lennon’s last words to his former band mate. As Ultimate Classic Rock reveal, they were: “Think about me every now and then, old friend.”
Rockabilly hero Carl Perkins was moved by these words, and included the lyric in his song ‘My Old Friend’. Playing the track to Paul McCartney, it’s said that the Beatle was so overwhelmed by emotion, that when he heard the fateful line he was forced to leave the room.
Paul McCartney would later put his feelings towards John Lennon down on tape, writing the 1982 song ‘Here Today’ about his former band mate. The track dips into their Beatles legacy, an imaginary conversation with John Lennon that featured production from George Martin.
Online communities are making the music of the Beatles their own; for more on these Gen Z twitter communities, visit this deep-dive in the Clash archive.