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The Paul McCartney Beatles song that Lennon said was the best

Paul McCartney


The Paul McCartney Beatles song that Lennon said was the best

Paul McCartney and John Lennon met each other for the first time in 1957, when they were still teenagers and only 3 years later they would form The Beatles alongside George Harrison.


After performing in the bar circuit for a few years, the group finally released their debut album “Please Please Me” in 1963, showing how incredible the songwriting partnership between John and Paul was.

During the following years the group released more 12 albums and became the best-selling band of all time. They have sold an estimated amount of more than 600 million records worldwide.

Although George and Ringo also composed many famous songs from the group, most part of their discography was written mainly by Paul and John. Although the musicians wrote a lot together, by the end of the group their relationship wasn’t the best and even didn’t existed for a few years after the band broke-up.

But they had a deep respect for each other as songwriters and once Lennon told McCartney which was the song written by Paul that was his favorite one.

The Paul McCartney Beatles song that John Lennon said was the best

The Beatles came to an end in 1970, after John Lennon said that he was leaving the group and most of the band members spent years without seeing each other, especially John and Paul.

Although they were not saying many goods things about each other in interviews, and ever writing a few tracks about their fights, they were always respectful about the songwriting skills that each one of them had.

That can be seen in an interview that John Lennon gave to Hit Parader magazine in 1972, talking about many Beatles songs and even saying which one was the best written by Paul McCartney in his opinion. “(That one is written by) Paul.”

“That’s his best song. It started off as a song about my son Julian because Paul was going to see him. Then he turned it into ‘Hey Jude.’ I always thought it was about me and Yoko but he said it was about him and his,” John Lennon said.

As Lennon said, the inspiration for the song was his first son, Julian Lennon, who was visited by McCartney when Lennon was getting divorced from his first wife Cynthia. Julian was very sad to see his parents getting divorced and McCartney wrote the lyrics at first as “Hey Jules”, which was Julian’s nickname.

“Hey Jude” was first released by The Beatles as a single in 1968 and was a number one hit in several countries. It became the year’s top-selling single in the United States, United Kingdom, Australia and Canada.

John Lennon once said that Julian once wished his father was Paul

After the divorce and the beginning of his relationship with Yoko Ono, the connection between John and Julian wasn’t the same anymore. They would rarely see each other and even wouldn’t have the financial help they should from John.

In an interview with Spin Magazine back in 1975, Lennon even said that he felt like Julian wished that his father was Paul. He was asked by the interviewer how it would be for a 11-year-old kid to have Lennon as his father. The Beatle replied, saying: “It must be hell.”

He was then questioned if Julian talked with him about that. He replied, saying: “No, because he is a Beatle fan. I mean, what do you expect? So I think he likes Paul better than me … I have the funny feeling he wishes Paul was his dad. But unfortunately he got me. It must be hard to be son of anybody. He is a bright kid and he’s into music. I didn’t encourage him, but he’s already got a band in school.”

“But they sing rock’n’roll songs, ’cause their teacher is my age. So he teaches them ‘Long Tall Sally’ and a couple of Beatles numbers. He likes Barry White and he likes Gilbert O’ Sullivan. Also he likes Queen, though I haven’t heard them yet. He turns me on to music.”

Lennon continued:

“I call him and he says, ‘Have you heard Queen?’ and I say ‘No, what is it?’ I’ve heard of them. I’ve seen the guy. The one who looks like Hitler playing a piano. Sparks? I’ve seen Sparks on American TV. So I call him and say, ‘Have you seen Sparks? Hitler on the piano?’ And he says, ‘No. They are alright. But have you seen Queen?’ And I say ‘What’s Queen?’ and then he tells me. His age group is hipper to music. At 11 I was aware of music, but not too much,”John Lennon said.

Things only started to change when Julian already was a teenager and John was influenced by his girlfriend May Pang (From 1973 to 1975) to spent more time with his son.

How Julian Lennon felt about Paul McCartney writing “Hey Jude” for him

Julian Lennon and Paul McCartney always had a good relationship and continue to talk and see each other from time to time.  In an interview with the BBC Radio 4 show “Inheritance Tracks” in 2011 (Transcribed by Rock and Roll Garage), Julian talked about Hey Jude. He described how he felt about Paul writing the song inspired by him. “One day, many, many moons ago a gentleman called Paul McCartney wrote a song about me. He was just trying to console me and mom to the fact that mom and had separated.”

“The piece of music I’ve inherited is ‘Hey Jude’ by The Beatles and he wrote the song whilst on the way over to see mom. Apparently he was sitting in his car in the rain just (as) the idea of ‘Hey Jules’ came to his head. Although he felt ‘Hey Jules’ dind’t sing well enough. So he changed to ‘Hey Jude’.”

Julian continued:

“(My) relationship with dad was very few far between, really. There are fond flashes of memories. I just remember sitting on a roof with him before mom and dad separated. (We were) looking at the sun going down because we’ve made a balsa wood plane with the rubber band that you’ve wined of flick around and wind up up with your hand and flying those off the roof. It’s simple moments like that. Sadly too few.”

“It was probably only on later life when I was just entering my teens that I’d become much more aware of who I was. Also how people felt about me. I just recall one school that I went to in the north in Hoylake. On the first day in school the head teacher introduces me to whole school as John Lennon’s son. Imagine what I had to deal with that scenario. Everybody felt that I had money in the bank, that we were rich, this that and the other. That was never, ever the case, you know.”

He continued:

“I became a very fast runner, seriously. I had to run like the wind to escape many, many fights. AndI was quite a frail young lad, so it was a tough time. But it’s got better since, thank God. I probably saw (him) after he dissapred when I was five, I would say maybe a total of 10 times, I saw him before he was murdered.”

“I didn’t really know him. Of course I felt hugely upset about the fact that when Sean came along, who I love. I was probably in my early teens going to visit Sean and seeing him with all the love. All the toys he could ever want. He was getting all the attention that I felt he never paid to me. So it was tough,” Julian Lennon said.

During the same conversation, Julian said that he keeps in touch with Paul. They send each other cards for Christmas and birthdays. Back in 2022, they registred they meeting when they saw each other by accident at the airport lounge. Lennon said in his post: “It’s amazing who you run into in an airport lounge. None other than Uncle Paul… So, so lovely, and what are the chances. Thankful,” Julian Lennon said.

I'm a Brazilian journalist who always loved Classic Rock and Heavy Metal music. That passion inspired me to create Rock and Roll Garage over 6 years ago. Music has always been a part of my life, helping me through tough times and being a support to celebrate the good ones. When I became a journalist, I knew I wanted to write about my passions. After graduating in journalism from the Pontifical Catholic University of Minas Gerais, I pursued a postgraduate degree in digital communication at the same institution. The studies and experience in the field helped me improve the website and always bring the best of classic rock to the world! MTB: 0021377/MG

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