John Lennon’s bitter 1971 letter to Paul McCartney up for auction

A written message from John Lennon to Paul McCartney is currently up for auction, but the contents are far from harmonious.

Lennon sent the November 1971 letter after Melody maker published an interview in which McCartney complained about ongoing negotiations to finally end The Beatles‘ business relations.

“I just want the four of us to get together somewhere and sign a piece of paper saying it’s all over and we’re going to split the money four ways,” McCartney is quoted as saying. “No one else would be there, either [wives] Linda [McCartney] or Yoko [Ono] or [controversial business manager] Allen Klein. We would just sign the paper and hand it over to the business people and let them sort it out. That’s all I want now, but John won’t do it. Everyone thinks I’m the aggressor, but I’m not. I just want out.”

Lennon’s blistering reply to his “obsessive old friend” came four days later: “Maybe there’s an answer in there somewhere … but for the millionth time in the last few years, I repeat, what about TAX?”

He goes on to address McCartney’s comments to Lennon’s Imagine album, defends his new home in New York City and accuses McCartney of, among other things, having bought shares from another record company behind his back.

Now the three-page long letter is being auctioned off Must have rock and roll and is expected to earn around $30,000. You can see the full text here.

Lennon also handwrote a few extra thoughts. One is directed at Richard Williams, then editor of Melody maker, which please publish the letter in the magazine. Lennon cheekily refers to an American “equal time” law, which requires broadcasters to treat political candidates equally in terms of air time.

A postscript at the end of the letter actually contrasts Lennon’s harsh tone and offers a kind of truce: “No hard feelings for you either. I know we basically want the same thing, and as I said on the phone and in this letter, when you want to meet, just call.”

Top 10 Double Albums

Releasing a double album in the 60s and 70s was a rite of passage. But which one was best?

Who was the fifth Beatle?

Related Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.