Paul and John were once renowned for their songwriting abilities as a duo, but they famously fell out over artistic differences when the band was at the height of fame. As John is the band member who did eventually trigger the Beatles’ official split, many fans believe his decision was down to the influence of his wife Yoko. John went on to produce his single, ‘Imagine’ with Yoko’s input, which he later claimed had “more intelligent interest” than any work he had produced with the Beatles, sparking yet more rivalry between them.
Paul and John then went on to fight for several years after its disbandment.
Yet, despite popular belief, Paul did not hold it against Yoko. During an interview with the Rolling Stone magazine in 2016, Paul revealed how he once had a “big awakening” over his relationship with her.
He said: “My big awakening was, if John loves this woman, that’s gotta be right. I realised any resistance was something I had to overcome.
“It was a little hard at first. Gradually, we did. Now it’s like we’re mates. I like Yoko.”
He then laughed: “She’s so Yoko.”
He even contributed to the quote on the cover of the couple’s 1968 ‘Two Virgins’ album, writing, “when two great saints meet, it is humbling experience”, despite the antagonism between them at the time.
When asked how he would “characterise” his relationship with Yoko in 2016, years after John’s tragic death, he was very positive.
Paul said: “It’s really good, actually. We were kind of threatened. She was sitting on the amps while we were recording. Most bands couldn’t handle that. We handled it, but not amazingly well, because we were so tight.
“We weren’t sexist, but girls didn’t come to the studio – they tended to leave us to it.
“When John got with Yoko, she wasn’t in the control room or to the side. It was in the middle of the four of us.”
During the band’s film ‘Let It Be’, Yoko’s closeness to John has been pointed out by many commentators. John even gave an interview later saying she expected to perform with the band but was met with hostility by the other members.
However, John and Paul did reconcile before his tragic death in 1980.
Speaking to the Rolling Stone, Paul said: “He hugged me. It was great, because we didn’t normally do that.
“John said: “’It’s good to touch.’ I always remembered that – it’s good to touch.’”
The former Beatle mentioned how it now had to be a “unanimous” decision in order for an old Beatles song to be re-released – and that means including Ringo Starr, John’s widow Yoko and George Harrison’s widow Olivia Harrison.
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He said: “That’s the secret of the Beatles – can’t do three to one. During the breakup was when it got served up.
“We did three against one. But now it has to be unanimous. The two girls are Beatles.”
However, Paul’s relationship with Yoko still seems to change year on year.
He gave a shocking interview with Esquire only the year before in July 2015 where he branded John a “martyr” and claimed “revisionism” after his death meant fans now saw just him as “the Beatles”.
He also added: “Yoko would appear in the press and I’d read it and it said [comedy Yoko accent], ‘Paul did nothing! All he did was book the studio…’”
While re-telling the story, Paul was clearly still outraged: “F*** you darling! Hang on! All I did was book the f****** studio?”
It will be 39 years since John’s tragic assassination this Sunday.
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