Paul McCartney on The Beatles: "I didn’t instigate the split"

11 October 2021, 11:41 | Updated: 11 October 2021, 11:42

The Beatles in 1969: John Lennon, George Harrison, Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr
The Beatles in 1969: John Lennon, George Harrison, Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr. Picture: Abaca Press / Alamy Stock Photo

The former Beatle has explained that he wanted the legendary group to continue into the 1970s.

Sir Paul McCartney “wanted to continue” being in The Beatles.

The musician has re-emphasised that he wasn't the one who "instigated" the iconic Liverpool group's split in 1970 and insisted it was the late John Lennon who was behind their decision to call it a day.

McCartney famously got the blame for the end of the legendary group when he announced his debut self-titled solo album in April 1970, but it was actually Lennon who told the rest of the band that he wanted to quit the previous year.

Speaking on the BBC show This Cultural Life, McCartney said: “I didn’t instigate the split. That was our Johnny.

“This was my band, this was my job, this was my life, so I wanted it to continue.”

John Lennon and Paul McCartney in July 1968
John Lennon and Paul McCartney in July 1968. Picture: Everett Collection Inc / Alamy Stock Photo

Lennon effectively called time on The Beatles in September 1969, following the release of the group's Abbey Road album - but he was persuaded to keep quiet as the group was renegotiating their contract with record label EMI.

McCartney admitted: “I had to live with that because that was what people saw. All I could do is say, ‘no’.”

"John walked into a room one day and said I am leaving the Beatles. Is that instigating the split, or not?”

Yoko Ono, John Lennon and Paul McCartney at the premiere of Yellow Submarine in July 1968
Yoko Ono, John Lennon and Paul McCartney at the premiere of Yellow Submarine in July 1968. Picture: Keystone Press / Alamy Stock Photo

McCartney has also previously denied Lennon's wife Yoko Ono caused the breakdown of The Beatles.

Many fans of the Fab Four have blamed Ono for the iconic band's split, but the bassist suggested she was only so involved because of the couple's love for each other.

He said: "Even though we thought she was intrusive because she used to sit in on the recording sessions and we'd never had anything like that.

"But looking back on it, you think, 'The guy was totally in love with her. And you've just got to respect that.' So we did. And I do."

Peter Jackson's documentary about the making of the Let It Be album titled The Beatles: Get Back will be released on Disney+ in three separate episodes on 25, 26 and 27 of November 2021.

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