when John Lennon He was murdered in December 1980, and tributes poured in from all over the world in memory of the beloved Beatle. “It was hard for everyone in the world because he was such a likable character and such a crazy guy, you know, that it was so special,” he said. Paul McCartney He was called out during a recent interview with SiriusXM the Beatles channel. “And so it hit me so much that I couldn’t really talk about it.”
More than four decades later, he recalls feeling as if he couldn’t share in the kind of grief other people experience because it simply didn’t feel right for him.
“I remember coming home from the studio the day we heard the news of his death and turning on the TV and seeing people saying, ‘Well, John Lennon was this,’ and ‘What was it, that was,’” the musician said. “I remember meeting him.” Like, I don’t know, I can’t be one of those people. I can’t go on TV and say what John meant to me. It was very deep. It’s just a lot. I couldn’t put it into words.”
Instead, McCartney let his emotions settle before sitting down to address Lennon’s death through songwriting. “I was in a building that was going to be my recording studio, and there were only two small empty rooms upstairs,” he explained. “So I found a room and I just sat on the hardwood floor in the corner with my guitar and I just started strumming the opening chords on ‘Here Today.'”
The song, which appeared on his third solo album, tug of warIn 1982, he found McCartney asking questions of Lennon and imagining what his response would be. “And if I said I know you really well / What would your answer be / If you were here today?” He asks in the opening verse, continuing: “Well, knowing you / You’d probably laugh and say we were worlds apart.”
Later in the song, he asks about the time he and Lennon met and again they cry together. “The night we cried, it was because of the time we were in Key West down in Florida,” McCartney explained. “And for some reason, I think it was like a hurricane, something got delayed, and we couldn’t play for a few days. So we held out in a motel. So what are we going to do? Well, we’re going to drink, and we’ve been getting drunk. We didn’t have to play. So we did that night.”
He continued, “We got drunk and started getting emotional, you know, ‘Oh, you were cool when you were, I love that. ‘” You know, we hit it off, it all came out, you know, but on the way to that, there was a lot of soul-searching. You know, we said some truths to each other, you know, “Well, I love you. I love you man. I love that you said that. I love you. And we opened up. So, that was kind of special to me. I think that was really one of the only times it ever happened.”
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