John Lennon and Paul McCartney met 60 years ago today; here are 5 of their best songs | music | Hindustan Times
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John Lennon and Paul McCartney met 60 years ago today; here are 5 of their best songs

John Lennon and Paul McCartney first met each other 60 years ago today, in a chance encounter that would alter the face of music forever. Here are some of our favourite songs written by the Beatles’ duo.

music Updated: Jul 06, 2017 17:13 IST
HT Correspondent
In this June 1967 file photo, Paul McCartney, from left, George Harrison, Ringo Starr and John Lennon of The Beatles appear backstage during a break in rehearsals for the live broadcast on the Our World.
In this June 1967 file photo, Paul McCartney, from left, George Harrison, Ringo Starr and John Lennon of The Beatles appear backstage during a break in rehearsals for the live broadcast on the Our World.(AP)

On July 6, 1957, two teenage boys met at a church fete in Liverpool. They were Paul McCartney and John Lennon. Together, they would go on to become members of the Beatles, and change the music industry forever.

Lennon was 16, and McCartney had just turned 15. As the legend goes, Lennon noticed McCartney’s guitar was in banjo tuning, and offered to fix it for him. They got talking, and performing their favourite songs - Eddie Cochran’s Twenty Flight Rock and Gene Vincent’s Be-Bop-A-Lula.

Lennon was supposed to perform with his band - The Quarrymen - that evening. McCartney was in the audience, looking on. Lennon wondered if he should invite the boy to join his band. He did. And McCartney accepted. Recordings from some of those performances still exist.

In this June 24, 1967 file photo, The Beatles, from left, Paul McCartney, George Harrison, Ringo Starr and John Lennon, appear at EMI Studios in London. (AP)

In a 1980 Playboy interview, conducted the same year he was shot and killed by Mark David Chapman, he said of his partnership with McCartney, “(Paul) provided a lightness, an optimism, while I would always go for the sadness, the discords, the bluesy notes. There was a period when I thought I didn’t write melodies, that Paul wrote those and I just wrote straight, shouting rock ‘n’ roll. But, of course, when I think of some of my own songs—In My Life, or some of the early stuff, This Boy—I was writing melody with the best of them.”

In celebration of this anniversary, here is a selection of some of our favourite songs that emerged from this collaboration.

Yesterday

From their fifth studio album, Help! (1965), it became one of the most-covered songs in history.

Strawberry Fields Forever

It was one of the first songs recorded during sessions for the Beatles eighth studio album, Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. It was based on McCartney’s memories of playing in the garden of a Salvation Army children’s home.

All You Need is Love

First recorded as a non-album single, it was later broadcast as part of Our World, a global TV event that was watched by 400 million viewers in 1967.

I Wanna Be Your Man

Interestingly, it is one of the few Lennon-McCartney songs that was recorded by another band. More interestingly, that band was the Rolling Stones, often considered to be the Beatles closest rivals. It would later be recorded by the Beatles too.

Hey Jude

The song was first released in 1968, written by McCartney to comfort Lennon’s son after their parents’ divorce. It would become the go-to song the band played to close out concerts, and it’s fitting that it is the one to conclude this list, which could have gone on for several pages.

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