Lennon vs McCartney

Towards the end of The Beatles, the inter Beatles relations had come to an absolute low and they were showing their rage against each other, only way they knew, through the means of songs. It all started with the song “Wah Wah” written by George Harrison for his old time friend and the one who introduced him to Lennon and effectively made him a Beatle. McCartney came up with his version of Lennon bashing with the song Too Many People. But the song we are talking about is, How Do You Sleep, John’s response to Paul completing a sort of chain.

George Harrison played guitar on the song, and Klaus Voormann(the man who created the cover of Revolver played bass on the song, both long time McCartney friends, thus hurting him even more. Ringo, the only Beatle who was against the disbanding visited the studio during recording of the song and was reportedly upset saying “That’s enough John”

Having a look at the lyrics, anyone can make out what this song refers to

So Sgt. Pepper took you by surprise
You better see right through that mother’s eyes
Those freaks was right when they said you was dead
(We all know about the Paul is dead controversy)
The one mistake you made was in your head
Ah, how do you sleep?
Ah, how do you sleep at night?

You live with straights who tell you you was king
Jump when your momma tell you anything
The only thing you done was yesterday
(Yesterday is THE most popular song Paul wrote as part of the Beatles)
And since you’re gone you’re just another day
(Another day was the song Paul recorded after leaving the Beatles)
Ah, how do you sleep?
Ah, how do you sleep at night?

Ah, how do you sleep?
Ah, how do you sleep at night?

A pretty face may last a year or two
But pretty soon they’ll see what you can do
The sound you make is muzak to my ears
(Comparing his songs to muzak/Elevator music)
You must have learned something in all those years
Ah, how do you sleep?
Ah, how do you sleep at night?

Paul’s answer to this was Let Me Roll it, a song sung and written in John’s style and can be seen as an olive branch offered to John! Thus trying to tone down the bitter feelings at both ends.


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