A letter written by John Lennon to Paul McCartney has surfaced, and it isn’t pretty.
Lennon does not mince words to McCartney, laying into his former bandmate for his overblown sense of the Beatles’ importance, and then further lambasting him for Linda’s open critique of Lennon’s departure from the band in 1970. Lennon did not publicly announce that he was leaving The Beatles.
“Do you really think most of today’s art came about because of the Beatles? — I don’t believe you’re that insane — Paul — do you believe that? When you stop believing it you might wake up! Didn’t we always say we were part of the movement — not all of it? — Of course, we changed the world — but try and follow it through — GET OFF YOUR GOLD DISC AND FLY!”
The introduction of Lennon’s love interest Yoko Ono to the previously tight-knit group caused further strain in the relationship, according to the letter.
Lennon also claims that he and Ono came up with more ideas that “generated intelligent interest” than he did during the entire Beatles run.
“I know the Beatles are ‘quite nice people’—I’m one of them—they’re also just as big bastards as anyone else—so get off your high horse!—by the way—we’ve had more intelligent interest in our new activities in one year than we had throughout the Beatle era,”
You can see the letter in its entirety, below. (WARNING: There is some foul language.)