The Beatles song John Lennon regretted letting Paul McCartney write
When The Beatles first broke out of Liverpool and begun making records in earnest there was delightful energy to everything they did. Brimming with enthusiasm and effervescent pop futurism, the group—and their principal songwriters John Lennon and Paul McCartney—were churning out hit songs like there was no tomorrow.
Being in the Fab Four was, apart from hard work, a feverishly creative place, encouraging everyone to write their own songs and not feel compelled to push everything through the lens of the three other members. While nobody would know it, it would start an internal competition that would never truly end.
After The Beatles broke up and the acknowledgement of their place in history was confirmed, the group started to open up a little bit more about their time within the biggest band on the planet. As one might imagine, the man happiest to talk? John Lennon, of course.
The founder of the band and the well-oiled mouthpiece, Lennon was always happy to share a few words on the band and their career in the aftermath of their disbandment. Often, those conversations were littered with barbs and compliments in equal measurements, it saw Lennon pick out his favourite songs and those he hated most, usually at the centre of both was Paul McCartney.
Lennon dominated much of the early writing for the band but it was on their record With The Beatles that McCartney dropped “one of his first biggies,” according to Lennon, the brilliant song ‘All My Loving’. It was also a rare song for Macca as it remained one that Lennon loved throughout his life.
As well as referring to the song as a “biggie”, he later, in his 1980 interview with Playboy said: “‘All My Loving’ is Paul, I regret to say. Because it’s a damn fine piece of work. But I play a pretty mean guitar in back.” Guitars aside, it’s nice to see that Lennon was happy to compliment Paul when he saw fit.
The track was a departure for Macca too, “Yeah, I wrote that one. It was the first song I ever wrote where I had the words before the music. I wrote the words on a bus on tour, then we got the tune when I arrived there. The first time I’ve ever worked upside down.”
The song drove a serious amount of excitement around the band and gained considerable airplay across the US, Canada and, of course, Britain. It marked a change of atmosphere for the group as it noted Macca’s impending rise to the top of the songwriting pile and the competitive edge it would always give the band.
But, for now, best to sit back and enjoy the unbridled energy of youth and listen to The Beatles sing ‘All My Loving’.