John Lennon Called This Paul McCartney Song ‘a Good Piece of Work’

John Lennon said he wasn’t interested in what the other Beatles were doing but that didn’t make him “callous.” Despite his words, he liked a 1980s Paul McCartney song.

In 1980, John Lennon said he wasn’t interested in what the other Beatles were doing but that didn’t make him “callous.” Despite his words, he called a Paul McCartney song “a good piece of work.” The song’s music video had Paul looking to The Beatles’ past.

John Lennon felt 1 Paul McCartney song made him sound depressed

During a 1980 interview from the book All We Are Saying: The Last Major Interview with John Lennon and Yoko Ono, John discussed his former bandmates. “I don’t follow what they do now,” he admitted. “Somebody asked me what I thought of Paul’s last album and I made some remark like I thought he was depressed and sad. But then I realized I hadn’t listened to the whole damn thing.” The album in question was McCartney II, Paul’s venture into electronic music.

“I heard one track — the hit, ‘Coming Up,’ which I thought was a good piece of work,” John continued. “Then I heard something else that sounded like he was depressed. But I don’t follow their work.”

John Lennon didn’t care about Wings’ songs or songs by George Harrison and Ringo Starr

John went on to discuss several of his classic rock contemporaries. “I don’t follow Wings, you know,” he said. “I don’t give a s*** what Wings are doing, or what George’s new album is doing or what Ringo is doing. I’m not interested, no more than I am in what Elton John or Bob Dylan is doing.

“It’s not callousness,” John opined. “It’s just that I’m too busy living my own life to be following what other people are doing, whether they’re Beatles or guys I went to college with or people I had intense relationships with before I met The Beatles.”

Paul McCartney broke a taboo and embraced Beatlemania in the ‘Coming Up’ music video

John didn’t want to dwell on The Beatles too much, but Paul certainly did during his “Coming Up” era. According to The Billboard Book of Number 1 Hits, Paul decided to portray several rock stars in the music video for “Coming Up,” including Frank Zappa, Buddy Holly, and a star called “Beatle Paul.” During an interview with the magazine Musician, Paul felt he had broken a taboo by bringing up The Beatles. Making the music video also made him feel like he’d gone back in time 20 years.

While “Coming Up” caught the attention of the “Give Peace a Chance” singer, it doesn’t seem to have much of a legacy. Some of Paul’s solo songs such as “Band on the Run,” “Jet,” and ‘Wonderful Christmastime” remain radio staples. “Coming Up” is obscure today. It’s not as beloved as some of the other early new wave hits such as “Take on Me” by a-ha, “Blue Monday” by New Order, and “Love Will Tear Us Apart” by Joy Division. Of course, that’s nothing a simple Doja Cat sample couldn’t fix!

John and Paul were both averse to looking backward, but “Coming Up” got them to do just that.

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