How The Beatles Icons Paul McCartney And John Lennon Treated People In Real Life, Pete Townshend Explains

During an interview with Rolling Stone, the Who co-founder and guitarist Pete Townshend revealed what he thinks about the Beatles legends Paul McCartney and John Lennon based on how they interacted with the people around them while exposing some unknown details about the inside conversations that the band members had.

As you know the Who and the Beatles were two of the most popular bands in the ’60s and ’70s and there were multiple occasions that the band members got to meet each other and spend time together. However, this doesn’t mean that there wasn’t any rivalry between the iconic bands, and in fact, during a recent interview, Pete Townshend claimed that The Beatles’ ‘Sgt. Pepper’ was actually based on an idea stolen by the Who.

While both bands were climbing the ladder of international fame, Pete Townshend gave an interview to Rolling Stone in 1968 and revealed his real thoughts on Paul McCartney and John Lennon based on how they treated the people around them. Townshend said that the main difference between McCartney and Lennon is the way they ‘behave with the people that are around them.’

Pete said that when John Lennon would join a group of people, he would sit down and ‘immediately acknowledge the fact that he’s John Lennon and that everything for the rest of the night is going to revolve around him.’ He would relax, enjoy being the center of attention and talk about minor things, ‘dribble little jokes,’  get high and do funny things to have a good time.

On the other hand, Pete described Paul McCartney as the guy who wants to have a ‘genuine conversation‘ and relationship with the people that he spends time with. He went on to say that the conversations that he’s had with Macca have been highly inspirational as he’s always praised Pete’s musical genius and made an effort to connect with him. McCartney’s attitude towards Townshend both as a fellow musician and as a ‘huge monumental Beatle fan‘ encouraged Pete to be an ‘even bigger fan’ of the band.

Here’s what Pete Townshend said during the interview:

“I had an incredible conversation once with Paul McCartney. The difference between the way Lennon and McCartney behave with the people that are around them is incredible.”

He went on to say:

“What Lennon does is he sits down, immediately acknowledges the fact that he’s John Lennon and that everything for the rest of the night is going to revolve around him. He completely relaxes and lets everybody feel at ease and just speaks dribble little jokes, little rubbish like he’s got, ‘In His Own Write’ and little things. Like he’ll start to dribble on and get stoned and do silly things and generally have a good time.”

As for Paul McCartney, Townshend said:

“But Paul McCartney worries, he wants a genuine conversation, a genuine relationship, starting off from square one. One of them is fucking Paul McCartney, a Beatle, the other one is me, a huge monumental Beatle fan who still gets a kick out of sitting and talking to Paul McCartney. And he’s starting to tell me that he digs me and that we’re on an even par so that we can begin the conversation which completely makes me even a bigger fan.”

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