Mike Love Explains The Idea Behind His Attack To Paul McCartney

When the Beach Boys got inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame back in 1988, Mike Love delivered a speech that included The Beatles bassist Paul McCartney. McCartney couldn’t make it to the ceremony that night, and it made Love visibly upset.

In a recent interview with Ultimate Classic Rock, Love explained why it made him so upset that McCartney was not there and explained the idea behind his attack to him. He said:

“I was a little upset that Paul McCartney didn’t come to the induction of the Beatles because he wasn’t having a great time with Yoko Ono. Diana Ross didn’t come for the Supremes induction for whatever reason. Berry Gordy was being honored and they have a kid named Rhonda together. Rhon-da!”

He added he couldn’t even finish his speech that day:

“Anyway, the thing is, I think that music has the power to unite people. Instead of chronology and divisiveness, it should be about what we can do for the world. That’s my principal philosophy. I didn’t address that issue. I wasn’t able to finish my thinking, because the band sort of played me off. But you know, my heart is there. I want music to uplift people. I want us to do things good for the world. God only knows, the world needs it right now.”

What Caused The Harsh Comments?

During the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame’s third annual induction ceremony, The Beach Boys were in the spotlight. However, Mike Love’s speech was different than others’. After everyone around him made their speeches, Love went on stage to start off by recalling writing songs with his bandmate Brian Wilson.

But then Love’s speech took a surprising turn. He began criticizing other musicians, starting with McCartney’s absence from the Beatles’ induction due to a lawsuit with Ringo Starr and Yoko Ono. He said:

“I also think it’s sad that there are other people who aren’t here tonight. Those are the people who have passed away, those are the obvious ones. The other not-so-obvious ones are people like Paul McCartney who couldn’t be here tonight because he’s in a lawsuit with Ringo and Yoko. That’s what he sent a telegram to some high-priced attorney in this room.”

He didn’t stop with just McCartney though. After calling out Paul McCartney, Love didn’t hold back and took swipes at Diana Ross and Mick Jagger too. Bob Dylan and Elton John both jokingly said they were grateful they weren’t mentioned in the speech.

You can watch Love’s whole speech down below.