Paul McCartney On Why He Didn’t Want To Start A Band With Eric Clapton

The Beatles bassist Paul McCartney has worked with Eric Clapton many times, and at some point, he even thought of forming a band with him, but later decided not to do so.

In a new interview with Mojo4Music, the bassist recalled his first days after the end of The Beatles and the alternatives he had with what seemed like the end of his music career:

“After the end of The Beatles I was faced with certain alternatives. One was to give up music entirely and do God knows what. Another was to start a super-band with very famous people, Eric Clapton and so on. I didn’t like either so I thought: How did The Beatles start? It was a bunch of mates who didn’t know what they were doing.”

Apparently, there was one more option for him. He continued:

“That’s when I realised maybe there is a third alternative: to get a band that isn’t massively famous, to not worry if we don’t know what we’re doing because we would form our character by learning along the way. It was a real act of faith. It was crazy, actually.”

Clapton and McCartney’s Companionship

Clapton’s initial encounter with The Beatles occurred in December 1964, while he was still playing with The Yardbirds. Serving as the opening act for The Fab Four’s Christmas Show at London’s Hammersmith Odeon, Clapton’s connection with the band strengthened, encompassing both professional and personal aspects.

Witnessing The Beatles’ stage performance left Clapton impressed by their smoothness, leading him to admit feeling ‘a little suspicious about ‘what they were up to’ after seeing them live. However, he later acknowledged his initial skepticism was wrong.

After his speculations, the two became friends and worked together several times, including in McCartney’s ‘My Valentine’ and the tribute show for George Harrison at the Royal Albert Hall in London on 29 November 2002.