The Story Of How Paul McCartney Met John Lennon And Taught Him Guitar Tricks

John Lennon and Paul McCartney are without a doubt two of the most brilliant and highly appreciated musicians of rock history. Aside from being the co-founders of the iconic band, the Beatles, the duo also established the Lennon-McCartney Songwriting partnership which is the most successful music collaboration of all time by records sold.

During their partnership, they released 180 jointly credited songs, most of which were recorded by the Beatles. Although the musical duo were childhood friends, their differences brought the end of the band’s career in 1970. However, today we’re going to talk about how their friendship started, rather than how it ended.

When Did Paul McCartney And John Lennon Meet?

John Lennon on stage with his checkered shirt and Paul McCartney in the white shirt to the right, who’s standing up and looking down.

It was on July 6, 1957, when 16-year-old John Lennon was a member of the Quarry Men and the band got a gig at St. Peter’s Woolton’s Parish Church in Liverpool. The band was there for a garden party and McCartney had also attended with his friend Ivan Vaughan in order to watch the young band who took their name from the high school they all attended, the Quarry Bank High School.

Ivan Vaughan knew the Quarry Men as he occasionally joined them to play tea-chest bass and after Paul McCartney asked him about the band, Ivan offered to introduce them. Paul met John and they ended up chatting for a while, during which McCartney taught Lennon some guitar tricks.

What Did Paul McCartney Teach John Lennon?

The Quarry Men, 6 July 1957

While talking with John Lennon, the 15-year-old Paul McCartney, who was a self-taught guitar player, showed Lennon how to tune his guitar. He then played some songs for him, including Eddie Cochran’s ‘Twenty Flight Rock’ and Gene Vincent’s ‘Be-Bop-A-Lula,’ all to impress John.

Here’s how McCartney recalled that day during an interview with the Record Collector in 1995:

“I remember John singing a song called ‘Come Go With Me.’ He’d heard it on the radio. He didn’t really know the verses, but he knew the chorus. The rest he just made up himself. I just thought, ‘Well, he looks good, he’s singing well and he seems like a great lead singer to me.’ Of course, he had his glasses off, so he really looked suave. I remember John was good.”

It seems like Paul McCartney also left a good impression on John Lennon with his great guitar playing and tricks as after the show, Lennon and his bandmate Pete Shotton started discussing whether they should ask Paul to join the Quarry Men. They asked him a couple of days later and after giving it some thought, Paul agreed to become a member, and the rest is history.