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Paul on John's death

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Last post 28/07/2020

Posted by Plastic Soul Man

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      A friend of mine posted this on FB:

      Finally heard something new about John Lennon's death and Macca. Just been watching: Top of the Pops: The Story of 1980. Now, we all know what happened that year. Well, BBC TV and Radio presenter, Richard Skinner, said he woke up at 4am and heard on the World Service that Lennon had been shot dead. He drove straight to Radio One's newsbeat office and when he got there, he remembered he had Macca's home number in his phone book. He called it and someone answered and he passed on the news - they didn't know. He said he would very much like to hear Paul's comment and if he felt like calling back he'd like to speak to him, but understood he might not feel like it.
      A while later Paul did phone. Skinner was into a private room to take the call. Macca refused to go on air, but spoke to Skinner for quite a while about John and was very very upset. He said that he'd been due to meet John that month to do some recordings and writing, but there were problems with the booking of the studio, so had rearranged to do so in January.

        This is the first I've heard of theme being on the verge of working together again at the time of John's death. Is this show available online somewhere?

          Nancy R:A friend of mine posted this on FB:

          Finally heard something new about John Lennon's death and Macca. Just been watching: Top of the Pops: The Story of 1980. Now, we all know what happened that year. Well, BBC TV and Radio presenter, Richard Skinner, said he woke up at 4am and heard on the World Service that Lennon had been shot dead. He drove straight to Radio One's newsbeat office and when he got there, he remembered he had Macca's home number in his phone book. He called it and someone answered and he passed on the news - they didn't know. He said he would very much like to hear Paul's comment and if he felt like calling back he'd like to speak to him, but understood he might not feel like it.
          A while later Paul did phone. Skinner was into a private room to take the call. Macca refused to go on air, but spoke to Skinner for quite a while about John and was very very upset. He said that he'd been due to meet John that month to do some recordings and writing, but there were problems with the booking of the studio, so had rearranged to do so in January.

          A potential reunion between John Lennon and Paul McCartney, and the studio couldn't make room to accomodate them?

          There's something fishy about this...

            I do remember hearing this story back in 1980. THE BEATLES rumors really began to build momentum in 1980 especially after the partial BEATLES reunion (Without John) at Eric Clapton's/Patty's wedding with George as Best Man. Paul, George, Ringo and Eric would jam together on stage, I would have given anything to see that!

            And with John marking his return to music in 1980 after a five year retirement, he would comment later that he would have attended Eric's and Patty's wedding that night had his son Sean not been ill that day. Just imagine, if Sean would not have been ill that day, John would have attended the wedding that night and hung out with the other three resulting in THE BEATLES reuniting on stage! There is not a doubt in my mind that it would have happened that way. It was that close at that moment.

            And knowing this, along with plans in which John and Paul would get together and write some songs together in January 1981, all we can do is speculate the possibility of whether THE BEATLES would have reunited or not.

            I'm going to stop here and let all of you comment further on this subject, I'm very curious as to what all of you think and have to say in this matter. Take care.

              Sgt._Pepper:

              Nancy R:A friend of mine posted this on FB:

              Finally heard something new about John Lennon's death and Macca. Just been watching: Top of the Pops: The Story of 1980. Now, we all know what happened that year. Well, BBC TV and Radio presenter, Richard Skinner, said he woke up at 4am and heard on the World Service that Lennon had been shot dead. He drove straight to Radio One's newsbeat office and when he got there, he remembered he had Macca's home number in his phone book. He called it and someone answered and he passed on the news - they didn't know. He said he would very much like to hear Paul's comment and if he felt like calling back he'd like to speak to him, but understood he might not feel like it.
              A while later Paul did phone. Skinner was into a private room to take the call. Macca refused to go on air, but spoke to Skinner for quite a while about John and was very very upset. He said that he'd been due to meet John that month to do some recordings and writing, but there were problems with the booking of the studio, so had rearranged to do so in January.

              A potential reunion between John Lennon and Paul McCartney, and the studio couldn't make room to accomodate them?

              There's something fishy about this...

              That's what I was thinking too when I first read about this yesterday. Unless I hear news like this come out of Paul's own mouth, I don't feel I can trust it.

              Also, he claims to be the one that called Paul's house to break the news about John, though wasn't it Paul's manager that called to break the news? Paul's phone wasn't plugged in to the jack until he plugged it back in when he got up, so how could this DJ have even called to leave word with anybody? Linda wasn't even home at the time when Paul received the call either.

                It's easy to make stuff up 34 years after the fact. But the fact is that John publicly quashed a Beatles reunion in the Playboy interview before he died. There were no plans for John to play together with Paul, or Ringo, or George, or all three. Time may have changed that if he lived of course, but those were his words before he passed. Paul has never indicated otherwise.

                  beatlesfanrandy:It's easy to make stuff up 34 years after the fact. But the fact is that John publicly quashed a Beatles reunion in the Playboy interview before he died. There were no plans for John to play together with Paul, or Ringo, or George, or all three. Time may have changed that if he lived of course, but those were his words before he passed. Paul has never indicated otherwise.

                  Hi beatlesfanrandy! I have the Playboy interviews book from 6 December 1980, I do remember reading that John was against THE BEATLES reuniting. However, his relationship with Paul was beginning to improve so its really anyone's guess. Philip Norman's book "SHOUT, THE BEATLES IN THEIR GENERATION" also stresses that Lennon was against a BEATLES reunion. I've also read as well as seen in some Lennon interviews that he was in favor of a BEATLES reunion. In my opinion THE BEATLES wounds were slowly healing, time needed to go by without being forced. Take care.

                    Bruce M.:This is the first I've heard of theme being on the verge of working together again at the time of John's death. Is this show available online somewhere?

                    I don't know, I was just posting what he had written and I'm sure you guys will take it with a grain of salt (as the above posts indicated) Just though it was interesting. Paul never identified who called him to tell him about John (not that I've ever read)

                      Paul recounting John's death in a David Frost interview...

                      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lwita3dOpuE

                        jl4761:

                        beatlesfanrandy:It's easy to make stuff up 34 years after the fact. But the fact is that John publicly quashed a Beatles reunion in the Playboy interview before he died. There were no plans for John to play together with Paul, or Ringo, or George, or all three. Time may have changed that if he lived of course, but those were his words before he passed. Paul has never indicated otherwise.

                        Hi beatlesfanrandy! I have the Playboy interviews book from 6 December 1980, I do remember reading that John was against THE BEATLES reuniting. However, his relationship with Paul was beginning to improve so its really anyone's guess. Philip Norman's book "SHOUT, THE BEATLES IN THEIR GENERATION" also stresses that Lennon was against a BEATLES reunion. I've also read as well as seen in some Lennon interviews that he was in favor of a BEATLES reunion. In my opinion THE BEATLES wounds were slowly healing, time needed to go by without being forced. Take care.

                        I agree. But I've never seen anything that Paul said about him and John or The Beatles reuniting before The Beatles Anthology came out.

                          I don't know who told what to whom when, but if you're not the guy who told Paul about John and you claim you are, you've got serious problems.

                            This particular subject hasn't been discussed in years and I don't recall ever reading it in any BEATLES or EX-BEATLES books (I may be wrong). Maybe this is a personal subject that Paul would rather keep to himself.

                              HaileyMcComet:I don't know who told what to whom when, but if you're not the guy who told Paul about John and you claim you are, you've got serious problems.

                              I think i've read Richard Skinner say it was him who told Paul before, but only in the last couple of years, and i can't remember where (sorry!)

                              He didn't say the bit about them being about to write together though.

                                This IS quite a bombshell and I'm surprised it hasn't become headlines.

                                Richard Skinner has never been a man to make up things. He's a notably reliable and stable character as a broadcaster and has had a LOT of interview time with Paul over the years so I find it difficult to believe he's not telling the truth as it would hardly go unnoticed by Paul if he was spouting bs.

                                Also, it does instantly tie together a lot of threads, some of which had lain dormant until the YouTube era of unearthed interviews etc toward a Paul/John reunion.

                                One being that John had told all of his Liverpool family that he was coming back soon, and Two that he had told Jack Douglas that he and Paul were to be writing again.
                                There are many more such previously-discounted rumours and statements from otherwise reliable people which have pointed to this.

                                Paul had already gone solo again with 'McCartney II' and John had gone on record saying that he'd been inspired back to work by the appearance of the 'Coming Up' single earlier in the year.

                                Not only that but John had previously testified in a court statement in a copyright case that he was planning to reform The Beatles.

                                Looks like there's an untold story here and that Richard Skinner has started to tell it!

                                  I do recall reading in the late 70s that all of the Beatles had discussed some sort of documentary history of the band to be called The Long And Winding Road, and that John and the rest agreed to record new music, maybe just instrumentals or something. Then John was shot. The project later became the Anthology.

                                    Any talk of a genuine reunion or John going back home just depresses me more. Just widens the gulf between what could've been and what didn't eventuate. Geez, imagine if it all worked out the way we all wanted it. How awesome.

                                      michaelk:This IS quite a bombshell and I'm surprised it hasn't become headlines.

                                      Richard Skinner has never been a man to make up things. He's a notably reliable and stable character as a broadcaster and has had a LOT of interview time with Paul over the years so I find it difficult to believe he's not telling the truth as it would hardly go unnoticed by Paul if he was spouting bs.

                                      Also, it does instantly tie together a lot of threads, some of which had lain dormant until the YouTube era of unearthed interviews etc toward a Paul/John reunion.

                                      One being that John had told all of his Liverpool family that he was coming back soon, and Two that he had told Jack Douglas that he and Paul were to be writing again.
                                      There are many more such previously-discounted rumours and statements from otherwise reliable people which have pointed to this.

                                      Paul had already gone solo again with 'McCartney II' and John had gone on record saying that he'd been inspired back to work by the appearance of the 'Coming Up' single earlier in the year.

                                      Not only that but John had previously testified in a court statement in a copyright case that he was planning to reform The Beatles.

                                      Looks like there's an untold story here and that Richard Skinner has started to tell it!

                                      It hasn't become headlines because it isn't true. Another nice try at revisionism. There were no plans to reunite The Beatles before John died. John emphatically said so. The only ones who would really know otherwise would be Paul and Yoko, and neither of them has ever said. We can all wish it would have happened, especially in light of the "Threetles" reunion on The Beatles Anthology. But that's all it is. Wishful thinking.

                                        The Skinner story was very interesting and could well be true. Anyone who knows even the barest facts of the history of Lennon and McCartney will remember,. of course, that the so-called feud was very overrated. Basically it was resentment at the end of the Beatles due to Macca's increasing control and Lennon's lack of confidence (unstable mind due to drugs) and the fact that McCartney got his first solo album out before anyone else. Lennon, according to George Martin, changed his mind as often as his socks, so it is very possible that they would have done something. In 1973 Lennon, interviewed by his biggest hanger on, Elliot Mintz, said he wouldn't rule out getting back with the Beatles 'I work on instinct' he said and, in 1975, promoting Walls and Bridges, he told Bob Harris on the The Old Grey Whistle Test that 'forget what the commentators think', or along those lines, 'Paul and I are ok'. Just before he died, in probably his last interview, yes, the very last one, I think for some guy from San Francisco, He said 'Paul and I were like brothers'. These are a just a few incidents which are on record....what about the rest that have been private!! So anyone who thinks that Lennon, had he lived, would never have collaborated again with McCartney, one of only two people that Yoko phoned immediately after John's death, is not very well informed. Oh, and Yoko said in the past few years that 'John loved Paul'

                                          I've long been meaning to respond to this thread.

                                          When I saw this doc just over a year ago, after a glass or two of Malbec, I was awestruck! What an amazing story!

                                          However, it is not clear that Skinner got thru to Macca himself by phone; unlikely he would have his actual number and in a recent interview Macca himself said that it was his then-manager who told him the news of Lennon's death by phone. So maybe Skinner called up the manager, that sounds possible.

                                          Then again, I also read that the first they heard of it was when Linda did the school run, and one of the mums told her.

                                          Then there is the story that Yoko himself got in touch with Paul and the other Beatles, as related in Shout! Except neither Paul nor George verify this, unless it was a case of Yoko calling their 'people' to convey the news, rather than them personally. Harrison revealed on the Aspel show that he was called while in a hotel, and it wasn't Yoko. Myself, I would guess Ono had better things to do at a time of deep grief than get on the blower to your husband's former band mates whom you haven't seen for years, so I wouldn't rebuke her for not doing so, but this might have been a sugar-coated depiction of the story she put out.

                                          As for the reunion, well, it is odd that Skinner should say this, after all Macca has never mentioned it, and he has always wanted to press the point that he and Lennon were not estranged at the time of his death. It might just be too raw to contemplate what might have been. In one book on Lennon I read that Macca called him up during the Double Fantasy sessions, but Yoko refused to put the call through. This sounds awful, but a source might be one of the hangers on that they fell out with and later sold their story. Or the incident might be true, but Yoko thought, not knowing what would later come, 'Blimey, back in the studio and already his old school chum wants to jump on the band wagon! Back off, mate!' which would have been reasonable frankly. Or maybe none of it ever happened at all.

                                          Andy Peebles popped up around the time of the anniversary last year to make his adventurous claims too; that it simply wasn't true that Lennon didn't have bodyguards, he had two who went with him everywhere, and were there when he interviewed Lennon, but oddly on the night in question they had the day off. Now that sounds a bit like the CCTV cameras switched off in the tunnel where Diana had her crash, but then again it might be true but innocuous. Maybe Lennon's movements were a bit off that night, maybe the bodyguards were given the night off and later Ono didn't want them named for fear of the exposure or ridicule it would put on them. Or maybe Ono and Lennon sacked them and lived (or not) to regret it...

                                          It is all rather fascinating.

                                            Inspector Sands:
                                            Then again, I also read that the first they heard of it was when Linda did the school run, and one of the mums told her.

                                            No i'd always heard that Paul was alone when he got the call because linda was out taking the kids to school, and when she walked back in Paul was white and she immediately knew just by looking at him something massive had happened.. then he told her.

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