by Bruce Spizer
(Originally Published April, 2004. Upon completion, be sure to read the note in the black box at the end of the article!)
While on a recent quick vacation in New Orleans, Paul McCartney let his guard down and admitted what some Beatles fans have suspected for years. He confirmed that the “Paul is dead” clues found in several Beatles album covers and songs were deliberately planted by the group as part of an elaborate scheme dating back to the summer of 1966.
According to McCartney, the plan was formulated by manager Brian Epstein. “Brian dropped by the studio to hear the playback of our latest single, ‘Paperback Writer.’ He didn’t like it one bit. ‘Not a love song,’ he said. He was concerned that the press and our fans wouldn’t get it. He told us, ‘People want love songs. They won’t spend money for a song about a novel writer. You boys are gonna blow it with this one.’ But by this time, we were running the show, not Brian. We insisted that ‘Paperback Writer’ would be our next single and told him that the song represented the new direction our songwriting was going in.”
When contacted in London, former Beatles press agent Tony Barrow confirmed Brian’s concerns. “Brian was into traditional love songs. He had told Paul to come up with another ‘Yesterday’ or ‘Michelle’ for the next single. Imagine his shock when he heard ‘Paperback Writer’ and ‘Rain.’ Not only were they not love songs, but they were so loud! We didn’t know it at the time, but the Beatles had recorded the first heavy metal single. Not exactly ‘Till There Was You’ or ‘A Taste Of Honey.’ I was worried, too. I wondered, ‘Had the boys gone too far this time?’”