Lennon–McCartney - Joint Credit

Joint Credit

McCartney and Lennon met in July 1957 as teenagers and began writing songs together; they agreed that all songs written by them (whether individually or jointly) should be credited to both of them. The precise date of the agreement is unknown; however, Lennon spoke in 1980 of an informal agreement between him and McCartney made "when we were fifteen or sixteen". Two songs written (primarily by Lennon) in 1957, "Hello Little Girl" and "One After 909", were credited to the partnership when published in the following decade. The earliest Beatles recording credited to Lennon–McCartney to be officially released is "You'll Be Mine", recorded at home in 1960 and included on Anthology 1 35 years later.

However, some other compositions from the band's early years are not credited to the partnership. "In Spite of All the Danger", a 1958 composition that the band (then The Quarrymen) paid to record to disc, is attributed to McCartney and George Harrison. "Cayenne", recorded at the same time as "You'll Be Mine", is a solo McCartney composition. "Cry for a Shadow", recorded during the Beatles' sessions with Tony Sheridan in June 1961, was written by Lennon and Harrison.

By 1962, the joint credit agreement was in effect. From the time of The Beatles' first A&R audition in January that year, until Lennon's announcement in September 1969 that he was leaving the band, virtually all songs by McCartney or Lennon were published with joint credit. The only exceptions were a handful of the McCartney compositions released by other artists (viz. "Woman" by Peter and Gordon in 1966, "Cat Call" by Chris Barber in 1967, and "Penina" by Carlos Mendes in 1969).

After the partnership had ended, Lennon and McCartney each gave account of their individual contribution to each jointly-credited song. In only four known cases is there a substantial difference between their recollections:

  • "Help!" has been universally-recognized as solely a Lennon-penned composition. However, Paul McCartney claims to have helped on the "countermelody", estimating the song as "70-30" to Lennon. During an interview with Playboy in 1984, McCartney stated that "John and I wrote it at his house in Weybridge for the film".
  • Although Lennon said that McCartney helped only with "the middle eight" (implying a short section) of "In My Life", McCartney has said that he wrote the entire melody, taking inspiration from Smokey Robinson songs.
  • McCartney said that he wrote "Eleanor Rigby" on a piano in the Ashers' music room in Wimpole Street, and later played it to Donovan before it was finished—a claim which Donovan confirmed. Lennon said, in 1972, that he wrote 70 percent of the "Eleanor Rigby" lyrics, but Pete Shotton, Lennon's childhood friend, remembered Lennon's contribution as being "absolutely nil".
  • Whilst Lennon said that McCartney's contribution to "Ticket to Ride" was limited to "the way Ringo played the drums," McCartney said "we sat down and wrote it together... give him 60 percent of it."
  • The song "And Your Bird Can Sing" is supposedly primarily by John Lennon, however Paul McCartney claims to have helped on the lyric, estimating the song as "80-20" to Lennon.
  • According to McCartney, "Tell Me What You See" was written 60% by him, 40% by Lennon. In a 1994 interview however, McCartney claimed it entirely as his.

Read more about this topic:  Lennon–McCartney

Famous quotes containing the words credit and/or joint:

    The thief steals from himself. The swindler swindles himself. For the real price is knowledge and virtue, whereof wealth and credit are signs. These signs, like paper money, may be counterfeited or stolen, but that which they represent, namely, knowledge and virtue, cannot be counterfeited or stolen.
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803–1882)

    I learned from the git-go in the joint to get in touch with the soft, nurturing side of myself, the feminine side.
    Wesley Strick, U.S. screenwriter, and Martin Scorsese. Max Cady (Robert DeNiro)