Competition and Facilitation: David Kopp’s Examination of the Lennon/McCartney dyad

Recent evaluations of the Beatles songcraft and dynamic have begun to explore the role played by the innate qualities of the group’s individuals. One such area of exploration involves the differing methods and styles of creation within the band. A growing interpretation argues that one of the primary artistic and interpersonal clashes resulted from the contrast between McCartney’s more conceptualized method of songcraft, which contrasted with Harrison and Lennon’s more step-by-step approach.

From 1966 on, McCartney would often come into the studio with almost all the musical facets of a song fully mapped out in his brain, instructing the others how and what to play in order to achieve his vision. In contrast, both Harrison and Lennon often built their songs layer by layer in the studio, trying and then rejecting or accepting musical and production suggestions from the other Beatles, or George Martin.

Continue reading