The legendary bassist of The Beatles, Paul McCartney recently made claims about former bandmate, John Lennon. It has been noted that several elements of “Too Many People” reference John Lennon and Yoko Ono. McCartney had used the song to be vocal about the distaste towards Lennon’s demeanor during the Fab Four’s final years, but also Yoko Ono’s increasing involvement with the legendary band. Additionally, “Too Many People” was just one of the several songs that McCartney and Lennon wrote about each other during that period.
Paul McCartney opens up on the blows to John Lennon
McCartney recently claimed that Lennon was the one who started the back-and-forth strikes, even though the latter’s sharpest “diss” came on the track “How Do You Sleep” from Lennon’s iconic album “Imagine”, released later that same year. Eventually, McCartney offered a peace treaty through the song “Dear Friend”, which effectively ended the musical exchange. Of “Too Many People”, McCartney said (via MusicRadar):
“‘Too Many People, this song was written a year or so after the Beatles break-up. At the time, John [Lennon] was firing missiles at me with his songs, and one or two of them were quite cruel.
“I don’t know what he hoped to gain, other than punch me in the face, the whole thing really annoyed me. I decided to turn my missiles on him too, but I’m not really that kind of writer, so it was quite veiled. It was the 1970s equivalent of what might today be called a diss track.
“An idea of too many people preaching practices, it was definitely aimed at John telling everyone what they ought to do. I just got fed up being told what to do, so I wrote this song… The first verse and the chorus have pretty much all the anger I could muster, and when I did the vocal on the second line, ‘Too many reaching for a piece of cake,’ I remember singing it as ‘piss off cake,’ which you can hear if you really listen to it.”
McCartney has been noted to have taken subtle jabs at Lennon and he spoke about how writing the song didn’t exactly give him a sense of joy or fulfillment:
“Again, I was getting back at John but my heart wasn’t really in it. ‘You’ve made this break so good luck with it,’ it was pretty mild, I didn’t really come out with any savagery. It’s actually a fairly upbeat song, it doesn’t really sound that vitriolic. And if you didn’t know the story, I don’t know that you’d be able to guess at the anger behind its writing.”
The Beatles split after a successful career in popular music after only ten years of work together.