I remember when we first met, at Woolton, at the village fete. It was a beautiful summer day
and I walked in there and saw you on stage. And you were singing "Come Go With Me," by
the Dell Vikings, But you didn't know the words so you made them up. "Come go with me to
the penitentiary." It's not in the lyrics.
I remember writing our first songs together. We used to go to my house, my Dad's home, and
we used to smoke Ty-Phoo tea with the pipe my dad kept in a drawer. It didn't do much for us
but it got us on the road.
We wanted to be famous.
I remember the visits to your mum's house. Julia was a very handsome woman, very beautiful
woman. She had long, red hair and she played a ukulele. I'd never seen a woman that could
do that. And I remember to having to tell you the guitar chords because you used to play the
And then on your 21st birthday you got 100 pounds off one of your rich relatives up in
Edinburgh, so we decided we'd go to Spain. So we hitch-hiked out of Liverpool, got as far as
Paris, and decided to stop there, for a week. And eventually got our haircut, by a fellow
named Jurgen, and that ended up being the "Beatle haircut."
I remember introducing you to my mate George, my schoolmate, and getting him into the
band by playing "Raunchy" on the top deck of a bus. You were impressed. And we met Ringo
who'd been working the whole season at Butlin's camp - he was a seasoned professional - but
the beard had to go, and it did.
Later on we got a gig at the Cavern Club in Liverpool which was officially a blues club. We
didn't really know any blues numbers. We loved the blues but we didn't know any blues
numbers, so we had announcements like "Ladies and gentlemen, this is a great Big Bill
Broonzy number called "Wake Up Little Suzie." And they kept passing up little notes - "This
is not the blues, this is not the blues. This is pop." But we kept going.
And then we ended up touring. It was a bloke called Larry Parnes who gave us our first tour.
I remember we all changed names for that tour. I changed mine to Paul Ramon, George
became Carl Harrison and, although people think you didn't really change your name, I seem
to remember you were Long John Silver for the duration of that tour. (Bang goes another
We'd been on a van touring later and we'd have the kind of night where the windsceen would
break. We would be on the motorway going back up to Liverpool. It was freezing so we had
to lie on top of each other in the back of the van creating a Beatle sandwich. We got to know
each other. These were the ways we got to know each other.
We got to Hamburg and met the likes of Little Richard, Gene Vincent...I remember Little
Richard inviting us back to his hotel. He was looking at Ringo's ring and said, "I love that
ring." He said, "I've got a ring like that. I could give you a ring like that." So we all went
back to the hotel with him. (We never got a ring.)
We went back with Gene Vincent to his hotel room once. It was all going fine until he reached
in his bedside drawer and pulled out a gun. We' said "Er, we've got to go, Gene, we've got to
go..." We got out quick!
And then came the USA -- New York City -- where we met up with Phil Spector, the Ronettes,
Supremes, our heroes, our heroines. And then later in L.A., we met up with Elvis Presley for
one great evening. We saw the boy on his home territory. He was the first person I ever saw
with a remote control on a TV. Boy! He was a hero, man.
And then later, Ed Sullivan. We'd wanted to be famous, now we were getting really famous. I
mean imagine meeting Mitzi Gaynor in Miami!
Later, after that, recording at Abbey Road. I still remember doing "Love Me Do." You
officially had the vocal "love me do" but because you played the harmonica, George Martin
suddenly said in the middle is the session, "Will Paul sing the line "love me do?", the crucial
line. I can still hear it to this day - you would go "Whaaa whaa," and I'd go "loove me
doo-oo." Nerves, man.
I remember doing the vocal to "Kansas City" -- well I couldn't quite get it, because it's hard
to do that stuff. You know, screaming out the top of your head. You came down from the
control room and took me to one side and said "You can do it, you've just got to scream, you
can do it." So, thank you. Thank you for that. I did it.
I remember writing "A Day in the Life" with you, and the little look we gave each other when
we wrote the line "I'd love to turn you on." We kinda knew what we were doing, you know. A
sneaky little look.
After that there was this girl called Yoko. Yoko Ono. She showed up at my house one day. It
was John Cage's birthday and she said she wanted to get hold of manuscripts of various
composers to give to him, and she wanted one from me and you. So I said," Well it's ok by
me. but you'll have to go to John."
And she did...
After that I set up a couple of Brennell recording machines we used to have and you stayed up
all night and recorded "Two Virgins." But you took the cover yourselves -- nothing to do with
And then, after that there were the phone calls to you. The joy for me after all the business
shit that we'd gone through was that we were actually getting back together and
communicating once again. And the joy as you told me about how you were baking bread
now. And how you were playing with your little baby, Sean. That was great for me because it
gave me something to hold on to.
So now, years on, here we are. All these people. Here we are, assembled, to thank you for
everything that you mean to all of us.
This letter comes with love, from your friend Paul.
John Lennon, you've made it. Tonight you are in the Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame.
God bless you.