John Lennon Gave Paul McCartney Credit for a Song That Was Actually Co-Authored by Yoko Ono

John Lennon co-wrote songs with his partner Yoko Ono. After feeling guilty about wanting to leave the Beatles, he even gave Paul McCartney credit for a song co-authored by Ono. Here’s what we learned from Skywriting by Word of Mouth.

John Lennon was a Beatles member with Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, and George Harrison

Paul McCartney and John Lennon hold their guitars while on the set of The Ed Sullivan Show
The Beatles’ Paul McCartney and John Lennon hold their guitars while on the set of The Ed Sullivan Show | Bettmann via Getty Images

After recording and releasing music for several years, the Beatles officially disbanded in 1970 after a self-interview from Paul McCartney. Later, Lennon commented on his decision to ask for a “divorce.”

Yoko Ono actually co-authored ‘Give Peace a Chance,’ according to John Lennon

Thanks to Skywriting by Word of Mouth, fans learned about Lennon’s experience in the Beatles. Even in 1965, this songwriter was thinking about leaving the group, saying that life “had become a trap. A tape loop.”

“When I finally had the guts to tell the other three that I, quote, wanted a divorce, unquote, they knew it was for real, unlike Ringo and George’s previous threats to leave,” Lennon wrote. “I must say I felt guilty for springing it on them at such short notice.” 

“After all, I had Yoko – they only had each other. I was guilty enough to give McCartney credit as a co-writer on my first independent single instead of giving it to Yoko,” he added, “who had actually co-authored it (‘Give Peace a Chance’).”

“Give Peace a Chance” was released before the Beatles’ official break up. According to Lennon’s website, the track “reached No. 2 in the UK singles charts” and marked Lennon’s first single released separately from the band. The B-Side, “Remember Love,” was written by Yoko and recorded in the same room.

“It wasn’t like, ‘You have to have peace!’ Just give it a chance,” Lennon said in 1980, according to the same website. “We ain’t giving any gospel here – just saying how about this version for a change? We think we have the right to have a say in the future. And we think the future is made in your mind.”

The Spotify track, remastered in 2010, holds over 14 million plays, making it one of the most popular Lennon originals. The solo artist later released “Imagine,” “Kiss Kiss Kiss,” “Beautiful Boy (Darling Boy),” and “Watching the Wheels.”

John Lennon released singles like ‘Give Peace a Chance’

“Give Peace a Chance” was just one form of peaceful protest employed by Lennon and his partner. The couple spent their honeymoon hosting the infamous “bed-in for peace” at their hotel room in the Amsterdam Hilton Hotel, followed by a second bed-in at the Queen Elizabeth Hotel in Montreal. 

“We decided that if we were going to do anything like get married that we would dedicate it to peace,” Lennon said during an interview with Rolling Stone in 1971. “And during that period, because we are what we are, it evolved that somehow we ended up being responsible to produce peace.”

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