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Paul McCartney once revealed how he and John Lennon wrote The Beatles’ “Love Me Do.” Subsequently, he said he and John lied about the song’s backstory. Paul said they spread falsehoods for a specific reason.

The Beatles' John Lennon and Paul McCartney wearing suits during the "Love Me Do" era
The Beatles’ John Lennon and Paul McCartney | Fox Photos/Getty Images

Paul McCartney said 1 of The Beatles’ songs ‘was the culmination of it when we finally got a song we could actually record’

In the 1997 book Paul McCartney: Many Years From Now, the “Ebony and Ivory” singer discussed his early songs. “I did a very bad song called ‘Like Dreamers Do’, which the Applejacks did later,” he recalled. “‘One After 909’ was getting a little bit better, then came ‘Love Me Do,’ which was the culmination of it when we finally got a song we could actually record.”

Paul explained how “Love Me Do” came together. “‘Love Me Do’ was completely co-written,” he remembered. “It might have been my original idea, but some of them really were 50-ej’s, and I think that one was. It was just Lennon and McCartney sitting down without either of us having a particularly original idea.”

Why Paul McCartney and John Lennon lied about the backstory of The Beatles’ ‘Love Me Do’

Paul said he and John lied about “Love Me Do,” saying it was one of their later songs. “We used to try and persuade people that we had about a hundred songs before ‘Love Me Do,'” he said. “That was a slight exaggeration.”

“It was probably more like four — less than 20 anyway, but if you were writing off to journalists, ‘Dear Sir, We have a beat combo you might be interested in writing up …’ it sounded better to say, ‘We have written over one hundred songs,'” Paul continued. “Love Me Do” became The Beatles’ first single in the United Kingdom.


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‘Love Me Do’ became a hit once in the United States and three times in the United Kingdom

“Love Me Do” became a huge hit in the United States. For one week, it topped the Billboard Hot 100. “Love Me Do” stayed on the chart for 14 weeks in total. The track appeared on the album 1962-1966. The album reached No. 3 on the Billboard 200 and stayed on the chart for 175 weeks.

The Official Charts Company reports “Love Me Do” was considerably more popular in the U.K., where it became a hit three times. In 1962, the song reached No. 17, and in 1982, it reached No. 4. In 1992, it reached No. 53. Meanwhile, 1962-1966 hit No. 3 in the U.K. and remained on the chart for 167 weeks.

“Love Me Do” became a massive success even if Paul and John lied about its backstory.