McCartney rebuffs rumours that Michael Jackson left Beatles songs in will

Sir Paul McCartney has rebuffed rumours that Michael Jackson pledged to leave him his share of the ownership of The Beatles' publishing in his will.

Writing on his official website, McCartney gave the following response:

Some time ago, the media came up with the idea that Michael Jackson was going to leave his share in the Beatles songs to me in his will which was completely made up and something I didn't believe for a second.

Now the report is that I am devastated to find that he didn't leave the songs to me. This is completely untrue. I had not thought for one minute that the original report was true and therefore, the report that I'm devastated is also totally false, so don't believe everything you read folks!

In fact, though Michael and I drifted apart over the years, we never really fell out, and I have fond memories of our time together.

At times like this, the press do tend to make things up, so occasionally, I feel the need to put the record straight.


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13 responses on “McCartney rebuffs rumours that Michael Jackson left Beatles songs in will

  1. James Kalomiris

    The events of this year just gets better and better for Paul.

    One, Phil Spector, his nemisis from the Let it Be days, was convicted of murder and is not sitting in jail.

    two, Michael Jackson, his nemisis that bought the Beatles songs from under his nose, has tragically died.

    Three, Allen Klein, his other nemisis, a contributing factor to the break-up of the Beatles, has also died of Alzheimers.

    Is anyone still left??

  2. steve kirkaldy

    Had john Lennon lived into his later years, or at least into the early to mid 80’s, the Beatles catalogue would have NEVER been sold to Michael Jackson or anyone else for that matter. The Beatle music was important to John. He said to’forget about the superficial beatle stuff,just listen to the music!. That’s not an exact quote but that was his message. Of course, it’s just my opinion about the music sale but I feel strong about it and have always felt that way.

    1. Soolaimon

      You obviously don’t know the facts. The fact is the Klein’s controlled the publishing rights to “most” of the Beatles songs and it was their choice, around the time of the break up, to sell them on. However, everything publish by “Northern Songs” was not included. None of The Beatles wanted the publishing rights to be sold by by this time they had lost control. In fight was a lot to do with it and this was brought on mostly by the fact the Lennon insisted on Yoko be ever present. So if anyone is to blame Lennon is.

  3. Ed

    @steve kirkaldy
    Perhaps you’re not familiar with the long and storied tale of the Beatles’ catalogue, but Paul valiantly tried to outbid Michael for control of ATV Music in 1985 (which owned the publishing rights to all Lennon/McCartney songs as a result of both John and Paul deciding in 1969 to relinquish control of their shares in Northern Songs), even seeking out Yoko as a potential partner in the deal to acquire these songs. John would’ve had no say in these matters even if he had lived into the 1980s. The loss of the Beatles’ catalogue to Michael was a result of years of bad business decisions and unscrupulous management by Dick James et al., not the attitudes of any of the individual Beatles.

    1. Soolaimon

      Wrong again, Northern songs were never sold off. Also, Paul did bid on catalogue but pulled out because he didn’t feel they were worth the price that Jacko was bidding.

  4. Cristina

    It’s true that the loss of The Beatles catalogue was due to the attitudes of their publishers, but Paul didn’t try to outbid Michael, becuase he didn’t know Michael was interested in buying them (though he commented later that Michael would tell him “I’m going to buy your songs”, but he thought he was joking). What Paul has said happened (and I’ve never heard someone contradict him) is that he was offered the songs for 20 million. He felt it wouldn’t look fine if he bought them on his own, so he called Yoko and said let’s buy them 50/50. She said she could get them by half the price, he doubted it, but said OK. While he was waiting, Michael bought them for almost 50 million. Who knows how long it had been between one thing and the another. Could have been months.

    1. Soolaimon

      Paul adviced Jacko to get into buying publishing rights to other people music. Jacko said he would buy the Beatles available songs and Paul laughed but when Jacko proved he really wanted them by bidding high Paul back down.

  5. Max

    I often had the feeling Paul was a little bit to attached to money. And Michael Jackson even more. I also think Paul is intelligent enough to understand that business is business and it is always dirty. Paul is right only for one thing, if you think to somebody as a friend of yours then you do not expect that he does something he knows you will heavily dislike. But some other just thinks again, business is business.
    So perhaps Jackson was not so interested in McCartney friendship.
    Anyway what goes to me? Alligators fights. That’s it.

  6. Soolaimon

    Paul is very business savvy, after all, he may not own the publishing rights to some of the Beatles back catalogue but he still earns from owning the copyright (or half) of all songs written by Lennon & McCartney, which means he earns everytime one of their songs is played ANYWHERE, and he own the publishing rights to songs by many other acts, including Buddy Holly.

    1. Joseph Brush

      According to accounts that I have read, the 1969 acquisition of Northern Songs by ATV deprived Lennon and McCartney of CONTROL of the publishing (and copyright) ownership of their songs affiliated with Northern Songs.
      As a consequence, the duo then elected to exchange their 31% ownership in Northern Songs stock for ATV stock.
      The duo then resigned with Northern Songs (until 1973) and in late 1970 both sued ATV for underpayment of songwriting royalties.
      What were the consequences of Yoko’s supposed presence during some or all of those negotiations?
      According to Apple To The Core, her existence did not shape the content or consequences of the negotiations in any way whatsover.
      The consequences of these negotiations can be traced to the actions of the Eastman family, Allen Klein, John Lennon,and Paul McCartney.
      Meddling from Eastmans caused more damage than anyone else.
      Both John and Paul were not blameless during this time.
      Paul purchased additional shares of Northern Songs behind John’s back which enraged John.
      Not only did Paul want artistic control of the Beatles but he wanted his relatives to manage the group.
      Lennon’s stupid comments and behaviour during the intense negotiations didn’t help the situation either.
      They both made mistakes because they found themselves fighting a battle for control of their songs.
      The real cuprit in this situation was Dick James (and Charles Silver) who created the Northern Songs situation by selling their shares of the company to ATV without notice to John and Paul.
      Later on Elton John and Bernie Taupin lost publishing rights to their early songs to Dick James as well.

  7. Carth

    Relationship with Mccartney vs Millards of profit in later years?
    This is buisness, McCartney is Mccartney and Jackson is Jackson because of it.
    I wouldnt actually be angry at Jackson on Pauls place.

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