The Myth of the Lone Creative Genius (The Atlantic)

BeatlesThough Paul McCartney and John Lennon could be considered musical geniuses in their own right, there is no doubt their collaboration had an impact on the Beatles’ historically significant music. McCartney was organized, a mediator, a diplomat. Lennon was agitated, chaotic, darker. Their opposing perspectives may have made their recording sessions tense, but they contributed to the highly innovative and successful nature of the Beatles’ music.

Lennon and McCartney famously integrated songs they had separately written in “A Day In The Life,” and bounced lyrics off of each other for “Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds.” “I offered cellophane flowers and newspaper taxis,” Paul said, “and John replied with kaleidoscope eyes … We traded words off each other, as we always did.” The Atlantic goes in-depth on the power of creative partnership, in the Beatles and beyond.

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