…And in the end: Legal document initiating The Beatles' official breakup to be auctioned this week

Written by on June 11, 2018

Courtesy of Christie’s

A legal document in which Paul McCartney sought to initiate the official breakup of The Beatles will go up for bid on Thursday, June 14, as part of a Christie’s auction in New York City.

In the historic affidavit, which dates from December 1970, McCartney details the various reasons why he wants to dissolve his partnership with John Lennon and the other members of the group.

The document, which is estimated to fetch between $100,000 and $150,000, also features handwritten comments by John Lennon reacting to his band mate’s complaints.

Among the reasons McCartney lists for launching his legal action are the fact that The Beatles had stopped performing live; his objection to the other band members’ decision to hire as a man he didn’t trust — Allen Klein — as their manager; and his assertion that staying in the group was hampering his creative freedom.

In the document, next to McCartney’s assertion that the band members were closer when they used to tour, Lennon wrote, “many fights on tour about leadership.” 

Next to a section in which McCartney complains that Lennon was no longer interested in performing on Beatles songs that “he had not written himself,” John charges that “Paul was guilty of this for years.”

Paul also maintains that he was upset that the band’s label, Apple, had sought to delay the release of his debut solo album, McCartney, which he viewed as a threat to his creative freedom. Lennon’s written response was that he “resented the high-handed way in which [Paul’s] record ‘suddenly’ appeared, and [how he demanded] release dates with no consideration whatever for other Apple Products.”

The Beatles’ breakup actually had been public knowledge since April 1970, when McCartney had announced he’d left the band.

Visit Christies.com for full details about the historic document.

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