No Tours, No Jealousy as Beatles Record

The following article appeared in New Musical Express on December 31, 1966, page 3.

"One reason we don't want to tour any more is that when we're on stage nobody can hear us or listen to us," Paul McCartney told me.
He was referring to the screamers who drown out all hope of hearing The Beatles in person-writes Andy Gray.
"Another reason is that our stage act hasn't improved one bit since we started touring four years ago. The days when three guitarists and a drummer can stand up and sing and do nothing else must be over.
"Many of our tracks nowadays have big backings. We couldn't produce the sound on stage without an orchestra. And if ew were to do ourselves justice now, we'd have to have at least three months to produce a brand new act. And it would probably be very unlike what you'd expect from The Beatles," went on Paul.
This was Paul's answer to my query about their future touring. Of their forthcoming recordings, he said: "We feel that only through recording do people listen to us, so that is our most important form of communication. We have never thought of ourselves as one sound...Merseybeat wasn't our invention. We have always changed our style as we went along and we've never been frightened to develop and change.
"I think this has been the reason for our continued success. We could have stopped thinking up new things and brought out 'The Son of Please Please Me' or 'The Son of Love Me Do', but that was not on.
"We work on one song and record it and then get tired of it. So we think up something very different. The strengh of any act is doing something that you wouldn't associate with them.
"So we keep on doing tracks which can be any style at all. We're not limited that way, or with time any more. We take as more time as we want on a track, until we get it to our satisfaction. Before, we had a set time in the recording studio, and that was that. If it wasn't exactly as we wanted that was too bad.
"Now we take time because we haven't any pressing engagements like tours to limit us. All we want is to make one track better than the last."
Paul went on to give me an insight into their formula for writing hits.
"The words are written down, but the music is never, because we can't read music. We play it to each other and soon pick it up, and fool around with it a bit. George suggests something extra, then John adds a new idea and so on until we have the music the way we want it. Then we record. Then we forget about it and get on wtih the next track."
On the subject of jealousy within the group, Paul was most emphatic. "There isn't any. Jealousy doesn't exist. When John wanted to do a film on his own, we were all happy for him. Now that he's done it, he has passed on to us information about all sorts of things he has learned. That way as Beatles we become richer in experience. George went to India and told us what he had learned. I wrote film music and found out other things, which I've passed on.
"This rumour we were splitting up was rubbish, too. We're all great friends and we don't want to split up. There's never been any talk or sign of it...except in the minds of others."
Paul also let off steam about those who think they have gone "big time". "In ourselves we don't feel big time at all. It's only when people keep telling us we are big time that we even think of it."
But Paul admitted that they had changed over the years. "We had to. If you've got the money you don't buy a 3 pound camera if you would rather have a 50 pound one. Our whole outlook on life is changing because our circumstances have changed our surroundings. But this haven't done anything to disunite The Beatles. We are going to keep on making better tracks and become better entertainers-as The Beatles."

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