The Beatles: Prince criticized John Lennon’s “demonic” song, “Never Happen to Me.”
THE BEATLES were chastised by Prince for using John Lennon’s voice on a song 15 years after his death, claiming it was a “demonic” composition.
Paul McCartney, George Harrison, and Ringo Starr, the three remaining members of The Beatles, joined together in 1994 to record Anthology 1, a retrospective album. Rarities, outtakes, and live performances from the band’s early years were featured on the album. Despite the fact that the Fab Four couldn’t write a new song without John Lennon, who had been dead for 14 years following his killing in 1980, they persisted. The band started working on a long-lost song called Free as a Bird, in which the star’s voice were incorporated.
Yoko Ono, John Lennon’s widow, sent The Beatles the demo cassette for the original song.
They used it to combine the star’s voice, sing along with him, and create a completely new song.
Prince criticized the band in the press for making this decision.
“What they did with that Beatles song [Free As a Bird], distorting John Lennon’s voice to have him singing from across the grave… it will never happen to me,” he remarked in an interview. (Image courtesy of Guitar World)
“Another reason I want artistic control is to avoid that kind of thing from happening,” Prince stated.
“That is the most devilish thing imaginable,” he continued. Everything is in its rightful place. We would have been the same age if I was destined to jam with Duke Ellington.”
“That entire virtual reality stuff… it’s truly demonic,” the Purple One added. I’m also not a demon.”
Later, McCartney justified the band’s decision to use Lennon’s mixtape and voice.
“I’d never heard [the demos]before, but [Ono] explained that they’re well-known among Lennon aficionados as bootlegs,” McCartney stated.
“I told Yoko, ‘Don’t put too many conditions on us; it’s spiritually difficult to do this.’ We don’t know; after two hours in the studio, we might despise each other and leave. So don’t add any conditions; it’s already difficult enough. You have the right to veto it if it doesn’t work out.’
“When I told George and Ringo that I’d agreed to it, they said, ‘What?’ What if we fall in love with it?’ Fortunately, it didn’t come to that.”
Starr also had something to say. “Brinkwire News in Condensed Form.”