Sir Paul McCartney thinks university courses on The Beatles are “ridiculous”.
The 72-year-old rock star and his bandmates John Lennon, George Harrison and Ringo Starr made history in the 1960s with the release of their music.
An MA in Popular Music student asked Paul what his thoughts were on people studying The Beatles in school and the musician provided a shocked response.
“For me it’s ridiculous, and yet very flattering. Ridiculous because we never studied anything, we just loved our popular music: Elvis, Chuck Berry, Little Richard, Fats Domino, etc.,” Paul explained on his website in a blog post entitled, Impossible Fans Q&A - Extra Questions #3. “And it wasn’t a case of ‘studying’ it. I think for us, we’d have felt it would have ruined it to study it. We wanted to make our own minds up just by listening to it. So our study was listening. But to be told - as I was years ago now - that The Beatles were in my kid’s history books? That was like ‘What?! Unbelievable, man!’ Can you imagine when we were at school, finding yourself in a history book?!”
Paul isn’t convinced great musicians can be crafted in an academic setting.
The Rock and Roll Hall of Famer thinks amazing songwriters come about organically.
“At the same time, I don’t think that by studying popular music you can become a great popular musician; it may be that you use it to teach other people about the history, that’s all valuable,” he noted. “But to think that you can go to a college and come out like Bob Dylan? Someone like Bob Dylan, you can’t make.”