The whingers are saying, 'leave our memories of your greatness intact.' As if genuine memories of the Beatles could really be that vulnerable. Even if all your combined creativity could muster next month was a version of 'Barnacle Bill the Sailor' played on a kazoo and two recorders, it wouldn't alter one jot my feelings about the impact of 'She Loves You'.
I can understand why it's taken you so long to consider a comeback. Take you, Paul: for 23 years now, you have had to live with people saying that nothing you've released since can compete with what you managed as part of the Fab Four. Actually, I can think of two songs straight away: 'Maybe I'm Amazed' and 'Veronica', one of your recent collaborations with Elvis Costello. But how mean-spirited can people get? You give us the Beatles and then people moan because you can't give them to us again.
As for you, Ringo, you've been the butt of endless gags about how you couldn't drum. But no one could drum like you couldn't - the uncontainable swishing cymbals, the lumpy rolls. Come back and fail again. And George, here's your chance to step out of Lennon's shadow. Obviously, it's a shame that John can't make it. But McCartney and Lennon composed separately most of the time. So in some respects, it will be business as usual.
Let me offer you an incentive. Some years ago, I joined my friend Martin's band, the Cleaners from Venus. You probably remember us. We were big in Germany in 1988. Well, quite small actually. And for about two months. But the point is, we modelled ourselves on you. We sang through our noses to overcome the fact that we came from Essex, not from Liverpool. We used a Rickenbacker guitar to get that jangly sound. We stole all your harmony parts. And after a gig in Hamburg at a venue directly opposite the fabled Star Club (well, opposite where it used to be), we ran around on the Reeperbahn, making smutty jokes, just like you did. All things considered, we were the Beatles. But without the record sales. Or the songs. Or the talent.
It ended stickily for us, too. Not that either of us upset the other one by marrying an oriental performance artist. More straightforwardly, our record company dropped us. But let's not overlook the pressures of the business. You three have been there - you'll know what I'm talking about.
The point is, if there's a future for you, then clearly there's a future for us. So here's the deal: if you re-form, so will the Cleaners from Venus. We can't say fairer than that. There are some old scores to settle here. Let's get it on. To the toppermost of the poppermost, and no returns.
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