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Francie Schwartz: The About.com Interview

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<B>Any "rows", as they say?</B>

No real rows the nights I went to sessions. But. Everybody has a big But... I think the night they laid down the rhythm track for 'Helter Skelter' I had been uninvited so I stayed home and went to bed some time after midnight. Paul got into bed crazy. Drunk. Upset - or more upset than usual. By midsummer, it must have gotten bad for Paul as far as the Others talking back to him when he took charge. But who was Paul to take charge? J&Y never would have moved in with us except the Apple Accountant wouldn't give John Lennon money to pay off Yoko's debt (not huge). So obviously John couldn't just buy a house for them to live in. I do remember John saying "Whose f***in company is this anyway?" during one of our JY&F evenings.

I loved hanging out with them, they liked me and my book. They once invited my sister over to their first home in NYC, when they met her outside a Greenwich Village bookstore (I got a full page rave in the Village Voice) with nothing but "Body Count" in the window. More recently that store burned to the ground. My sister called me in California to deliver J&Y's message of '72: Tell Francie we love her book.

<B>What was life like with Paul? Was he as domestic as legend has it?</B>

He was undomesticated. Life with him was complicated in the extreme: his world was coming apart, and he needed someone to give him an anchor, not an easy job. Of course it was tons of fun as well...

<B>How distraught did he seem about the dissolution of everything? Was he still hopeful, or was he already making plans for a non-Beatle life?</B>

Paul was the most distraught of the Four, about Life After. In My Not So Humble Opinion, he still had hope for the group. I'll repeat just one quote from "Body Count" (When I asked John why Paul didn't do a solo album, maybe that would solve the problems in the studio): "We thought of it a long time ago. We were gonna call it "Paul McCartney Goes Too Far," - "but he won't do it. He's too hung up about us bein' Beatles y'know."

<B>Upon meeting John and Yoko, what struck you about them? Did you find them as you'd expected?</B>

What struck me was their radiance, separately and together. Before I walked into that studio (the 2nd White Album session) I'd known nothing about Yoko, and didn't have any expectations.

<B>What, if anything, were you shocked to discover upon meeting any of the Beatles?</B>

I was shocked only for the first few seconds, to walk through double doors to see the Four, Paul at the grand piano, the other three standing around or behind it. They immediately became people to me once I'd been introduced by Paul as "Franny". Within a few hours, I was dancing during takes, and singing backing, "Ba-oom shooby-doo-wah", [on "Revolution 1"] my face about six inches away from George Harrison on the other side of the mike. Great night, that first one.

<B>What was it like when John and Yoko briefly stayed with Paul?</B>

Wonderful for me, not so hot for Paul. They shared the house for more than three weeks. John and Yoko and I had several quiet evenings together watching TV and talking about "things." Not long before J&Y moved on, the incident took place which I consider to be the moment of emotional disconnection between John and Paul. In my heart I believe that was It for the Lennon-McCartney partnership. I'm not trying to be mysterious. The short version is in my book, "Body Count."

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