UPDATE: James McCartney weighed in on his statements today through his Facebook page. Although he doesn’t rule out the idea of playing with other Beatles’ sons, McCartney emphasized prior commitments with his own album and tour:
“Hi Everyone…well, looks like quite some attention being given to my BBC interview! Honestly, I was just thinking out loud about playing with Beatles family friends, nothing more. My band’s going to be on tour in the UK and US for most of this year, and the shows are going great! I’m so grateful…Lots of love to you all…!”
The Internet was collectively taken aback today when James McCartney (Sir Paul and Linda McCartney’s only son) told the BBC that he would be willing to jam with the other Beatles’ sons in a “Next Generation”-type group.
When prompted about the possibility of reuniting, the younger McCartney told the BBC’s entertainment reporter, Ian Youngs, “I don’t think it’s something that Zak [Starkey] wants to do. Maybe Jason [Starkey] would want to do it. I’d be up for it. Sean [Lennon] seemed to be into it, Dhani [Harrison] seemed to be into it. I’d be happy to do it.”
The rest of the conversation went as follows:
Q. Has it been mooted?
Yeah, a little bit.
Q. Do you think it could happen?
Yeah, hopefully, naturally. I don’t know, you’d have to wait and see. The will of God, nature’s support, I guess. So yeah, maybe.
Naturally, rumors began to abound as soon as news hit this side of the digital pond. And with the Fab Four’s influence still so prominent and revered even more than 40 years after band’s breakup, we at Paste decided to check out the actual viability of this collaboration happening in terms of professional (not personal) possibilities.
All of the Beatles’ sons in conversation for this gig have some sort of musical experience or career. McCartney has performed on his father’s records (namely, 1997’s Flaming Pie and 2001’s Driving Rain) and released a combined collection of his own works, The Complete EP Collection in 2011.
Zak Starkey—a drummer like his father, Ringo Starr—has been performing with The Who since 1996. Starkey has also recorded and toured with other big-name acts such as Johnny Marr’s project called Johnny Marr and the Healers, Oasis and Paul Weller. Less is known about Starr’s other son, Jason, but the NME noted that he, too, is a drummer who has played in a number of lesser-known bands.
Sean Lennon, the younger of John Lennon’s two sons (and only child with Yoko Ono), has probably spent the most time in the spotlight. He began his solo career in 1998 with the debut album, Into the Sun. In addition to his three solo albums and credits with Albert Hammond Jr., Cibo Matto, The Ghost of a Saber Tooth Tiger and his mother’s projects, Lennon has also sustained a relatively substantial career in the film industry. Most recently, Lennon was linked with Rufus Wainwright’s forthcoming album, Out of the Game.
Lastly, Dhani Harrison (who looks eerily similar to his father, George) debuted as a professional musician in 2002 when he completed the late Harrison’s final album, Brainwashed. The younger guitarist has received attention for his band thenewno2 and positive press for the 2010 collaborative project and album, both named Fistful of Mercy, with Ben Harper and Joseph Arthur.
So while each of the Beatles’ offspring have their own projects going on now, a reunion doesn’t seem totally impossible in terms of timeliness and outside creative commitments. As James McCartney told the BBC, though, we’ll just have to wait and see.