Paul McCartney Reminisces About The Times He And John Lennon Platonically Jerked Off Together

"The lights were out, and somebody started masturbating, so we all did."

Paul McCartney

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With the release of new album Egypt Station, Paul McCartney has given a long, candid interview with GQ — and while it’s not filled with quite as much celebrity-directed dirt as a Quincy Jones or Kathleen Turner tell-all, McCartney’s fond reminiscing about masturbating in a room with John Lennon has certainly caught the internet’s attention.

The topic comes up as GQ writer Chris Heath asks McCartney for anecdotes on how The Beatles first bonded, beyond the oft-told stories.

McCartney offers up this: “[We were] over at John’s house, and it was just a group of us. And instead of just getting roaring drunk and partying—I don’t even know if we were staying over or anything—we were all just in these chairs, and the lights were out, and somebody started masturbating, so we all did.”

We being McCartney, Lennon and a few of Lennon’s friends. Given the lack of internet or material they had to work with, the men just shouted out names to conjure up imagery.

“We were just, ‘Brigitte Bardot!’ ‘Whoo!’, and then everyone would thrash a bit more,” he says. Lennon, however, couldn’t help but make a joke of it. “I think it was John sort of said, ‘Winston Churchill!'”

When pushed for clarification on whether the pair made the moment a habit, McCartney says he thinks it “was a one-off, or maybe it was like a two-off”, which indisputably means it happened more than one time. He downplays it, which is more than fair: if this wasn’t how 90 percent of The Beatles fan fiction started, it wouldn’t stand out as that weird.

“It wasn’t a big thing,” he says. “But, you know, it was just the kind of thing you didn’t think much of. It was just a group. Yeah, it’s quite raunchy when you think about it. There’s so many things like that from when you’re a kid that you look back on and you’re, ‘Did we do that?’ But it was good harmless fun. It didn’t hurt anyone. Not even Brigitte Bardot.”

Still, it’s shattered a lot of minds.

There are plenty more juicy details in the feature, including McCartney saying orgies weren’t really his thing, plus his response to Quincy Jones calling him the worst bass player he’s ever heard. It’s well worth a read.