Some fans of The Beatles are angry to this day with Yoko Ono for her possible role in the band's breakup.
But Paul McCartney himself, whose feud with John Lennon's widow has played out in the public eye for decades now, is burying the hatchet. In an interview published in Rolling Stone's November issue, the 71-year-old musician calls Ono "a badass" and explains why he's moved on.
"I thought, 'If John loved her, there's got to be something. He's not stupid,'" McCartney says. "It's like, what are you going to do? Are you going to hold a grudge you never really had?"
McCartney reasons that if fellow Beatle George Harrison were still alive, he'd encourage him to put the past in the past: "George would say to me, 'You don't want stuff like that hanging around in your life.'"
There is one person he won't forgive: Mark David Chapman , the man who shot Lennon dead in 1980. "I think I could pretty much forgive anyone else," McCartney says. "But I don't see why I'd want to forgive him. This is a guy who did something so crazy and terminal. Why should I bless him with forgiveness?"
But one completely legit grudge won't stop McCartney from making more music. On Oct. 15, he released New, his 24th solo album. And after all his successes, he still keeps his ego in check. "I've always got the critic in my mind," McCartney says. "He keeps me on my toes--'Don't get too blas about it.' I don't want to become too smug, to think I'm great."
For McCartney's full interview, pick up the November issue of Rolling Stone when it hits stands Friday, Oct. 25.
Photo: Peggy Sirota for Rolling Stone