In a new interview with Rolling Stone, Paul McCartney opens up about his final years with The Beatles and discusses how the band felt "threatened" in the presence of Yoko Ono, John Lennon's wife.
"We were kind of threatened [then]," McCartney said. "She was sitting on the amps while we were recording. Most bands couldn't handle that. We handled it, but not amazingly well, because we were so tight."
Ono has long faced the ire of Beatles fans, many of whom allege that she broke up the group.
"We weren't sexist," McCartney continued, "but girls didn't come to the studio — they tended to leave us to it."
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John Lennon and Yoko Ono
John Lennon and Yoko Ono
Carly Simon (pregnant) Yoko Ono James Taylor and John Lennon; circa 1960; New York. (Photo by Art Zelin/Getty Images)
Japanese-born artist and musician Yoko Ono lies in a bathtub with British singer and musician John Lennon (1940 - 1980), late 1960s. (Photo by Susan Wood/Getty Images)
View of the back cover of the record album 'Two Virgins,' by British musician John Lennon (1940 - 1980) and Japanese-born musician and artist Yoko Ono, 1968. The two are both completely naked, save for Lennon's glasses and necklace. (Photo by Blank Archives/Getty Images)
View of a censored version of the front cover of the record album 'Two Virgins,' by British musician John Lennon (1940 - 1980) and Japanese-born musician and artist Yoko Ono, 1968. A plain brown sleeve covers the original art which features the two musicians both completely naked, save for Lennon's glasses and necklace; a pair of cut-outs reveal the album title and the musician's heads. (Photo by Blank Archives/Getty Images)
Beatle John Lennon (1940 - 1980) and his girlfriend Yoko Ono outside the Robert Fraser Gallery, where Lennon's work is on show at the gallery in an exhibition entitled 'You Are Here', London, July 1968. Lennon is about to release 365 helium-filled balloons to mark the occasion. (Photo by Keystone Features/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
Close-up portrait of Japanese-born artist and musician Yoko Ono and British musican and artist John Lennon (1940 - 1980), December 1968. (Photo by Susan Wood/Getty Images)
Japanese-born artist and musician Yoko Ono and British musican and artist John Lennon (1940 - 1980), December 1968. (Photo by Susan Wood/Getty Images)
Yoko Ono and John Lennon at a press conference in 1968 in Montreux, Switzerland. (Photo by Gunter Zint/K & K Ulf Kruger OHG/Redferns)
UNSPECIFIED - APRIL 01: John Lennon And Yoko Ono In A Bagism Way On April 1969 (Photo by Keystone-France/Gamma-Keystone via Getty Images)
John Lennon (1940 - 1980) and Yoko Ono pose on the steps of the Apple building in London, holding one of the posters that they distributed to the world's major cities as part of a peace campaign protesting against the Vietnam War, December 1969. The poster reads 'War Is Over, If You Want It'. (Photo by Frank Barratt/Keystone/Getty Images)
John Lennon (1940 - 1980) and Yoko Ono at home in Ascot, England, circa 1971. (Photo by Michael Putland/Getty Images)
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Today, McCartney's relationship with Ono is on solid ground — "It's like we're mates," he said — but back in the late '60s, he had to learn to accept her.
"My big awakening was, if John loves this woman, that's gotta be right," McCartney said. "I realized any resistance was something I had to overcome. It was a little hard at first. Gradually, we did."
"I think she attracted John so much to another way of life that he then went on to, very successfully, add a sort of second part to his career, writing things like 'Imagine' and 'Give Peace a Chance,'" McCartney told the outlet in 2012. "I don't think he would have done that without Yoko."
The Beatles' most iconic moments:
The Beatles Most Iconic Moments
The Beatles Most Iconic Moments
The Beatles perform in Liverpool's Cavern Club, with Pete Best on drums, 1962. Best was fired from the group that same year, and replaced with Ringo Starr. (Photo by Mark and Colleen Hayward/Getty Images)
1963: Rock and roll band 'The Beatles' pose for a portrait in 1963. (Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)
NEW YORK - FEBRUARY 7: The Beatles arrive at John F. Kennedy International Airport, February 7, 1964. At top is Ringo Starr, middle row is John Lennon and Paul McCartney, lower level is George Harrison and unidentified flight attendant. (Photo by CBS via Getty Images)
NEW YORK - FEBRUARY 9: The Beatles prepare for their first appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show in New York, February 9, 1964. From left to right, Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr (in background, on drums), George Harrison, John Lennon. (Photo by CBS via Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - AUGUST 16: The Beatles at Shea Stadium. Our Mets have displayed their antic behavior before some good crowds at Shea Stadium but last night's turnaway mob of shrieking teeners tested the solidity of the ballpark as they flocked to see Britain's moptop quartet in concert. Scores were injured in the crush or overcome by the humid heat but luckily no one required hospitalization. (Photo by Dan Farrell/NY Daily News Archive via Getty Images)
UNITED KINGDOM - SEPTEMBER 12: PLYMOUTH HOE Photo of MAGICAL MYSTERY TOUR and BEATLES, L-R: John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison, Ringo Starr - posed, group shot - during Magical Mystery Tour. (Photo by David Redfern/Redferns)
24th June 1967: British pop group The Beatles holding banners proclaiming 'All You Need Is Love' in four languages, in preparation for a global television performance of their song of the same name. (Photo by Doug McKenzie/Getty Images)
UNITED KINGDOM - JANUARY 01: Paul MAC CARTNEY, George HARRISON, Ringo STARR and in front John LENNON interpreting the song I'M THE WALRUS disguised as animals, in a scene from the film MAGICAL MYSTERY TOUR. (Photo by Keystone-France/Gamma-Keystone via Getty Images)
British musican and artist John Lennon (1940 - 1980) holds Japanese-born artist and musician Yoko Ono in his arms, December 1968. (Photo by Susan Wood/Getty Images)
The four members of the British group the BEATLES posing together on August 2, 1967. At that time they stopped their concerts, wore the moustache and announced their separation despite their last album to come, ABBEY ROAD in 1970. (Photo by Keystone-France/Gamma-Keystone via Getty Images)
Photo of BEATLES; George Harrison, Ringo Starr, John lennon & Paul McCartney with actress Jane Asher, Maureen Starkey and Pattie Boyd at a party to celebrate the musician's 25th birthday at Rishikesh, India, 25th February 1968. (Photo by Cummings Archives/Redferns)
Staff Photo by Jill Brady, Wednesday, August 9, 2006: Beatles Abbey Road record album. (Photo by Jill Brady/Portland Press Herald via Getty Images)