Jethro Tull’s Ian Anderson claimed The Beatles, including Paul McCartney, played shows ‘fueled by pills and booze’ in a new Classic Rock interview.
“That brashness clearly manifested itself in the music they were playing. Fuelled by booze, and pills to keep them awake during sets that went on well into the early hours, they cut their teeth delivering approximations of Gene Vincent and Eddie Cochran, the moody bad boys whose records they would have bought a few short years earlier.
“Let’s not forget, however, that it wasn’t just Lennon leading the charge here; Hamburg is where McCartney honed the Little Richard howl he would continue to pull out of a drawer every so often throughout the band’s career.
“The part Stuart Sutcliffe played in those fledgling days is a matter for debate, as while his creative contribution to the band’s music was minimal, his presence was helpful to the others.
“John, in particular, was close to Stuart, and having him around may well have given him more confidence to find himself, for his own character to evolve.
“In terms of influencing others, the perception of The Beatles as bad boys in Hamburg is a bit of a misnomer – Lennon was probably the only one who’d be handy in a fight.