beatles fans
Paul McCartney

The Greatest Hoax in Rock and Roll History - Part 3

By Kathy Wheeler

The White Album

This double album has still more evidence that Paul is dead. The picture on the inside shows Paul close up with a rather prominent scar on his lip. John signals that he knows what’s up in the song Glass Onion. “Here’s another clue for you all. The walrus was Paul.” He had to have had something to do with it and he is letting us know by referring back to songs with clues. He’s even said he wrote Glass Onion for people who read things into his songs such as saying Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds means LSD. Paul said in a 1997 interview that he and John had switched costumes for the cover photograph of Magical Mystery Tour and that is why he said the walrus was Paul in Glass Onion.

In While My Guitar Gently Weeps George is mourning Paul and you hear him moan “Paul, Paul, Paul.”  The fabulous little song Why Don’t We Do It In the Road could be interpreted as a car reference. Don’t Pass Me By says, “You were in a car crash and you lost your hair” a gentler way to describe the severe head injury. There is also the little piece between I’m So Tired and Blackbird that says, “Paul is dead man miss him miss him.”

Revolution #9 is John once again messing with people trying to find secret meanings in his songs. Here he both dazzles them with brilliance and baffles them with bullshit. Paul is the only Beatle with nine letters in his last name so the song is about him. When you play it backwards the words number nine sound like “turn me on dead man.” I have actually heard this for myself. Here are some words taken from Revolution #9...

“His voice was low and his eye was high and his eyes were closed...
my fingers are broken and so is my hair, I’m not in the mood for
wearing clothing...maybe even dead.”

There is even the sound of a car crash in the song.

The poster, which was included with the white album, holds some clues also. There is a picture of William Campbell wearing glasses and having slicked back hair, a picture of Paul looking like a head floating in a bathtub and an eerie picture of him with what looks to be a skeleton arm reaching for him.

Abbey Road

The Paul is Dead hysteria happened when Abbey Road was released. People were buying the album like crazy as well as the three previous albums that were full of clues. Whoever was responsible was a marketing genius because it made tons of money.

Like Sgt. Pepper, Abbey Road’s cover is a clue. John is either a preacher or an angel in white. Ringo is a pall (Paul) bearer or an undertaker. George is said to be the gravedigger, and Paul is the corpse. He is barefoot, has his eyes closed, is out of step with the others and is holding a cigarette in his right hand. Everyone knows that Paul is left-handed, but I have seen several pictures dating back to the early days that show him smoking with his right hand—not an amazing feat. There is a Volkswagen Beetle in the picture with a license plate that reads “LMW 281F” for Linda McCartney weeps and that Paul would be 28 if he were alive. Paul claims that he came in a suit and sandals and kicked off the sandals. There are pictures of him wearing
the black sandals in other shots from the Abbey Road photo shoot. They are the same black sandals he wore when the Beatles visited the Marharishi.

The back cover also contains clues. The word Beatles has a crack through it. Next to it you see a skull. A girl in a blue dress is walking by.
This refers back to Lovely Rita because meter maids wore blue uniforms. If you connect the dots on the wall next to the word Beatles it will read “3 Beatles”.

In Come Together there is a big clue. Flattop with juju eyeballs refers to Paul, known for his eyes. His top is flat because he has no head. John also sings, “one and one and one is three, got to be good-looking ‘cause he’s so hard to see.” There are only three Beatles now because the “cute one” is gone. This line was seen as a major clue.

Let It Be shows Paul against a blood red background. On Paul’s solo album, McCartney, the cover pictures an empty bowl of cherries. We all know the old saying, “life is a bowl of cherries.” The final clue is that Paul no longer possesses life. It has also been said that the real Paul McCartney would never have married Linda, especially after being engaged to the beautiful young Jane Asher. They say that Linda was William Campbell’s girlfriend so Jane got dumped.


Well there you have it. This list of clues is by no means complete. I was also inventing my own clues here and there, just for fun. Paul is not really dead. It was just a great practical joke, a very successful marketing gimmick and a bit of a mystery even to this day. No one has ever proved that the Beatles or anyone close to them has ever had anything to do with it. My suspicion that John had something to do with it is pure speculation based on clues and his creative mind. He’s been known to crazy stuff like backwards messages and that type of thing. It was a harmless prank and the fact that millions of records sold because of it is an added bonus. The Beatles made great music. There are still those who believe Paul is actually dead, citing things such as no fingerprints have been released, and the professor’s voice studies. We all interpret things in our own way based upon our individual experiences, beliefs and biases. Unfortunately, there are some people who will believe anything you tell them, see only what they want to see, and hear only what they want to hear.

Note from the Author: This article was originally penned around 2000 for my Rock and Roll History Class. In 2004 an article appeared in Goldmine by Beatle Author Bruce Spizer. Paul fessed up. Read all about it - here at (note the publication date on the article, April 1st - Bruce told me that it was an April Fools gag, but he fooled me good and gave permission to run the article on


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