mccartney blames beatles breakup on lennon
Paul McCartney said in an Internet radio interview that the other three Beatles failed to talk Lennon out of breaking up the band. REUTERS/Gonzalo Fuentes

In a radio interview last week on Absolute Radio, an Internet radio station, Paul McCartney said he, George Harrison and Ringo Starr tried to talk John Lennon out of breaking up the Beatles, but Lennon was adamant.

Basically me, George [Harrison] and Ringo said, 'Does this have to be final? Could we do a couple of gigs or can we think about this tomorrow?', said McCartney. But John was off with Yoko and he was saying 'No, no, it's great--I feel a release,' and all that. So that was kind of final.

The Beatles broke up in 1970, playing their final concert on the rooftop of the headquarters of their record company, Apple, on Jan. 30, 1969. The reasons, mostly speculated by observers and partially affirmed by band members, included artistic differences, legal battles with those outside the group over money, Harrison's growing interest in songwriting within a band dominated by the songwriting duo of Lennon and McCartney, Lennon's intense relationship with wife Yoko Ono, and the burden of the Beatles' fame.

McCartney also said in the radio interview that he wishes the Queen of England would knight Ringo Starr, as he was knighted in 1997.

The 69-year-old musician is playing live dates around the world this year, including concerts on July 15 and 16 at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx.