For centuries, the myth of the lone genius has towered over us, its shadow obscuring the way creative work really gets done. The attempts to pick apart the Lennon-McCartney partnership reveal just how misleading that myth can be, because John and Paul were so obviously more creative as a pair than as individuals, even if at times they appeared to work in opposition to each other. The lone-genius myth prevents us from grappling with a series of paradoxes about creative pairs: that distance doesn’t impede intimacy, and is often a crucial ingredient of it; that competition and collaboration are often entwined.Of course years ago Slate had a long series on the same thing:
Though he lived another six years, John Lennon never took the stage for a major show again. His strange words have a peculiar and lasting echo. By then, Paul and John had been the most famous exes in the world for four years. But somehow, they were still "fiances"—prospective spouses. As much as had passed, the energy between them was always in front of them—always, somehow, in the future.