Paul McCartney has long claimed he played a lead role in writing hit Beatles song ‘In My Life’, despite it being attributed to his former bandmate John Lennon on the 1965 album Rubber Soul.
However, new research from Harvard University appears to have solved the mystery once and for all.
According to The Telegraph, the US and Canadian research group claim McCartney has “misremembered” writing the song, as it actually has clear signs of Lennon’s handiwork throughout.
Senior lecturer in statistics, Mark Glickman, and Dalhousie University’s maths professor Jason Brown created a computer model to break down each of the musicians’ individual songs into 149 components, all to determine clear signs of each of their individual work styles.
The researchers reportedly found there was a less than one in 50 chance McCartney wrote ‘In My Life.’
“The basic idea is to convert a song into a set of different data structures that are amenable for establishing a signature of a song using a quantitative approach,” Dr Glickman explained to the publication.
“The probability that ‘In My Life’ was written by McCartney is .018. Which basically means it’s pretty convincingly a Lennon song. McCartney misremembers.”
It was previously claimed Lennon wrote the lyrics for the song about his own childhood, before broadening it to cover his entire youth. Meanwhile, McCartney always claimed he set those words himself to music, having been inspired by Smokey Robinson & The Miracles.
The news outlet claims Lennon always disputed that, and said right up until his death that only the ‘middle-eight’ and harmonies were McCartney’s work.
During their research, the pair found a major distinction between the two musicians’ styles – and claimed while McCartney’s were more complex and varied a lot, Lennon’s remained similar.
Looking at other songs disputed by the pair however, the researchers then claimed ‘The Word’ – previously attributed to Lennon as well – was actually McCartney’s work.