Note: This post has been updated and replaced by “Sir Faul Revisited.” I left this one in place due to the long string of excellent comments.
In the fall of 1969 radio disc jockey Russell Gibb, WKNR-FM in Detroit, received a phone call from “Tom,” who told him that Paul McCartney had died and had been replaced in 1966 by a lookalike. Thus began a cottage industry that continues to this day, now called “PID”, or Paul is Dead. It is continually churned, new clues added now and then, as with the JFK assassination. Most recently we had a “last testament” from George Harrison, post-death and unverifiable, of course.
PID, like the Beatles, is a psy-op*. I know this because it avoids the obvious answer. Paul McCartney indeed disappeared and was replaced by a lookalike, and I know who the replacement is. It was not hard to discover. If I could do it, so too could all of the sleuths who make those PID YouTubes and run those PID web pages. But that’s not in the job description. The purpose of the PID psy-op is to prevent people from learning easily discoverable truth. It is misdirection.
The phone call to WKNR and subsequent publicity was obviously a staged event. The troubling question why? Had the managers of the Beatles not done the whole business with album and song clues, the whole switch would have gone down seamlessly. It was done so well that we would never have known to question it. Why did they clue us in?
To understand the switch, it is important to know that there was not one McCartney, but two, a set of fraternal twins, Paul and Mike, born in June of 1942. In the switch, Paul indeed disappeared, and Mike took his place. But another switch was necessary – somebody had to become Mike McCartney, since Mike was now playing Paul. That job was handed to a complete stranger, a man who used the stage name “Mike McGear” and claims to this day to be Mike McCartney, Paul’s younger brother. He is not. I do not know his real name. As you can see from the photo at the left, from the late 60s or early 70s) he bears no resemblance to a McCartney.
The switch was necessary since so many people at Liverpool Institute, where both attended, would know of the McCartney twins. But just as we lose track of our classmates over time, so too would most of Paul and Mike’s. So the invention of Mike McGear was enough to take care of most who knew them only casually. For the few who might have been close friends and suspected something was up, they were probably persuaded to keep quiet. Remember, the Beatles were not four boys and couple of managers, but a large intelligence operation. The McCartney’s were recruited because they were both musically gifted and because they were twins. They were ideal.
So the switch did not happen in 1966, as the PID crowd asserts. It happened long before. We will see how the two were slipping in and out even as early as 1963.
The Beatles had reached the end of their natural shelf life around 1966. They had stopped performing in public, but then in a period of five years released a series of albums that changed the face of rock and roll – Rubber Soul (1965), Revolver (1966), Sgt. Pepper (1967), White Album (1968) and Abbey Road (1969). We would learn in ’69 that the albums were littered with clues hinting at the death of Paul. Hundreds of thousands of kids rushed to buy them to examine the clues and, if somehow able, play the songs backward. (I never could pull that off.) We love a mystery, and they provided it.
In looking at the album covers, I discovered that after Rubber Soul, for every album forward we were looking at Mike, and not Paul McCartney in the photos. So, the official switch happened after they quit performing in public. Prior to that time, they took turns playing Paul for various gigs.
The images are not sharply defined. In it there appear to be two Paul McCartney’s, one left, leaning against the rail, and one in the center squatted down. Note the hair on the one on the right, Mike. It will come in to play.
Another writer did some work on Elvis Presley, and in it suggested that Elvis was a set of identical twins. Given that information, he suggested that the whole Paul si Dead affair might well be a case of hidden twins. He suggested someone take a look at it.
I ran with that suggestion. I didn’t think much would come of it, and was so surprised to find how easy it was to solve this riddle. The PID people had been at this for years, and couldn’t find something this obvious? I thought that if Paul McCartney had a twin brother, it would be a deeply buried secret. This is how I came to understand that the purpose of the “Paul is Dead” project is to protect Mike McCartney from discovery. Those people have analyzed every detail of every album and song and photograph and missed the most obvious evidence. How can that be other than deliberate?
It was not buried at all. Paul’s replacement was right in front of our eyes, and is seen in the boat photo above squatting down.The name, again, is Mike McCartney.
Now, recognition: Here’s a photo of the McCartney boys, Paul born on 6/18/42, and Michael, we are told, on 1/7/44, or eighteen months later. Paul is on the left.
As I studied this photo, I realized that these are indeed brothers, as the eyes, nose, mouth and ears are a match. Paul on the left looks about three years old, which would make Mike about 18 months old. But wait! At eighteen months, Mike should exhibit more babyish qualities, in fact, should still have his baby cheeks and be smaller in size. But these two kids look the same age.
I realized that I was looking at twins – fraternal, most likely, but twins. I found other photos:
That’s a lovely family shot of Mary and James and the boys, but again, I am not seeing eighteen months age difference between Paul (left) and Mike (right). I originally thought that it was Paul on the right, but looking at later photos, I discovered one key to telling them apart – Mike has a natural cowlick – an unruly section of hair that goes against the grain of the rest. The natural part in Mike’s hair on the right side tells us who is who in this photo. It will appear in later photographs well into the career of replacement Paul, or Faul. Real Paul, on the other hand, had a full and rich head of hair that had no impediments. The photo above appears to be age four. (Note that Mary has dressed them in identical shoes, socks and shorts, and shirts of the same maker. It was common practice in those days to dress twins alike.)
These are two boys of approximately the same age, and Mike on left is a little pudgy in the face. The cowlick is apparent again. Paul has lost a front tooth, so he must be about six. They are dressed alike.
But I did find a photo of the two where there is a definite age difference. This photo is said to be of Paul and his younger brother Mike.
That might be Paul, but it is hard to say. Anyway, there is a slight problem here – the one on the left is not Mike. And, it’s a girl. The dress is a clue. She appears to be wearing strap-on shoes, girlish in style. Even in the late 1940’s they did not dress boys like girls.
Photographs of the Mike dry up after this time. He will disappear from public view, appearing only as Paul on occasion. His name will reappear around 1962, and he will assume the stage name of “Mike McGear” to avoid riding on Paul’s coattails. But it will be a different person, a fake. Real Mike attended Liverpool Institute, the same school as Paul, George Harrison, and Neil Aspinall, Beatles road manager. I’ve been unable to locate photos of graduating classes. Paul and Mike might have graduated the same year, though the course of study can be short or long. Officially, Paul graduated in ’60 and Mike in ’62.
From this point on I will refer to Mike’s replacement as “McGear,” and use either “Mike” or “Faul” for the guy who later became, in public, the guy we call Paul McCartney.
McGear’s musical career lasted into the 1980s as part of two groups, the Scaffolds, and Grimm. Each had modest success, but nothing paralleling his fake brother. He also spent time as a hairdresser and photographer. Brian Epstein referred to him as “Flash Harry” because he was always taking pictures of the band using a flash gun during the early sixties. McGear would spend time collaborating with Wings in the early 70s, so that we have fake Mike playing alongside fake Paul. Awkward.
McGear apparently got married without the presence of fake Paul, who had to be pasted into photos. Below is supposedly McGear’s wedding day in 1968, also attended by “Paul” and his girlfriend, Jane Asher.
The composition of this photo makes it appear that he’s an awkward man, even gawking at Angela’s chest. It’s as if he was not there, or was superimposed later. Also notice that “Paul” has that cowlick. It will always give him away. The photo is an obvious paste-up job, and we are looking at McGear and Mike. Paul is not in it.But then again, neither is Mike, for real. He had to be pasted in by photo sleuths. (Confused? Just remember that Mike McGear is fake, and Paul McCartney is gone. We are left with McGear, playing fake Mike, and Mike, playing fake Paul.)
Here’s another of that day:
It was an odd day, that is, Mike and Angela are not front and center at their own wedding. They don’t seem to be important players. Notice again … the cowlick on Paul. I am guessing that Jane, “Paul” (Mike) and the man next to them were pasted into this photo. They are looking one direction while everyone else is looking at the camera. Another fake.
Anyway, we can forget Mike McGear. He’s a fake, used to misdirect us. Since he was the less famous brother, few have questioned the fact that he doesn’t remotely resemble Paul. Perhaps some sleuth can investigate public records find someone who fake-died in a car crash and lost his hair or disappeared overseas in the early 60s – McGear left an old life behind to become this guy.
It helps to look at the original Paul McCartney – here is a photo from around 1963:
The dreamy eyes are a McCartney trademark. The full head of hair with no cowlick apparent is Paul.
His lips are thicker than Mike’s, and his upper lip is a pronounced Cupid’s Bow, more apparent in the top photo. The nose is less pointed. This is the man, the heart-throb, who had to leave our minds to be replaced by this man:
Ladies and gentlemen: Introducing Faul McCartney, or Mike, Paul’s twin brother. Notice he has thinner lips, a sharper nose, and again, that cowlick.
So when did the switch happen? Since we know two (actually, three counting Mike) of the Beatles were recruited out of Liverpool Institute, we know those who formed the group knew about the McCartney twins. So I wondered if Faul had been around prior to the album clues.
I found a photo of the group in Sweden in October of 1963 –
That’s Mike, not Paul. The resemblance is strong, but the hair and sharper nose give it away. They might have felt safe in using Faul in Sweden, since the boys were not as recognizable there, and were perhaps testing the waters to see if they could pull it off.
I spent part of yesterday watching the two Beatles movies, A Hard Day’s Night (1964), and Help! (1965). The first is still fun, as the boys seem well-rehearsed and natural and the script takes no one too seriously. They exude a natural charm. Here’s a publicity shot for the movie, and it it obviously the real Paul. [Later note: Fooled again. This photo bugged me because of the lines under the eyes. It is Mike. What did Charlie Brown say? “Aaaahgh! ” Bart Simpson? “Aye, Carumba!”] In fact, it is real Paul throughout that movie HDN, so I regard it as a testimony to his talent and charm. He was very good in it.
Help! is another story. The opening scene is of the four playing the title song in black and white with darts being thrown at the screen, part of the stupid plot. That opening scene is real Paul.
Thereafter, it appears mostly to be Mike in the movie, and often enough he has his back to the camera, or left side. So it could be that the filmed version of the song Help! was Paul’s last public appearance.
Here is a shot from the scene in the Austrian Alps, taken off my TV screen:
And another from the scene in the field surrounded by tanks: These are both Mike, not Paul. Both have the cowlick, sharper nose, thinner lips. So Mike was around, and as time went on must have felt more confident slipping in and out as he groomed and trained for the part of fake Paul.
The switch was in the works long before 1966. It had been there from the beginning.
One last look, just for nostalgia’s sake: Here’s Abbey Road:
It is easy to see now that we are dealing with Mike, and not Paul. He’s got the cowlick. It haunts him. It may be the reason why modern-day Faul so often wears a hair piece. (And just when did his hair turn auburn?)
There was another person in this saga that I want to mention before moving on, Paul’s girlfriend, Jane Asher. She appears to be an actor in this play. She supposedly met Paul when she was allowed to interview the Beatles at Royal Albert Hall in 1963 at age 17. Imagine that!
Paul and Jane had a public romance, and he almost immediately moved in with the Asher family on Wimpole Street, and exclusive area in central London. This even as she was barely of legal age. We are told that it was there that John Lennon and Paul wrote some of their early and best collaborations. Her mom and Dad, Margaret and Richard Allen John, a doctor and music professor, were very accommodating. Peter Asher, of Peter and Gordon fame and later a music producer, also lived there.)
I would suggest that the public romance was scripted, and that Jane was selected to play the girlfriend because of her mother, Margaret Augusta Eliot. She was a gifted musician (oboe) and music professor at the Guildhill School of Music and Drama. (One of her more famous students was Sir George Martin.) This was a musical household. It might have been John and Paul (and Mike) banging on the keys, or might also have been a meeting place for highly trained musicians, supervised by Margaret. Why else would she allow her teen-age daughter to shack up with a shaggy rock star? Where is dignity? This might be a clue to who wrote the Beatles’ music – a question for some other day.
Jane Asher publicly dated both Paul and Mike McCartney as seen in these two photos. I cannot help but notice that they don’t appear terribly happy together in either, but this is a small sample. Faul and Jane would not break up until 1968. Here is the Wikipedia account of that breakup:
In mid-1968, Asher returned to London from an acting assignment in Bristol earlier than expected and caught McCartney in bed with Francie Schwartz. A fan who frequently hung around Paul’s Cavendish Avenue home claims to have witnessed the incident, saying “…Paul brought this American girl home…[and a little while later]…another car turned into Cavendish Avenue — it was Jane. She’d come back…earlier than she was supposed to. Jane went into the house. A bit later on she came storming out again and drove away.” Shortly after, Margaret Asher drove to Cavendish to collect her daughter’s things.
Again we have scripting! We would never have known about this incident had not a young fan happen to be staking out the joint, and at just the right time, also apparently able to recognize an American from a distance. Otherwise we might never have known of the affair or of Francie Schwartz, another young girl who stumbled on the scene and had access to the boys as they made the White Album. We are witness to what appears to be a staged breakup.
Jane Asher helped provide the seamless transition from Paul to Faul by publicly dating both men. It was a perception management gig for her, who would go on to a very successful acting career. She was part of the entourage from the beginning, and was assigned and played a critical role in the official switch.
Faul, in his Beatle career and later often sported a beard. Many in the PID community suggest that this was done to mask surgical scars as they healed. I doubt it – if there had been surgery, it would have been years earlier, as Mike was there from the beginning. The switch, Paul to Faul, was much more subtle. The genius was not to replace Paul as much as erase him from our minds. Faul eased into the picture, first in ’63 and only overseas, and then in Help!, and finally permanently after Rubber Soul. The beard masked subtle differences in the two, and when enough time passed, clean-shaven Faul had taken real Paul’s place in our minds.
On the album Abbey Road, the boys at then end sang a chorus-like song after the Golden Slumbers, obviously meant to imply Paul’s death and replacement by Mike. It went “Boy, you’re gonna carry that weight, carry that weight a long time.” Indeed, Faul has done that, playing the part of Paul now for over half a century.
Photos on the Internet are often flipped – but notice his shirt is buttoned left over right, as is normal for a man. This photo is legit.
(Nice little metaphor here, though accidental: John Lennon also pretended to be a lefty in public, politically speaking.)
Mike is a pretty good musician. He’s not really useful in influencing young people anymore. He has not had a hit in decades. But Wings did some credible work.
*Psy-op: Psychological operations are planned operations to convey selected information and indicators to audiences to influence their emotions, motives, and objective reasoning, and ultimately the behavior of governments, organizations, groups, and individuals.
Below are a few photos, one of Paul, and the rest of Mike, showing how easy it is to identify Mike due to his cowlick. His hair, even as a young boy, divided on the right side of his head. It was an un-trainable cowlick. Paul’s hair is always full and uninterrupted.
These are all Mike. The hair says it all. (Note that three other guys also must be aware that is is twin Mike, and not Paul.)
Note: I am aware that Miles Mathis published a paper on this subject. In that paper, I am the “Friend from Colorado.” It was me who discovered the McCartney twins, hidden in plain site. I submitted this work to him for publishing, but he preferred to do his own write-up, which is his business.