Elton John helped save John Lennon and Yoko Ono’s marriage, but Yoko said Paul McCartney gets all the credit

Yoko Ono, John Lennon, and Paul McCartney
Yoko Ono, John Lennon, and Paul McCartney / Michael Webb/GettyImages

In late 1973, John Lennon and Yoko Ono split up and entered the most complex 18 months of their marriage. The pair were having marital issues. Yoko needed space, and John was restless. In an unexpected twist, Yoko suggested the couple's assistant May Pang have an affair with her husband. John and Pang traded New York City for L.A. and embarked on what John called his "Lost Weekend."

The period was not as horrible as fans have been led to believe over the years. John and Yoko's split was mutual, after all. The former Beatle didn't party and drink heavily because he was sad. When he wasn't frolicking with his friends, John wisely used his time apart from his wife. While his "Lost Weekend" is described as one of the most destructive and wild periods of his life, it was also one of John's most creative; he recorded three albums. He also reconnected with his first son Julian.

After 18 months, John and Yoko both wanted to return to each other; they just didn't know how. However, with a little help from their friends, they reunited and had their first child, Sean, shortly later.

Elton John helped get John Lennon and Yoko Ono back together

Singer-songwriter Elton John reflected on the time he helped John and Yoko get back together in his book Me (per Page Six). The "Rocket Man" singer wrote about a bet he and John made. In the summer of 1974, the pair recorded John's "Whatever Gets You Thru The Night."

Elton John wagered that if the tune reached No. 1, John would have to perform it with him at Madison Square Garden. "Whatever Gets You Thru The Night" became the lead single for John's Walls and Bridges and his only solo No. 1 single in the U.S. So, John agreed to perform the song with his friend on one condition: he didn't want Yoko there.

John joined Elton John on stage on Thanksgiving Day to perform, but Yoko attended. In Me, Elton John wrote that her appearance was "very Yoko." That night, John, Elton John, and Yoko ended up at the Pierre Hotel. The "Goodbye Yellow Brick Road" singer claimed that the occasion helped the couple reunite.

According to Elton John's guitarist Davey Johnstone (per Yahoo! Entertainment), Elton John "conspired" with John's assistant Tony King to get Yoko to the concert. She sent her husband Gardenias backstage with a good luck note. He wore one of the flowers in his buttonhole on stage but had no idea she was in the crowd.

John's performance at Madison Square Garden didn't just get John and Yoko in the same room again. It was also important because it was John's last public performance.

John and Yoko reunited because of Paul McCartney, the avant-garde artist claims

According to Yoko, someone else was instrumental in reuniting her and her husband; John's former bandmate and fellow Beatle, Paul McCartney. She told The Times (per the Daily Mail) that she wants the world to know that what Paul did for them was one of the most touching things she's ever experienced.

Yoko said Paul was "genuinely" concerned for their marriage. "Even though John was not even asking for help - John, Paul, all of them were too proud to ask anything - he helped," she explained. "John often said he didn't understand why Paul did this for us, but he did."

Yoko said that Paul and his wife Linda visited her during her and John's separation. They talked, and Paul asked her what it would take for her to reunite with John. She said she wanted him to court her.

Shortly after, Paul visited John in L.A. and told him what Yoko had said. He advised his friend on how to win his wife back. John immediately returned to New York. After John's performance with Elton John, the former Beatle began wooing Yoko. He took her to the movies and to a Man Ray exhibition. Less than a year later, the couple welcomed their only child, Sean.

John Lennon and Yoko Ono on a night out.
John Lennon and Yoko Ono / R. Brigden/GettyImages

Pang alleges that Yoko eventually became jealous during John's 'Lost Weekend'

There are many different accounts of John's "Lost Weekend," but one of the most important comes from Pang. The assistant told the Guardian that Yoko eventually got jealous during their arrangement. She was the one who suggested Pang have an affair with John, after all. They discovered later that Yoko wanted to have her own affair and wanted John out of the way.

However, toward the end of John's "Lost Weekend," Yoko constantly called Pang to check up on her husband. "It was over nothing," Pang said. "She would say: 'I just wanted you to know that I took a walk around the block.'" The assistant also said Yoko wasn't used to John siding with Pang.

So, Yoko might have been willing to reunite with John because of her jealousy. Their friends' prodding helped, though. However they reunited, John and Yoko started a new phase of their life together; simple domesticity. They had Sean, and after a five-year hiatus, made music again one last time.

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