Martha My Dear (Lennon/McCartney)

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Martha My Dear (Lennon/McCartney)

Martha My Dear is a song by Paul featuring only Paul and with brass and string arrangements by George Martin.

The inspiration behind Martha

Jane Asher and Paul McCartney with his dog Martha

Jane Asher and Paul with Martha

Martha was Paul’s Old English Sheepdog and was born on June 16, 1966. She was his first pet. She died in 1981 at the age of 15. Paul Is Live (1993) features one of Martha’s puppies, Arrow. Although many believe the song to be an admonishment of his former fiance Jane Asher, who broke up with him in 1968, Paul has insisted this is not the case.


“‘You silly girl, look what you’ve done,’ all that sort of stuff. These songs grow. Whereas it would appear to anybody else to be a song to a girl called Martha, it’s actually a dog, and our relationship was platonic, believe me.” – Paul McCartney

“When I taught myself piano I liked to see how far I could go, and this started life almost as a piece you’d learn as a piano lesson. It’s quite hard for me to play, it’s a two-handed thing, like a little set piece. In fact I remember one or two people being surprised that I’d played it because it’s slightly above my level or competence really, but I wrote it as that, something a bit more complex for me to play. Then while I was blocking out words – you just mouth out sounds and some things come – I found the words ‘Martha My Dear’.” – Paul McCartney


  • Paul McCartney – lead vocals, piano, bass, electric guitar, drums, handclaps
  • Bernard Mille, Dennis McConnell, Lou Sofier, Les Maddox – violins
  • Leo Birnbaum, Henry Myerscough – violas
  • Henry Myerscough – viola
  • Reginald Kilby, Frederick Alexander, Peter Halling – cellos
  • Leon Calvert – trumpet, flugelhorn
  • Stanley Reynolds, Ronnie Hughes – trumpets
  • Tony Tunstall – French horn
  • Ted Barker – trombone
  • Alf Reece – tuba

Release history

Notable covers

  • Slade (from Beginnings)

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