Friday, May 24, 2024

John Eastman, Famed Music Attorney and Paul McCartney Brother-in-Law, Dead at 83: “Words can hardly express our affection for this amazing man”


This is a tough one. I’ve known John Eastman a long time. He was one of the smartest, kindest, and best people I met over the years covering the music business. He died on Tuesday at age 83 after a short fight with pancreatic cancer.

John was the brother of Linda Eastman McCartney, Paul’s first and famous wife. His father, Lee, was something of a genius and he groomed John to take over as lawyer and consigliere for Paul. John steered Paul through the Beatles’ break up, his solo career, and all the Beatles ventures that have come through the years.

It was John Eastman who welcomed me as a reporter, and explained a lot of what was going on to keep it all in focus. But John was also a great family man, low key, soft spoken and often compared to Robert Redford in looks.

Paul posted a tribute to John on social media, which is below. He wrote: “Words can hardly describe his passion for life and our affection for this amazing man.” My condolences to John’s family and his enormous circle of friends. May his memory be a blessing.

PS One of John Eastman’s great achievements was rescuing Billy Joel from legal trouble. Here’s a link.

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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