- Album This interview has been made to promote the Wingspan Hits And History Official album.
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Rock historian Geoff Barker presents a new two-part tribute to Paul McCartney ‘s post-Beatles band Wings, formed 30 years ago. The series recalls the early days of playing to small college crowds, the drug busts, the ups and downs of personnel changes and chart success despite cool critical reception.
Producer Des Shaw
Band On The Run
The Wings Story
BBC Radio 2
October 20, 2001
About the 1972 university tour:
We got a van, we got our dogs, the kids, all the group and a couple of guitars in the van. A van followed with two roadies and all the equipment and we just drove up the motorway, which was the M1. You go north, don’t you? How does you go looking for gigs? You go north. So we did. No plans, no gigs booked, which is insane really. Cause even bands that are starting have managed to get a couple of bookings, you know. So we didn’t have that. We just.. “Hey, hey, off we go”. We turned off the motorway and go to what we thought to be a likely looking place, Ashby De La Zouche. Well, that’s a kind of exotic name to find in Britain. Still don’t know what it means. What is a La Zouche? Don’t ask. Anyway, so we asked: have you got a university there? Cause that was the plan. We’d go around universities where we know there were lots of young people and would say “do you have us to play for you?” The University Tour! But Ashby De La Zouche said, “no, we don’t have any university”. So we kept going and we went to Nottingham, where they said, “yes we have”. So, one of the roadies went in the Student’s Union Headquarters, who said “We got Paul McCartney in the van, he would like to play for you with his band, tomorrow”. The guys said “pull the other one”. We eventually persuaded him to come out to the van and there were eyes like… “Hello, would you like us to play for you?” “Yeah, alright”. So we said, we’ll come back tomorrow at noon, and we’ll charge 50p. It wasn’t a lot. And the thing is this is what we wanted. With Wings, the idea was to try and do something different.Paul McCartney – From “Band on the Run – The Story of Wings” radio program on BBC Radio2, October 2001
The reason why we took the kids on the road is basically because we loved them. And the idea of leaving them with a nanny, a baby sitter or in a boarding school or however you otherwise would have done it was abbhorant to us. We didn’t fancy it. We just thought “we’ll have them with us, so if anything goes wrong, a little cold, a little fever like kids do, we’ll be there. It will be good for them and for us”.Paul McCartney – From “Band on the Run – The Story of Wings” radio program on BBC Radio2, October 2001