Timeline Albums, EPs & singles Songs Films Concerts Sessions People Interviews Articles

Sunday, June 18, 2023

Interview for CBS

Interview for CBS Sunday Morning

Interview of Paul McCartney

Last updated on July 21, 2023


  • Published: Jun 18, 2023
  • Published by: CBS
  • Interview by: Anthony Mason


  • Interview location: National Portrait Gallery, London, UK


Interviews from the same media

This interview remains the property of the respective copyright owner, and no implication of ownership by us is intended or should be inferred. Any copyright owner who wants something removed should contact us and we will do so immediately.

Amidst the promotional campaign for his new photography book and accompanying photo exhibition “1964: Eyes of the Storm,” Paul McCartney participated in interviews with BBC1BBC Radio 4CBS Sunday Morning, and the online magazine, The Face. Additionally, he took part in an on-stage conversation at The Tribeca Film Festival, where he shared the spotlight with renowned American TV personality Conan O’Brien. Moreover, he partook in a live-streamed conversation alongside Stanley Tucci.

On this day, June 18, 2023, the interview for CBS Sunday Morning was broadcast.

Paul McCartney used his Pentax camera the same way he used his guitar, with total freedom.

Paul McCartney: Taking photographs, I’d be just looking for a shot. And so I held the camera and just sort of see where I like to, you know, oh, that’s it. And invariably, you pretty much take one picture.

Early in 1964, the 21-year-old took his new camera on perhaps the most momentous musical journey of the 20th century, The Beatles’ invasion of America.

Paul McCartney: I think we were moving fast. So you just learned to take pictures quickly.

Hundreds of his photographs from that trip were recently rediscovered in McCartney’s archive.

Paul McCartney: It was really nice. Number one, because I thought they were lost.

The images, collected in the new book, “1964, Eyes of the Storm”, will be on view later this month at the National Portrait Gallery in London.

Paul McCartney: This picture was when we were arriving at, I think it was the Deauville Hotel in Miami.

Q: I think your quote in the book was, I can almost hear her scream.

Paul McCartney: Yeah, you can. The cop’s gotta restrain her, you know.

Q: Well, I also love the cop in the foreground who just sort of looks… puzzled by everything.

Paul McCartney: I know. I like the architecture of that hotel. But, you know, as you were saying before, that was had to be taken really quickly. Yeah. I had to snap that.

Q: But you have to have an eye to take that.

Paul McCartney: [joking] It’s my left one.

The Beatles had started their trip in Paris.

Paul McCartney: And it was in Paris that we got the telegram, congratulations boys, number one in the US charts.

Q: And you had said you won’t go to America unless you have a number one.

Paul McCartney: I know. And you know, that was pretty spunky to kind of think that. But I’d seen quite a few of our major stars go to the States and we’re going, well, he’s going to leave us now, he’ll be famous over there. But then he’d come back and they weren’t famous. So I said, well, if we go over there, I really don’t wanna come back with our tail between our legs.

In America, they played the Ed Sullivan Show. 73 million people would tune in. McCartney calls it the moment all hell breaks loose.

Q: To look at those pictures, it’s kind of you looking at the world looking at you. And you seemed very comfortable with it.

A: Yeah. I mean, you know, you’ve got to think about it. We’re kids from Liverpool. And we’re trying to get famous. And it’s not easy. And we were like stars in America. And people loved us. So we loved it. And having that number one was really the secret. Because if the journalists, you know, New York journalists, [taking a New York journalist accent] ‘hey, Beatle, hey, why are you here?’ Why, you know, we’re number one in your country. Bingo.

McCartney captured the commotion on the streets around New York’s Plaza Hotel and the crowd that chased them when they snuck out the side door.

Q: There was one reporter who said you were like prisoners with room service.

A: Yeah, that was kind of true, but we like room service. You know, we never had it before.

From New York, the Beatles traveled by train to Washington, D.C. McCartney’s camera took the ride, too.

Q: Is this from the train, too?

Paul McCartney: Yeah. They’re pretty much all on the train or from the train. I love this guy. He’s like from where I’m from. He looked great. He’s got his hand up like…

Q: He’s got a little smile, too, I think.

Paul McCartney: Yeah, he’s got a little smile, yeah. It’s nice. It’s a great memory, you know, for me.

So many of McCartney’s pictures were taken on the move.

Q: You shot that from your car?

Paul McCartney: Yeah, the policeman in Miami, he just pulled right up next to me. And that was basically what I saw. And we’d never seen policemen with guns. We just didn’t have that in England.

But in Miami, McCartney broke out the color film.

Paul McCartney: For us, it was like going on holiday.

The Fab Four even had a few days off.

Q: There’s some great shots of all of you with, like, looked like terrycloth jackets.

Paul McCartney: Yeah. The hotel surprised them. You know, you normally get, like, a robe. Yeah. But this place, because it was Miami, had these little cool little short things and hats. We lived in them for days. Even Brian, our manager, we thought they were really cool items of clothing.

He caught George relaxing with an anonymous admirer.

Paul McCartney: In that picture, yeah, I don’t think I was trying to protect her identity. I love her bathing costume.

Q: Yeah, it’s a great shot.

Paul McCartney: So great. Yeah. And, you know, there’s George, I keep saying, living the life. He’s got a drink, which is probably a scotch and coke. He’s got a tan, girl in the yellow bikini. From Liverpool, that was exceptionally wonderful.

The band went back home to England in late February. By early April, the Beatles had the top five songs on the US charts. McCartney writes, “we spent the months and years after holding on for dear life”.

Q: Did you remember all these when you saw them?

Paul McCartney: Kind of. It was a very memorable period.

Q: Oh, sure. But there was so much going on, I’m amazed you could process it and keep it all.

Paul McCartney: Yeah, so am I.

McCartney’s not only looking back at photos of his past, but he announced last week to the BBC that this fall he’ll be releasing what he says is the last Beatles record, a John Lennon demo tape that McCartney’s remixing using the latest artificial intelligence technology. The music, like Paul McCartney’s pictures, all part of the Beatles’ enduring legacy.


From This week on “Sunday Morning” (June 18) – CBS News, June 17, 2023:

PHOTOGRAPHY: Rediscovering Paul McCartney’s photos of The Beatles’ 1964 invasion

Paul McCartney recently uncovered photographs he’d thought were lost – ones he took during The Beatles’ first tour of America in 1964. The pictures – candid shots from the vantage point of newly-anointed superstars – are the basis of a new book, “1964: Eyes of the Storm,” and an exhibition at London’s National Portrait Gallery. Correspondent Anthony Mason gets a private tour with McCartney, who talks about documenting the astonishing welcome that the “lads from Liverpool” received.

Paul McCartney writing

Talk more talk, chat more chat

Notice any inaccuracies on this page? Have additional insights or ideas for new content? Or just want to share your thoughts? We value your feedback! Please use the form below to get in touch with us.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

2024 • Please note this site is strictly non-commercial. All pictures, videos & quoted texts remain the property of the respective copyright owner, and no implication of ownership by us is intended or should be inferred. Any copyright owner who wants something removed should contact us and we will do so immediately. Alternatively, we would be delighted to provide credits.