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I’m singer/songwriter Paul McCartney and I just released my new album McCartney III on Friday. AMA!
Hi, Paul McCartney here. I just released my new album McCartney III on Friday, recorded in Rockdown. I was also in a couple of bands.
You can get McCartney III on Amazon today for a special price of $3.99: https://www.amazon.com/McCartney-III-Paul/dp/B08L8PB15J/ Check out the lead single Find My Way here: https://youtu.be/2oSmP3GtOBk Watch the animated short film for When Winter Comes here: https://youtu.be/2oSmP3GtOBk
How would you describe McCartney III in three words?
Quite a surprise!
Which song from the new album is your personal favorite? Or which one was the most fun when recording?
Favourite: Always difficult to say as they change, but at the moment it’s Deep Deep Feeling.
Hey paul! I love you and your work, McCartney III is such a blessing in these difficult times. My question is: what’s the song in the new album that you had the most fun playing? It sounds like you had a great time in all tracks!
The Kiss Of Venus was interesting because that was a song I had to play straight on acoustic guitar. It was fun to do and I was happy with how it turned out
There are quite a few references to winter on this album. Winter is a word from both the first track, long tail winter bird and the last, when winter comes. There’s also winter like imagery in the lyrics of seize the day, eg. “when the cold days come,” and the reference to Santa Claus. Does this imagery have any significance?
I like all four seasons actually! The main reason we get the winter thing on this album is because the song When Winter Comes was originally going to be a bonus track on the Flaming Pie reissue. But i liked it, and thought it deserved a bit more than that, so I ended up making a short animation film with Geoff Dunbar that came out yesterday. Geoff asked me to do a short piece of music for the opening title, and another for the end titles. As I was in lockdown (with nothing better to do!) it gave me a great reason to go to the studio, and that really started the whole project. I did those pieces of film music and then extended the little opening piece, and that became Long Tailed Winter Bird. So the whole winter thing just came from When Winter Comes. And then ‘the cold days’ just slipped out. I didn’t even mean to write that! But sometimes, stream of consciousness throws up a good idea, so that led me to write “we’d better seize the day”
Hey Paul! Congratulations on the new album. How long does it usually take for you to write a song? Thanks!
It depends! Sometimes it can be as little as two hours. Or, if you figure out the music first and not the words, that it can be a lengthy process. It can be a month before you get words you’re happy with. So between two hours and a month!
Greetings Sir Paul! I’ve been a lifelong fan of your work and I have one question to ask. What is your favorite performance you’ve done? Thank you!
I think the last show we did at Dodger Stadium in LA was great fun, it was a great crowd and things went down very well.
Hi Paul! I’m a massive beatlefan (including your respective solo careers!). I love McCartney III, especially Deep Deep Feeling, it’s very unique, even amongst your technicolour catalogue. Please could you tell me how – after all these years – you manage to keep those creative juices flowing? Your originality continues to be second to none. You are second to none. You and your friends made the soundtrack to my life. Sincere thanks from Perth, Australia!
There’s only one answer and it’s just because i love making music! And on this album I thought I was just experimenting, but it turns out I was making a record.
Hi Paul! So excited you’re doing this chat, I adore McCartney III! Recently you’ve talked about how you’re a “saver”… I’m curious if you’ve hung onto any of your old outfits, like your iconic white suit you wore a lot in 1967, or your Strawberry jacket from the Wings days? Thank you for being you, and bringing so much joy into the world!! You’re my hero!
I’ve got a lot of old clothes that are just in storage. I don’t really use them! I’ve got one or two jackets from the 60s that amazingly still fit. But Stella’s more interested in looking at them than I am.
Hello Sir Paul! I love your music! If I may ask, what’s your favorite song of George Harrison?
Here Comes The Sun. It is a brilliant song, and the kind of song that’s really good in times like these.
Hi Paul! McCartney III was a fantastic album that fits wonderfully into the trilogy – I haven’t stopped listening to it! What’s Nancy’s favourite song on McCartney III? Secondly, what’re your plans for Christmas now? Are you somewhere in lockdown or can you spend it with your family?
Nancy’s favourite? I think she likes ‘The Kiss Of Venus’. As for Christmas, I’m going to stay at home, and yes I’ll be eating far too much with my family!
What’s you favorite instrument to play?
It’s a choice between guitar and piano. Oh, and bass. I don’t really have a favourite instrument, to be honest! I write on whichever is nearest.
Hi Paul – I notice you play a recorder in the McCartney III video. Which song is it on? Love the whole album – JoAnn
That is on ‘Long Tailed Winter Bird’. I’ve been playing recorder very badly since the 60s!
Hey Paul! What’s you’re favorite kind of bird? I’m a wood duck man myself.
A wren. Jenny Wren! One of the smallest birds in Britain, and exciting to see because it’s quite rare.
Hey Paul, If you were trapped on a desert island and could take a single item with you what would it be?
My wife Nancy.
May be a bit late to this but Merry Christmas, and just curious, what’s your favorite board game?
Merry Christmas! I have to say Monopoly. But we don’t always finish, the game can go on so long that I end up being too bored or a sore loser!
Hello Paul! I’m grateful for yet another magnificent album from you. Here are my questions:
- Are you as satisfied with the end result of this album as you were with previous studio works?
- Which songs from McCartney III would you most likely enjoy playing live if concerts can be resumed?
Bonus: In which song did you play a saucepan? 😉 Love from Spain. Jaime.
Yeah, this one is perhaps more pleasing because I wasn’t trying to make an album! It was quite a surprise and so quite a pleasant one. As for songs to play live, I think Slidin’ could be fun, and Find My Way and The Kiss Of Venus. Bonus answer: I sometimes do that at parties when I’ve had a drink…
Hey Paul! Loved the new album! I feel like I say that with every new album, but this one in particular really feels like something special. I have a two-part question.
- RAM was met with lukewarm to negative reviews upon its release but has since gone on to be considered possibly your best solo album by many critics. How have you personally viewed RAM since its initial release?
- Also do you have any plans for RAM’s 50th anniversary coming up this May? I know the Macca fanbase is always happy with more RAM related releases.
Thank you so much for doing this Paul! Hope you have a wonderful Christmastime! Stay healthy 🙂
Well, when RAM first came out I was proud of it. But yeah, the reviews weren’t great. So I didn’t bother with it for a few years, until my nephew Jay told me it was his favourite album. Since then I’ve heard that from quite a few people so it’s back in favour! And the only plans I have for May next year are to dance around the May pole.
What has been your favourite ever song to perform live?
It varies. On the last tour, ‘Come On To Me’ and ‘Fuh You’ were my favourites, but ‘Hey Jude’ is always great. It’s great to see the crowd singing altogether with one voice. It’s inspiring.
Do you still play your Rickenbacker bass or do you just use the hofner?
I mainly use the Hofner these days, but I keep promising myself I’ll get back into the Ricky.
Hi Paul! Love the new album! My question is about the music that inspires you now. Are there any newer (or older) artists that you listen to? Any artists that you would fancy collaborating with?
I’m lucky, I have a friend who sends me new music which helps me keep in touch with the modern scene. So I listen to people like Dominic Fike, Beck, St Vincent, and Khruangbin. I also listen to a lot of classic oldies coming through, from rock n’ roll to 60’s to soul to R’n’B, with a sprinkling of classical music now and then.
Hey Paul! I’ll go in a different direction with this one- what shows have you binged in quarantine?
Peaky Blinders, which everyone told me was great but I’d never got round to seeing it. So I just binge watched that. And they were right. It is great!
Who drew the wee man on the inside of the gatefold of Mc Cartney III ? I rate the art work A+
That’s one of mine. It’s actually a little painting based on my smiling face signature. I’ll take the A+ and run!
“When Winter Comes” is my favorite song on McCartney III, a perfect new addition to my Christmas playlists 🙂 . What made you decide to revisit it after recording it originally? Where did the animated video concept come from?
At our office party last year I was chatting to my friend Geoff Dunbar, who I had made animated shorts with previously. I asked if he would want to make another film about using the song ‘When Winter Comes’. He agreed to do it and assembled a team of animators, who all happened to be women. I pointed this out to him and he said he wanted an all girl band! The look of the video was very loosely based on some of Humphrey Ocean’s drawings of birds.
Hi Paul! I saw the sneak peek released yesterday by Peter Jacksson from the upcoming Get Back documentary and got really excited! How much of this never before released material have you seen and was there anything that got you excited as well? Memories tend to fade and sometimes you don’t remember things quite as they were, was there anything that surprised you? All the best to you and your family and thank you for the music!
I think the main thing was that after the release of the ‘Let it Be’ film I was saddened with the break up of the Beatles. And the film always reminded me of that. So I was very happily surprised when Peter Jackson told me he’d been reviewing the unseen 56 hours of footage and he found it to be entertaining and upbeat. Since then I’ve seen clips from it and it’s very joyful. I particularly like me and John jiving together. And also the birth of the song Get Back. It’s pretty exciting, I must say. Crazy!
Hi Paul, QUESTION: I Love McCartney III. I bought two of the colored vinyl (pink and the exclusive yellow from your website). Can you please finally clear up for all of us when the last time was you actually saw John Lennon in person? Some argue it was the infamous night where you two almost went down to Saturday Night Live in 1976. But, your son James has said John held him as a baby so that 1976 date can’t be right. There’s also the rumor that you and John and Linda and Yoko went to see the movie called Pretty Baby in 1978. Would you mind clearing this up for both history and for the fans? Thank you!!!
I think it was on a visit to New York and unfortunately I don’t remember the year, so I’d have to say ‘Some Time in New York’.
Hi Paul! I loved “Egypt Station”, and I can’t wait to find the time to listen to “McCartney III” with all the time and respect you and your music deserve. Is there a song in your catalogue that you thought “Hmm, I’d love to change something about it (maybe the lyrics, maybe the instruments)”? Have you ever thought of “revamping” (not that they need it, though) or making an album with old songs with very different arrangements? Thank you, you’ve always been an inspiration, a role model and an enjoyment to listen to. Much love from Chile ♥
I don’t have any plans to do that at the moment, but it’s always an intriguing idea to reimagine songs. I was thinking about ‘She’s Leaving Home’ this morning, and thinking that’s not a bad song. And it would be interesting to re-do the backing for ‘Waterfalls’ from McCartney II because I used a cheap synthesiser and so it could be intriguing to hear it with a really good proper orchestra. But then again, the cheap synthesiser might be the winner. And the truth is I don’t have time to do that, because I’m doing things like going on the internet to talk to you!
Hi Paul! during Tim’s listening party you said that Lavatory Lil harks back to the Beatles song Polythene Pam. Was Polythene Pam a conscious inspiration for the writing for Lavatory Lil or did the similarities dawn on you only after you had finished it? Thank you!
The similarities were noticed by me after I’d written ‘Lavatory Lil”. They’re both songs about fictitious characters and we’d met people similar to them in life.
Hi Paul! Thanks for doing this. I have two questions. One from my dad and one from me.
- First, my dad wants to know if in addition to singing backup vocals on The Stones’ “We Love You,” are you also on the flip side “Dandelion?” It is a question that has been bugging him for over 50 years and nobody has gone on record denying it is you and John.
- My question is with all of the attention your career in The Beatles has earned, and how it influences your setlist, have you ever thought of digging more into your vastly underrated Wings and solo catalog for your setlist? Would love to hear more from Ram, Tug of War, and Red Rose Speedway and especially Back to the Egg at future shows!
You know, that was quite a loose and funky session so whilst I remember being on ‘We Love You’, I’m not sure about ‘Dandelion’. But we were certainly having fun so it could been me, you’ll have to ask Mick! And I always love the idea of doing a deep dive into those songs, but I feel like it’s difficult to do too much for the average audience unless I was to do a special show entitled: Deep Dive.
Paul, if you could choose one artist from any point in history to make an album with, who would it be?
There’s an awful lot of them. John Lennon, he’s pretty good. And then there’s George. And Ringo. And then there’s Elvis. And Chuck Berry… It’s impossible to choose, the list goes on and on!
Hello Sir McCartney! I am a multi instrumentalist such as yourself and one thing I struggle with is writing my own music. I struggle because I feel as though whatever I could play or say has already been played or said. When you write, how do you deal with your internal critic? After your spirited career, do you still have an internal critic?
Oh yeah, I have one. The answer is you have to push on through and finish the song, because sometimes you reach a point that lifts the whole thing to a new level. So it’s worth the effort. And then the internal critic is silenced.
Will there be a sequel to Temporary Secretary?
No, I’ve got a full time secretary now. But she doesn’t sit on my lap, because my wife would kill me. Just kidding, Nancy!
Sir Paul, What in particular brings you joy in these trying times?
Music and family
What was your favorite part about working with Dave Grohl?
His enthusiasm and exuberance are infectious. When he invited me to his studio and we had no plan in mind, but I had just been given a great cigar box guitar by Johnny Depp, so once that came into the mix and Krist Novoselic and Pat Smear joined in, then the result was pure excitement. It ended up in the song ‘Cut Me Some Slack’ which won a GRAMMY!
Hi Paul! Huge fan. One of the great mysteries of Sgt Pepper is who sang the “ahs” immediately after you sing “and I fell into a dream” on A Day In The Life. Was that you or John singing there?
I seem to remember we all sang it. But I was definitely in there.
Hi Paul!! Obviously I’m a huge fan, like everyone else. My question is, how much do you perceive your influence to be? From the Beatles basically changing music forever for a lot of people, to your own personal music, Wings, etc., there’s no question that many people think you, along with others of course, changed music for the better and it’s still seen today. How do you feel about how much you’ve influenced music?
The whole success of The Beatles had a great affect on Wings and then had a great affect on what I do today, so it’s all had a very good affect on my life and my music.
Hi Paul! We’ve heard a lot of Beatles stories; what are some of your favourite Wings stories?
I think the most exciting thing, or the most exciting time, was after we’d made ‘Band on the Run’. We played in America in 1976 and after having taken some time to form the band and to get good, this was finally the pay off: a very successful tour of North America!
SIR PAUL MCCARTNEY, I hope to God this gets answered but nevertheless, Where did the song One after 909 spring about from? I have The Quarrymen bootleg with the wire reel 1960 version theres 2 of them and for some reason moovin and groovin is labeled “guitar bop” hahahah but aside from that; what was the idea behind the song catching the wrong train? I practice singing and playing it often and I see that it was quite the evolution of a song going to surfy in 62 at the cavern and twangy country in 63 in the emi tapes. Has to be my favorite song the beatles did besides sheik of araby and other early 60s tunes. Hope you answer, im a big fan and constantly play your songs. with respect, -Nathan
I think the main idea was that John and I were trying to write together, and we both like blues and country and western music, so this song has elements of both of those. The idea of missing the train just arrived at the station!
Hi Paul!! You’re such a huge inspiration of mine, and your music has played a huge part in my life so firstly I just wanted to say THANK YOU! Secondly, I was wondering what your favourite part about writing, recording and producing the album was!
It’s a mixture of all them. Writing can be fun and surprising. Recording this album was liberating and quite experimental. And playing them live is another great thing to do!
What advice would you give to someone who wanted to write, record and produce an album all by themselves?
Get a job! That’s the only answer. No, I’m teasing. More sensibly, the answer is to stick to it!
Hey Sir Paul! If you could collab with any musician in the future, who would it be?
I’ve always had a sneaky feeling to collaborate with Bob Dylan, but it’s never happened. It’s intriguing, but…
Hello Paul, I am probably in the youngest age group of your fans. My grandfather loved your music and introduced me to you! My question: how does it feel to have created something so timeless, that it will be enjoyed for generations to come? I love the new album, and the music videos go great with them. Such a joy to watch. Thank you.
Thank you! I’m really happy about how McCartney III has been received because, as I said at the beginning, it jumped out and surprised me. I had no intention of making a third McCartney album, but I was very happy when I realised I had done. And I got to have so much fun making it! It was a perfect way to spend lockdown. It made me do Rockdown!
Thank you everyone for all the questions, and thank you for your kind comments about my music. I love you. Have a very happy Christmas and a much better new year!