Mixing "Give Ireland Back To The Irish"

Thursday, February 3, 1972 • For Wings

Album Songs recorded during this session officially appear on the Give Ireland Back To The Irish 7" Single.
Island Studios, London, UK


Production staff

Paul McCartney:
Glyn Johns:
Mixing engineer


Wings had recorded “Give Ireland Back To The Irish” two days earlier, on February 1, 1972. It’s unclear if they work on the track or its instrumental version (released as the B-side of the single) on February 2.

On this day, February 3, they were at Island Records’ studio, along with engineer Glyn Johns, to mix the track.

Michael Watts, from Melody Maker, was in the studio as well, to write an article that would be published on February 12:

MACKA, as they used to call him at school, was sitting behind the mixing console in Island Records’ basement studio, listening to the vocal thundering from the four speakers.

Why don’t we compress it?” suggested someone from the gloom. “Yeah,” he said, turning to the engineer at his side. “If we compress it what happens?

It gets squashed.

Yeah, but not like squashed,” he persisted. “Can’t it be on another level?” Long moment of hesitation. “Oh, let’s hear it flat again, then. Okay?

… Give Ireland back to the Irish / Don’t make them have to take it away / Give Ireland back to the Irish / Make Ireland Irish today…

Meanwhile, the Missus is seated on a rumpled black leather chair in front of the control board, wearing a thin voluminous dress, patterned with huge red carnations, that stretches to mid-calf. They’ve hardly slept for the past two days.

Later, after this chorus, this state of the nation, has been played for the fiftieth time. Linda confides. The lyrics are really child-like, she says: “I think Paul feels embarrassed – or he feels he should be.“ […]

From Melody Maker, February 12, 1972

It’s not really me. At least, I think people will be surprised because I’ve never attempted anything like this. It was Bloody Sunday. I woke up a few days ago with the thought in my head and wondered, why don’t I do it? You read the papers and you don’t take it in. You don’t realise that that’s happening.

The song’s like, the Irish liked us before and now they hate us. What I’m saying is that in the beginning, it was the Protestants against the Catholics but now it’s the Irish against us. The Protestants are all like Heath. They’re English, the landowners. If you send the troops in there what can you expect but the people to be mad. You wouldn’t like it if some guy came into your home and started ordering you around. So I’m saying this to the Government, to Heath. And it’s also a bit like with Apple and me, being prevented from owning what is mine.

Paul McCartney – From Melody Maker, February 12, 1972

Wings would continue working on the track the next day, February 4.

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