The Paul McCartney Project

Pugin Hall rehearsals

October 2-25, 1980 • For Wings
Timeline More from year 1980
Studio:
Pugin Hall, Tenterden, Kent, UK

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About

In October, Wings were in the studio for their last sessions together. The plan was to have George Martin producing the next Wings LP. But in the end, Wings got dismantled, the loyal Denny Laine stayed some more months, and George Martin produced Tug Of War.

The quiet Kent village of Tenterden was where the initial rehearsals [for “Tug Of War” and “Pipes Of Peace”] began, at the end of 1980, which later led to the beautiful West Indian island of Montserrat, and to the creation of two albums —the massively successful “Tug Of War” and 1983’s “Pipes Of Peace.” Pugin’s Hall, Tenterden was the other-wise inauspicious venue. It was named after Augustus Welby Pugin, the Victorian architect who designed the interior of the Houses of Parliament, and who died insane at Ramsgate aged 40!

After the studio isolation, and strictly solo, “McCartney Il” album of 1980, Paul wanted to work with other sympathetic musicians in an atmosphere of mutual creativity: “It was really a move away from solo stuff, as much as a move away from a definite group, because Wings had broken up for various reasons… George (Martin) and I decided we weren’t going to do ‘Tug Of War’ with Wings because he felt — and I did too — by that time it was getting a bit restricting. We were having to do stuff a particular way because that was who was going to play it. We decided not to be as restricted, and just write anything, and then get in anyone we thought could play it. So this started a new era, working with whoever we thought was most suitable for the tune. If it was a thing that needed Steve Gadd’s particular kind of thing, we decided we’d get him, rather than just asking someone to be like Steve Gadd!”

That musical open-mindedness was something which also appealed to George Martin: “One of the principles that I started off with Paul was — You are probably the greatest living and certainly a multi-songwriter, instrumentalist. Why have people who are not as good as you? Why not have people who are better than you at their particular thing?”

Paul’s decision to ask George Martin to produce the prospective album was an important decision. George remembered the circumstances: “We had always kept in touch, and had just been out together to dinner, and just as they were leaving, Paul said “Oh, there’s one thing I forgot to ask you, would you like to produce my next record?’ I said well now you tell me! My immediate joke was why spoil a beautiful friendship? … Then I said yes, I’d love to work with you again, but will it work?”

From Club Sandwich N° 31, 1983

Last updated on April 3, 2020

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Eight Arms To Hold You • Chip Madinger • Mark Easter

We owe a lot to Chip Madinger and Mark Easter for the creation of those session pages, but you really have to buy this book to get all the details!

Eight Arms To Hold You: The Solo Beatles Compendium is the ultimate look at the careers of John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr beyond the Beatles. Every aspect of their professional careers as solo artists is explored, from recording sessions, record releases and tours, to television, film and music videos, including everything in between. From their early film soundtrack work to the officially released retrospectives, all solo efforts by the four men are exhaustively examined. Not only are John, Paul, George and Ringo's official projects

As the paperback version is out of print, you can buy a PDF version on the authors' website


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