I'm Carrying

Written by Paul McCartney

Album This song officially appears on the London Town Official album.
Timeline This song has been officially released in 1978

Song facts

From Wikipedia:

“I’m Carrying” is a song written by Paul McCartney that was first released on Wings 1978 album London Town. It was also released as the B-side of the “London Town” single. In 2003 it was later released on the soundtrack to the film The In-Laws.

“I’m Carrying” is a gentle love song. Although Linda McCartney, Paul’s wife, was a member of Wings, the song was not inspired by her but rather by a former girlfriend of Paul McCartney’s. The song has a simple structure, with two verses and a refrain. In the first verse, McCartney sings that he will come to his lover’s room after an absence bringing gifts and a carnation. In the second verse, he sings that he has been away for a long time and wonders if his return will lack style. The refrain simply notes that he is carrying something for his lover.

“I’m Carrying” is in the key of E major and based on four chords. McCartney originally recorded the song accompanied by just his acoustic guitar during the London Town sessions aboard the stern of the yacht Fair Carol in the Virgin Islands on 5 May 1977. In December 1977, he overdubbed orchestral strings and he also overdubbed his own playing of an electric guitar using a Gizmo. The Gizmo is a device invented by 10cc members Kevin Godley and Lol Creme, which allows a guitar to be played by vibrating the strings rather than plucking them.

Author John Blaney notes that “I’m Carrying” expresses sentiments similar to those McCartney sang on The Beatles’ “Yesterday,” noting that “I’m Carrying” is “less adventurous melodically but no less welcoming.” Allmusic critic Stephen Thomas Erlewine calls it “nice” and “understated.” George Harrison chose “I’m Carrying” as his favorite song from London Town. CD Review Magazine described the song as a “silly love song that’s sweet, simple, and tuneful.” Billboard Magazine’s Timothy White considers the song one of McCartney’s post-Beatle peaks.

The Wings’ version of “I’m Carrying” was used in the soundtrack for the film The In-Laws in 2003. The song is also incorporated in the soundtrack to the Greg MacGillivray film To the Arctic 3D, including for a scene in which a mother polar bear plays with her cubs.[10][11]

Sham Rock covered “I’m Carrying” on their 2004 album The Album.[12] Guitarist Phil Keaggy played the song with Paul McCartney at the wedding of Linda McCartney’s sister Laura Eastman.[13]


I’ve always preferred Paul’s good melodies to his screaming rock & roll tunes. The tune I thought was sensational on the London Town album was “I’m Carrying,”. But all the noisy, beaty things I’m not into at all. But then that’s not only with Paul’s music, that goes right across the board. I’m not a fan of that sort of punky, heavy, tinny stuff. I like a nice melody.

George Harrison – Interview Rolling Stone, 1979

Lyrics

By dawn's first light I'll come back to your room again
With my carnation hidden by the packages
I'm carrying, something
I'm carrying something for you

Ah, long time no see baby, sure has been a while
And if my reappearance lacks a sense of style
I'm carrying, something
I'm carrying something for you

I'm carrying
I'm carrying, can't help it

I'm carrying
I'm carrying something for you

Officially appears on


London Town

Official album • Released in 1978

2:44 • Studio versionA

Paul McCartney :
Acoustic guitar, Electric guitar, Producer, Synthesizers, Vocals
Geoff Emerick :
Recording engineer
Mark Vigars :
Assistant engineer
Pete Henderson :
Assistant engineer
Steve Churchyard :
Assistant engineer

Session Recording:
May 05, 1977
Studio :
Record Plant Mobile Studio, Fair Carol Yacht, US Virgin Islands

Session Overdubs:
December 3 to 14, 1977
Studio :
AIR Studios, London, UK

Credits & recording details courtesy of Luca Perasi • Buy Paul McCartney: Music Is Ideas. The Stories Behind the Songs (Vol. 1) 1970-1989 on Amazon


London Town / I'm Carrying

7" Single • Released in 1978

Studio version


London Town (1993)

Official album • Released in 1993

2:44 • Studio versionA

Paul McCartney :
Acoustic guitar, Electric guitar, Producer, Synthesizers, Vocals
Geoff Emerick :
Recording engineer
Mark Vigars :
Assistant engineer
Pete Henderson :
Assistant engineer
Steve Churchyard :
Assistant engineer

Session Recording:
May 05, 1977
Studio :
Record Plant Mobile Studio, Fair Carol Yacht, US Virgin Islands

Session Overdubs:
December 3 to 14, 1977
Studio :
AIR Studios, London, UK

Credits & recording details courtesy of Luca Perasi • Buy Paul McCartney: Music Is Ideas. The Stories Behind the Songs (Vol. 1) 1970-1989 on Amazon


The In-Laws (Music From The Motion Picture)

Official album • Released in 2003

2:44 • Studio versionA

Paul McCartney :
Acoustic guitar, Electric guitar, Producer, Synthesizers, Vocals
Geoff Emerick :
Recording engineer
Mark Vigars :
Assistant engineer
Pete Henderson :
Assistant engineer
Steve Churchyard :
Assistant engineer

Session Recording:
May 05, 1977
Studio :
Record Plant Mobile Studio, Fair Carol Yacht, US Virgin Islands

Session Overdubs:
December 3 to 14, 1977
Studio :
AIR Studios, London, UK

Credits & recording details courtesy of Luca Perasi • Buy Paul McCartney: Music Is Ideas. The Stories Behind the Songs (Vol. 1) 1970-1989 on Amazon


The 7” Singles Box

7" Single • Released in 2022

2:44 • Studio versionA2022 • 2022 remaster

Paul McCartney :
Acoustic guitar, Electric guitar, Producer, Synthesizers, Vocals
Geoff Emerick :
Recording engineer
Mark Vigars :
Assistant engineer
Pete Henderson :
Assistant engineer
Steve Churchyard :
Assistant engineer
Alex Wharton :
Remastering

Session Recording:
May 05, 1977
Studio :
Record Plant Mobile Studio, Fair Carol Yacht, US Virgin Islands

Session Overdubs:
December 3 to 14, 1977
Studio :
AIR Studios, London, UK

Credits & recording details courtesy of Luca Perasi • Buy Paul McCartney: Music Is Ideas. The Stories Behind the Songs (Vol. 1) 1970-1989 on Amazon

Bootlegs


MoMac's Hidden Tracks Vol.10

Unofficial album

2:51 • Studio version


London Town Roughs And Demos

Unofficial album • Released in 1991

2:52 • Studio version


Water Wings

Unofficial album • Released in 1999

2:50 • Rough mix • From Stereo 1978 Test Pressing Acetate - With Rough Different Mix


Water Wings

Unofficial album • Released in 1999

2:52 • Studio version


UK Singles Collection - Volume 02

Unofficial album • Released in 2007

2:45 • Studio version


Latest concerts where I'm Carrying has been played

Paul McCartney has never played this song in concert.

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