The Paul McCartney Project

Movie Magg

Written by Carl Perkins

Album This song officially appears on the Run Devil Run Official album.
Timeline This song has been officially released in 1999
Sessions This song has been recorded during the following sessions

Spread the love! If you like what you are seeing, share it on social networks and let others know about The Paul McCartney Project.

Song facts

From Wikipedia:

Movie Magg” is a 1955 rockabilly song written by Carl Perkins and released on Flip Records, a subsidiary of Sun Records. Perkins had written the song at the age of thirteen. It was based on the true story of Perkins’ girlfriend Maggie and their occasional trips to the movies at the weekends. Being the son of a poor sharecropper, Perkins did not have a car to drive Maggie to the picture show, so the pair rode on the back of his mule, Becky.

The song was released as a single on March 15, 1955 b/w “Turn Around” on the Sun Records subsidiary label Flip as a 78 and 45, 501. Flip releases were directed towards a country and western market. The song was recorded at Sun studios in Memphis, Tennessee but was not released on Sun because Sam Phillips did not want to have two Sun artists, Elvis Presley and Carl Perkins, targeting the same market. The next release by Perkins, “Gone, Gone, Gone”/”Let The Jukebox Keep On Playing”, 224, would be on the Sun label. Once Elvis Presley left Sun, Phillips focused on Carl Perkins as the major rock and roll and pop artist on the label.

Paul McCartney recorded a version of the song on his 1999 album Run Devil Run. Paul McCartney administers the Carl Perkins song catalogue through his publishing company MPL Communications. […]

From the liner notes of “Run Devil Run“:

This was the first song Carl Perkins wrote. “I knew Carl, he was a great old country boy who used to pick cotton and he’d have all these stories. This one is about his girlfriend Maggie, who he’d sometimes take to the movies on his mule, old Becky. They had no car so they rode to the movie show. And it’s true.”

From an interview with Laura Gross (promotional interview for “Run Devil Run” in 1999):

Paul McCartney: Movie Magg is a Carl Perkins song. And as you may know, the Beatles were like really major fans of Carl. And we had a lot of his records, really, in our formative years. And it was another artist who we’d sit around playing. And we did a lot of his songs, actually. And Movie Magg was one I always liked. It’s a crazy little song. When I got to know Carl later on, I asked him about that. I said, what is that song about then. And Carl was such a country dude that he actually picked cotton when he was a kid, you know. He is from a very poor family. So he’ll tell you stories and actually this story is about him gonna take this girl Maggie to the movies and he stood, he wants to take her on his horse of his called Becky. And it turns out it’s a mule. And it’s a real horse. He said, well, Paul, you know, when I was a kid, we had a mule called Becky. And it turns out this is like his, this is a real story. He had a girl friend called Maggie and he did polish up old Becky and they rode on Becky’s back to the movies. So I just thought, that is just so great. So wild. I mean, I loved Carl telling me stories. He had some, he had a wealth of great stories he’d tell. And they just go back, just that bit further than I go back. I mean, they go back into the cottonfields, my dad was a cotton salesman. But we didn’t go back to the fields, you know, that’s, that’s, so I love that song just because of it. Just ’cause it, there was such a close connection with Carl. And when we came to do it, we had the full band in. Then it was like, maybe we don’t need piano. So then Pete went off. And then it was like maybe we don’t need all the guitars. So I think Dave went off. And it was like, maybe we don’t need any guitars. So then, I tell a lie, the only time I got off bass was to play acoustic guitar on that track. That’s actually the only time. So that’s what happened. The whole band, we were starting calling ourselves the Dwindlers, ’cause we were like dwindling away. It was just me, and the drummer left, you know. Funnily enough it sounds the most instant, but it was probably the most worked on that. But I wanted to do it, ’cause it’s kind of a homage to Carl. And I love the song.

Aside the cover released on “Run Devil Run”, there are two other versions available on bootlegs:

  • One recorded on Oct 30, 1980, during one of the last Wings rehearsals.
  • On April 27, 1993, before the concert in Memphis, Paul met Carl Perkins for a lengthy jam session.

Last updated on September 20, 2016

Lyrics

Now let me take you to the movies Magg
So I can hold your hand
Oh well, it ain't that I don't like your house
It's just that doggone man

And that double barrel behind the door
It waits for Carl I know
Oh, climb upon ol' Becky's back
And let's ride to the picture show

I only see her once a week
And that's when my work is through
I break new ground the whole week long
With my mind set straight on you

And I've polished up my ol' horse Becky
And she looks good I know
So climb upon ol' Becky's back
And let's ride to the picture show

Now won't you let me take you to the show
So I can hold your hand
Oh, it ain't that I don't like your house
It's just that doggone man

And that double barrel behind the door
It waits for me I know
So climb upon ol' Becky's back
And let's ride to the picture show

Well, I break new ground the whole week long
With my mind set straight on you
And every time I try to smile
My heart it breaks in two

Oh, I slick myself for Saturday night
'Cause there's one thing I know
I'm a gonna take my Maggie dear
To the Western picture show

Now won't you let me take you to the show
So I can hold your hand
Oh, it ain't that I don't like your house
It's just that doggone man

And that double barrel behind the door
Lord, it waits for me I know
So climb upon ol' Becky's back
And let's ride to the picture show

Officially appears on


Run Devil Run

Official album • Released in 1999

2:12 • Studio versionA

Paul McCartney:
Acoustic guitar, Bass guitar, Producer, Vocal
Geoff Emerick:
Engineer
Mick Green:
Electric guitar
David Gilmour:
Electric guitar
Ian Paice:
Drums, Percussion
Chris Thomas:
Producer
Paul Hicks:
Engineer

Session Recording:
Mar 02, 1999
Studio:
EMI Studios, Studio Two, Abbey Road


The Legendary Songs Of Carl Perkins

Official album • Released in 2003

Studio version

Bootlegs


Tug Of War Rehearsal

Unofficial album

2:28 • Studio rehearsal

Session Recording:
Oct 30, 1980
Studio:
Pugin Hall, Tenterden, Kent, UK


Run Devil Run - Ultimate Archive Collection

Unofficial album • Released in 2015

2:12 • Studio versionA

Paul McCartney:
Acoustic guitar, Bass guitar, Producer, Vocal
Geoff Emerick:
Engineer
Mick Green:
Electric guitar
David Gilmour:
Electric guitar
Ian Paice:
Drums, Percussion
Chris Thomas:
Producer
Paul Hicks:
Engineer

Session Recording:
Mar 02, 1999
Studio:
EMI Studios, Studio Two, Abbey Road

Live performances

Paul McCartney has never played this song in concert.


Contribute!

Have you spotted an error on the page? Do you want to suggest new content? Or do you simply want to leave a comment ? Please use the form below!

Your comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.