The Paul McCartney Project

People Want Peace

Written by Paul McCartney

Album This song officially appears on the Egypt Station Official album.
Timeline This song has been officially released in 2018
Sessions This song has been recorded during the following sessions

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Song facts

People Want Peace” is a track from 2018 album “Egypt Station“, inspired by McCartney’s experience of performing in Israel in 2008. From “Words Between The Tracks” YouTube series:

We had played a gig in Israel quite a few years ago, and I wanted to go to Palestine before I went to Israel, because I was very aware of the political situation there. So I didn’t want to just look like I was ignoring Palestine playing in Israel, although that was where the date was, the gig.

So I made arrangements to go into Palestine across the border, and go to a little music school and shake hands with the kids, and hang out and listen to them playing some music. Just to show solidarity with the Palestinian people.

And then when I came back into Israel I then met with some cool people from a group called One Voice, a political group, kind of thing, a movement. And we ended up wearing their badges on our show in Tel Aviv.

So the whole idea was a peace mission, really, because these kids were great. I say kids, they were kind of young adults. And I’d say to them, “what is it? What do you want to do, you know?”. They say “All we want to do is just live in peace, raise our families, you know, and be able to just get on with our lives in peace”.

And so that tied in with something that when I was a kid. I’d asked my dad and said  – you know, we were seeing all the wars and stuff, on the newspapers, on TV and so I’d said to him “what is it? You know, do people want peace or do they just like to fight?”. And he sort-of looked at me, very quietly said “No, no, son, people want peace. It’s the politicians and the leaders who get into wars. It’s not the people”. So that always struck me as a great phrase.

Paul McCartney

From MOJO, October 2018:

People Want Peace is his latest attempt to write an ecumenical hymn-cum-anthem, partly inspired by McCartney’s experiences around the controversial decision to play a gig in Tel Aviv in 2008, which some friends had counselled him against. “They said ‘You can’t go’. The trouble is, when you say that to me, it makes me wanna go. I don’t like being told what to do“. He performed while endorsing One Voice, a global initiative supporting Israeli and Palestinian activists who seek a negotiated two-state resolution to the conflict. “It was something my dad had said when I was a kid“, he say. “‘The people want peace, it’s the politicians who mess it up.’ And that’s held pretty true.

Each track of “Egypt Station” has been given individual artwork that was first published on Twitter on August 14, 2018

Last updated on September 9, 2018

Lyrics

Ladies and gentlemen
I'm standing before you
With something important to say
With some trepidation I crave your attention
But I'm not gonna to let anything
Get in my way

The message is simple, it's straight from my heart
And I know that you've heard it before
But what does it matter
We're in it together
And I'm not quitting while people are crying for more

People want peace
People want peace
A simple relief from their suffering
People want peace

People want peace

Nothing in life is as sad
As a lonely soul searching for peace
Only to find disappointment is waiting
Behind every door that we open
Every catch we release

Brothers and sisters
I beg you to listen
I know that it isn't too late
For we are the people
The voices of freedom
And we're all perfectly clear that we
Don't want to wait

People want peace
People want peace
A simple relief from their suffering
People want peace

People want peace

People want peace
People want peace
People want peace
People want peace

Officially appears on


Egypt Station

Official album • Released in 2018

2:59 • Studio versionA

Paul McCartney:
12 string acoustic guitar, Acoustic guitar, Ankle bells, Bass, Co-producer, Drums, Electric guitar, Harpsichord, Percussion, Piano, Vocals
Greg Kurstin:
, Backing vocals, Claps, Engineering, Moog bass, Piano, Producer, Prophet synth, Upright tack piano
Steve Orchard:
Engineering
Mark ‘Spike’ Stent:
Mixing
Michael Freeman:
Mixing assistant
Alex Pasco:
Backing vocals, Claps, Engineering
Julian Burg:
Backing vocals, Claps, Engineering
Matt Tuggle:
Backing vocals, Claps, Engineering assistant
Collin Kadlec:
Backing vocals, Claps, Engineering assistant
Brad Giroux:
Engineering assistant
Derek Stockwell:
Mixing assistant
Al Schmitt:
Engineering
Steve Genewick:
Engineering assistant
Inara George:
Backing vocals
Vanessa Freebairn-Smith:
Cello

Session Recording:
Unknown dates
Studio:
Henson Recording Studios, Los Angeles

Session Mixing:
2018 ?
Studio:
Henson Recording Studios, Los Angeles


Egypt Station (Deluxe edition)

Official album • Released in 2018

2:59 • Studio versionA

Paul McCartney:
12 string acoustic guitar, Acoustic guitar, Ankle bells, Bass, Co-producer, Drums, Electric guitar, Harpsichord, Percussion, Piano, Vocals
Greg Kurstin:
, Backing vocals, Claps, Engineering, Moog bass, Piano, Producer, Prophet synth, Upright tack piano
Steve Orchard:
Engineering
Mark ‘Spike’ Stent:
Mixing
Michael Freeman:
Mixing assistant
Alex Pasco:
Backing vocals, Claps, Engineering
Julian Burg:
Backing vocals, Claps, Engineering
Matt Tuggle:
Backing vocals, Claps, Engineering assistant
Collin Kadlec:
Backing vocals, Claps, Engineering assistant
Brad Giroux:
Engineering assistant
Derek Stockwell:
Mixing assistant
Al Schmitt:
Engineering
Steve Genewick:
Engineering assistant
Inara George:
Backing vocals
Vanessa Freebairn-Smith:
Cello

Session Recording:
Unknown dates
Studio:
Henson Recording Studios, Los Angeles

Session Mixing:
2018 ?
Studio:
Henson Recording Studios, Los Angeles

Live performances

Paul McCartney has never played this song in concert.


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