The Paul McCartney Project

Say Say Say

Album This song officially appears on the Pipes Of Peace Official album.
,
Timeline This song has been officially released in 1983
Timeline This song has been written (or started being written) in 1981 (Paul McCartney was 39 years old)

Related sessions

This song has been recorded during the following studio sessions




Mixing "Say Say Say"

Feb 15, 1983

Other collaborations with Michael Jackson


The Girl Is Mine

Officially appears on The Girl Is Mine


The Man

Officially appears on Pipes Of Peace

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

Say Say Say” is a track from 1983 album “Pipes Of Peace“.

Paul McCartney about the origin of Say Say Say:

He (Michael) rang me up, and I didn’t believe it was him, so I said, “Who’s this?” He said, ‘Michael’. ‘Are you sure… Michael who?!’. Anyway, we had a joke about that kind of thing, and he said, ‘Yeah, I’d like to come over and write with you’, so I said great. So he came over to England and we just sat down. I thought, well, it’s not easy to just sit down with anyone you don’t know and just write, start songwriting because you’ve got to get the chemistry right. But I thought, it is Michael – you know, I’ll just try! If it doesn’t work, we’ll just throw it away …

About the 2015 remix:

And now, 32 years after the original release, fans will have a fresh rush of excitement with a completely new mix of the track, prominently featuring alternative vocals from Paul and the late Michael which have never before been seen the light of day.

And to celebrate the remix of ‘Say Say Say’, a new upbeat dance video has been created and was launched exclusively on Facebook today (Tuesday October 6th). Directed by the choreographer and performance artist Ryan Heffington – recently noted for his choreography work on Sia’s ‘Chandelier’ promo – and filmed in LA, the video follows a teenage boy on a journey through his neighborhood. The boy’s sense of optimism is infectious as he brings joy and stunning dance sequences to those he encounters on his travels.

“Say Say Say [2015 remix]” music video

“Say Say Say [2015 remix]” music video – behind the scenes

Since their initial collaboration together on “The Girl Is Mine” in 1982, Michael has gone on to become one of the world’s biggest stars, with worldwide hits like “Billie Jean” and “Beat It” to his name. Paul was full of praise for his new song writing partner: “He’s great, he’s got a great voice, he’s got it really, so he’s good to be around, and he’s inspiring… Michael rang me up and said what are we going to do? He said ‘Let’s make hits!’ So I said Yeah, OK, great, well come on over. He wanted to write with me, I think he was getting into a writing thing himself. These last couple of years he’s written masses of stuff. So we sat down for an afternoon, and ‘Say, Say, Say’ was the first thing that we came up with, and we really just had fun… It’s funny really, because sometimes you think well, you’ve got to be careful about musical chemistry, but occasionally, I just think — oh well, let’s just see what happens. So I sat around with a guitar plonking chords, and came up with the original idea of the song, and Michael added and filled in a lot, a lot of words, and he had some ideas for arrangements and stuff. So it was quite a nice team effort, and it was a good change for me to work with someone like Michael, because he’s hot.

From Club Sandwich N° 31, 1983

Last updated on February 23, 2020

Lyrics

Say, say, say what you want
But don't play games, with my affection.
Take, take, take, what you need
But don't leave me with no direction

All alone I sit home by the phone
waiting for you baby
Through the years how can you stand to hear
My pleading for you dear?
You know I'm crying
Oo oo oo oo

(Now) go go go, where you want
But don't leave me here forever
You you you, stay away
So long girl I see you never.

What can I do girl, to get through to you?
'Cause I love you baby
standing here baptised in all my tears,
baby through the years
You know I'm crying
Oo oo oo oo

You never ever worry, and you never shed a tear
You're saying that my love ain't real
Just look at my face, these tears ain't drying.

You you you can never say
That I'm not the one who really loves you
I pray, pray, pray everyday
That you'll see things girl, like I do.

What can I do girl, to get through to you?
'Cause I love you baby
Standing here baptised in all my tears
Baby through the years, you know I'm crying
Oo oo oo oo

Say say say…

Officially appears on


Pipes Of Peace

Official album • Released in 1983

3:56 • Studio versionA

Paul McCartney :
Arrangement, Backing vocals, Electric guitar (?), Electric piano (?), Percussion (?), Synthesizers (?), Vocals
Linda McCartney :
Backing vocals
Michael Jackson :
Backing vocals, Vocals
Eric Stewart :
Backing vocals
George Martin :
Arrangement, Producer
Geoff Emerick :
Mixing engineer, Recording engineer
Jon Jacobs :
Mixing engineer assistant, Recording engineer assistant
Jerry Hey :
Horns
Nathan Watts :
Bass
Bill Wolfer :
Keyboards, Synthesizers
David Williams :
Electric guitar
Chris Smith :
Harmonica
Ricky Lawson :
Drums
Ernie Watts :
Horns
Gary E. Grant :
Horns
Gary Herbig :
Horns

Session Recording:
May 1981
Studio :
AIR Studios, London, UK ; Odyssey Studios, London, UK

Session Recording:
April 1982
Studio :
Cherokee Studios, Los Angeles, USA ; Sigma Sound Studios, New York City, USA

Session Mixing:
Feb 15, 1983
Studio :
AIR Studios, London, UK

Credits & recording details courtesy of Luca Perasi • Buy Paul McCartney: Recording Sessions (1969-2013) on Amazon


Say Say Say / Ode To A Koala Bear

7" Single • Released in 1983

3:55 • Studio versionA

Paul McCartney :
Arrangement, Backing vocals, Electric guitar (?), Electric piano (?), Percussion (?), Synthesizers (?), Vocals
Linda McCartney :
Backing vocals
Michael Jackson :
Backing vocals, Vocals
Eric Stewart :
Backing vocals
George Martin :
Arrangement, Producer
Geoff Emerick :
Mixing engineer, Recording engineer
Jon Jacobs :
Mixing engineer assistant, Recording engineer assistant
Jerry Hey :
Horns
Nathan Watts :
Bass
Bill Wolfer :
Keyboards, Synthesizers
David Williams :
Electric guitar
Chris Smith :
Harmonica
Ricky Lawson :
Drums
Ernie Watts :
Horns
Gary E. Grant :
Horns
Gary Herbig :
Horns

Session Recording:
May 1981
Studio :
AIR Studios, London, UK ; Odyssey Studios, London, UK

Session Recording:
April 1982
Studio :
Cherokee Studios, Los Angeles, USA ; Sigma Sound Studios, New York City, USA

Session Mixing:
Feb 15, 1983
Studio :
AIR Studios, London, UK

Credits & recording details courtesy of Luca Perasi • Buy Paul McCartney: Recording Sessions (1969-2013) on Amazon


Say Say Say / Ode To A Koala Bear (Australian version)

7" Single • Released in 1983

3:55 • Studio versionA

Paul McCartney :
Arrangement, Backing vocals, Electric guitar (?), Electric piano (?), Percussion (?), Synthesizers (?), Vocals
Linda McCartney :
Backing vocals
Michael Jackson :
Backing vocals, Vocals
Eric Stewart :
Backing vocals
George Martin :
Arrangement, Producer
Geoff Emerick :
Mixing engineer, Recording engineer
Jon Jacobs :
Mixing engineer assistant, Recording engineer assistant
Jerry Hey :
Horns
Nathan Watts :
Bass
Bill Wolfer :
Keyboards, Synthesizers
David Williams :
Electric guitar
Chris Smith :
Harmonica
Ricky Lawson :
Drums
Ernie Watts :
Horns
Gary E. Grant :
Horns
Gary Herbig :
Horns

Session Recording:
May 1981
Studio :
AIR Studios, London, UK ; Odyssey Studios, London, UK

Session Recording:
April 1982
Studio :
Cherokee Studios, Los Angeles, USA ; Sigma Sound Studios, New York City, USA

Session Mixing:
Feb 15, 1983
Studio :
AIR Studios, London, UK

Credits & recording details courtesy of Luca Perasi • Buy Paul McCartney: Recording Sessions (1969-2013) on Amazon


Say Say Say

12" Single • Released in 1983

5:40 • Studio versionA1 • 12" Remix

Paul McCartney :
Arrangement, Backing vocals, Electric guitar (?), Electric piano (?), Percussion (?), Synthesizers (?), Vocals
Linda McCartney :
Backing vocals
Michael Jackson :
Backing vocals, Vocals
Eric Stewart :
Backing vocals
George Martin :
Arrangement, Producer
Geoff Emerick :
Mixing engineer, Recording engineer
Jon Jacobs :
Mixing engineer assistant, Recording engineer assistant
Jerry Hey :
Horns
Nathan Watts :
Bass
Bill Wolfer :
Keyboards, Synthesizers
David Williams :
Electric guitar
Chris Smith :
Harmonica
Ricky Lawson :
Drums
Ernie Watts :
Horns
Gary E. Grant :
Horns
Gary Herbig :
Horns
John Benitez :
Remixing

Session Recording:
May 1981
Studio :
AIR Studios, London, UK ; Odyssey Studios, London, UK

Session Recording:
April 1982
Studio :
Cherokee Studios, Los Angeles, USA ; Sigma Sound Studios, New York City, USA

Session Mixing:
Feb 15, 1983
Studio :
AIR Studios, London, UK

Credits & recording details courtesy of Luca Perasi • Buy Paul McCartney: Recording Sessions (1969-2013) on Amazon


Say Say Say

12" Single • Released in 1983

7:00 • Studio versionA2 • Instrumental version

Paul McCartney :
Arrangement, Electric guitar (?), Electric piano (?), Percussion (?), Synthesizers (?)
George Martin :
Arrangement, Producer
Geoff Emerick :
Mixing engineer, Recording engineer
Jon Jacobs :
Mixing engineer assistant, Recording engineer assistant
Jerry Hey :
Horns
Nathan Watts :
Bass
Bill Wolfer :
Keyboards, Synthesizers
David Williams :
Electric guitar
Chris Smith :
Harmonica
Ricky Lawson :
Drums
Ernie Watts :
Horns
Gary E. Grant :
Horns
Gary Herbig :
Horns
John Benitez :
Remixing

Session Recording:
May 1981
Studio :
AIR Studios, London, UK ; Odyssey Studios, London, UK

Session Recording:
April 1982
Studio :
Cherokee Studios, Los Angeles, USA ; Sigma Sound Studios, New York City, USA

Session Mixing:
Feb 15, 1983
Studio :
AIR Studios, London, UK

Credits & recording details courtesy of Luca Perasi • Buy Paul McCartney: Recording Sessions (1969-2013) on Amazon


All The Best! (UK version)

Official album • Released in 1987

3:55 • Studio versionA

Paul McCartney :
Arrangement, Backing vocals, Electric guitar (?), Electric piano (?), Percussion (?), Synthesizers (?), Vocals
Linda McCartney :
Backing vocals
Michael Jackson :
Backing vocals, Vocals
Eric Stewart :
Backing vocals
George Martin :
Arrangement, Producer
Geoff Emerick :
Mixing engineer, Recording engineer
Jon Jacobs :
Mixing engineer assistant, Recording engineer assistant
Jerry Hey :
Horns
Nathan Watts :
Bass
Bill Wolfer :
Keyboards, Synthesizers
David Williams :
Electric guitar
Chris Smith :
Harmonica
Ricky Lawson :
Drums
Ernie Watts :
Horns
Gary E. Grant :
Horns
Gary Herbig :
Horns

Session Recording:
May 1981
Studio :
AIR Studios, London, UK ; Odyssey Studios, London, UK

Session Recording:
April 1982
Studio :
Cherokee Studios, Los Angeles, USA ; Sigma Sound Studios, New York City, USA

Session Mixing:
Feb 15, 1983
Studio :
AIR Studios, London, UK

Credits & recording details courtesy of Luca Perasi • Buy Paul McCartney: Recording Sessions (1969-2013) on Amazon


All The Best! (US version)

Official album • Released in 1987

3:55 • Studio versionA

Paul McCartney :
Arrangement, Backing vocals, Electric guitar (?), Electric piano (?), Percussion (?), Synthesizers (?), Vocals
Linda McCartney :
Backing vocals
Michael Jackson :
Backing vocals, Vocals
Eric Stewart :
Backing vocals
George Martin :
Arrangement, Producer
Geoff Emerick :
Mixing engineer, Recording engineer
Jon Jacobs :
Mixing engineer assistant, Recording engineer assistant
Jerry Hey :
Horns
Nathan Watts :
Bass
Bill Wolfer :
Keyboards, Synthesizers
David Williams :
Electric guitar
Chris Smith :
Harmonica
Ricky Lawson :
Drums
Ernie Watts :
Horns
Gary E. Grant :
Horns
Gary Herbig :
Horns

Session Recording:
May 1981
Studio :
AIR Studios, London, UK ; Odyssey Studios, London, UK

Session Recording:
April 1982
Studio :
Cherokee Studios, Los Angeles, USA ; Sigma Sound Studios, New York City, USA

Session Mixing:
Feb 15, 1983
Studio :
AIR Studios, London, UK

Credits & recording details courtesy of Luca Perasi • Buy Paul McCartney: Recording Sessions (1969-2013) on Amazon


All The Best! (Box Set)

Official album • Released in 1987

3:53 • Studio version


Pipes Of Peace (1993)

Official album • Released in 1993

Studio versionA1993 • 1993 remaster

Paul McCartney :
Arrangement, Backing vocals, Electric guitar (?), Electric piano (?), Percussion (?), Synthesizers (?), Vocals
Linda McCartney :
Backing vocals
Michael Jackson :
Backing vocals, Vocals
Eric Stewart :
Backing vocals
George Martin :
Arrangement, Producer
Geoff Emerick :
Mixing engineer, Recording engineer
Jon Jacobs :
Mixing engineer assistant, Recording engineer assistant
Jerry Hey :
Horns
Nathan Watts :
Bass
Bill Wolfer :
Keyboards, Synthesizers
David Williams :
Electric guitar
Chris Smith :
Harmonica
Ricky Lawson :
Drums
Ernie Watts :
Horns
Gary E. Grant :
Horns
Gary Herbig :
Horns

Session Recording:
May 1981
Studio :
AIR Studios, London, UK ; Odyssey Studios, London, UK

Session Recording:
April 1982
Studio :
Cherokee Studios, Los Angeles, USA ; Sigma Sound Studios, New York City, USA

Session Mixing:
Feb 15, 1983
Studio :
AIR Studios, London, UK

Credits & recording details courtesy of Luca Perasi • Buy Paul McCartney: Recording Sessions (1969-2013) on Amazon


Pipes Of Peace - Archive Collection

Official album • Released in 2015

3:56 • Studio versionA.2015 • 2015 remaster

Paul McCartney :
Arrangement, Backing vocals, Electric guitar (?), Electric piano (?), Percussion (?), Synthesizers (?), Vocals
Linda McCartney :
Backing vocals
Michael Jackson :
Backing vocals, Vocals
Eric Stewart :
Backing vocals
George Martin :
Arrangement, Producer
Geoff Emerick :
Mixing engineer, Recording engineer
Jon Jacobs :
Mixing engineer assistant, Recording engineer assistant
Jerry Hey :
Horns
Nathan Watts :
Bass
Bill Wolfer :
Keyboards, Synthesizers
David Williams :
Electric guitar
Chris Smith :
Harmonica
Ricky Lawson :
Drums
Ernie Watts :
Horns
Gary E. Grant :
Horns
Gary Herbig :
Horns
Sam Okell :
Remastering
Alex Wharton :
Remastering

Session Recording:
May 1981
Studio :
AIR Studios, London, UK ; Odyssey Studios, London, UK

Session Recording:
April 1982
Studio :
Cherokee Studios, Los Angeles, USA ; Sigma Sound Studios, New York City, USA

Session Mixing:
Feb 15, 1983
Studio :
AIR Studios, London, UK

Credits & recording details courtesy of Luca Perasi • Buy Paul McCartney: Recording Sessions (1969-2013) on Amazon


Bootlegs


MoMac's Hidden Tracks Vol.17

Unofficial album

5:37 • Studio version


MoMac's Hidden Tracks Vol.17

Unofficial album

6:58 • Studio version


Tug Of Peace

Unofficial album

5:35 • Outtake • Extended version - John 'Jellybean' Benitez


Tug Of Peace

Unofficial album

6:56 • Outtake


B-Sides Complete Vol. 5

Unofficial album • Released in 2000

6:58 • Studio versionA

Paul McCartney :
Arrangement, Backing vocals, Electric guitar (?), Electric piano (?), Percussion (?), Synthesizers (?), Vocals
Linda McCartney :
Backing vocals
Michael Jackson :
Backing vocals, Vocals
Eric Stewart :
Backing vocals
George Martin :
Arrangement, Producer
Geoff Emerick :
Mixing engineer, Recording engineer
Jon Jacobs :
Mixing engineer assistant, Recording engineer assistant
Jerry Hey :
Horns
Nathan Watts :
Bass
Bill Wolfer :
Keyboards, Synthesizers
David Williams :
Electric guitar
Chris Smith :
Harmonica
Ricky Lawson :
Drums
Ernie Watts :
Horns
Gary E. Grant :
Horns
Gary Herbig :
Horns

Session Recording:
May 1981
Studio :
AIR Studios, London, UK ; Odyssey Studios, London, UK

Session Recording:
April 1982
Studio :
Cherokee Studios, Los Angeles, USA ; Sigma Sound Studios, New York City, USA

Session Mixing:
Feb 15, 1983
Studio :
AIR Studios, London, UK

Credits & recording details courtesy of Luca Perasi • Buy Paul McCartney: Recording Sessions (1969-2013) on Amazon


Films


Say Say Say

1983 • For Paul McCartney • Directed by Bob Giraldi

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.