The Paul McCartney Project

Scared

Written by Paul McCartney

Album This song officially appears on the New Official album.
Timeline This song has been officially released in 2013
Sessions This song has been recorded during the following sessions

Other songs inspired by Paul's 3rd wife, Nancy

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

My song Scared is about being scared to say “I Love You” to someone.

Paul McCartney

Scared” is a song from 2013 album “New“, not listed in the track listing of the album, and therefore considered as a “secret” song appearing last on the album:

I started writing these new ones a couple of years ago, when I was first going out with Nancy. I used to ring her up each morning and I knew because of the time difference – she was in New York – that I had a few hours to write something. Then I would ring her up and then say to her, “Do you want to hear a song?” It was a good motivation for me to write something. My song Scared is about being scared to say “I Love You” to someone. I think particularly for guys, it’s not easy to say with conviction, so I was playing with that idea.

Paul McCartney, on UK TV show Daybreak

Out of the blue, I met this girl [Nancy] and we started talking and she happened to say, ‘l knew Linda.’ So that was emotional. I wouldn’t meet, typically, many people who knew Linda, and who knew her during her cancer treatment – and Nancy did. She’s a cancer survivor herself. So it got very deep, very quickly, and it was like, ‘What the hell was that?’ And then I ran into her a couple of more times on the holiday, and we got to know each other and started dating. So the song is about that, about this depth of emotion, of but totally being scared to say or do feeling anything about it. Like a tongue-tied teenager.

Paul McCartney, interview with The Guardian, October 2013

I think it is difficult, maybe for men more than women, to just say ‘l love you’, cause it’s such a loaded statement. It brings with it everything. You don’t to say it just casually and so you’re waiting for your moment and it never comes. So I realized I was kind of scared to say ‘l love you’. Songs are a vehicle for saying what you can’t say in real life often, you know. That’s one of the great things about songs. So I just thought of ‘I’m scared to say I love you.’ Finally I played the song to her. This is me saying finally ‘l love you’. But I did have this feeling that these little birds that I wanted let them free out of a cage, but they just won’t go. They’re just too scared to fly out. Why, I don’t know. In the second verse of that song, ‘the birds’ become ‘the words’, it’s interesting what you allow yourself to do when you write a song. You can take something that you’ve been thinking and you can amplify it or you can say it in a different way, you can mask it, you can be talking about loneliness, you can invent an old lady, you can call her Eleanor Rigby, and that’s your way into that subject. It might well be something you’re feeling yourself.

Paul McCartney, interview with John Wilson, BBC Radio 4, October 2013

Well, I’m just like anybody else, man! You know? You get those moments. I don’t normally write about them; but it’s a good thing to use. I was feeling it, as well. I was newly in love with Nancy, and I was finding it a little difficult to say, ‘l love you.’ Number one, I’m a guy, and that’s a big excuse, I know, but it is a bit true to form… That song is basically about she and l, and the middle eight is about when we met. And we did exactly as I say in the song, we welled up.

Paul McCartney, interview with The Guardian, October 2013

Scared” has been produced by Giles Martin, one of the four producers who worked on the album “New“.

We tried various things, various arrangements. But to me this had to be just him on his own. Funnily enough, I was talking to Ethan [Jones, one of the other products on “New”] about a thing his dad had said to him, which was ‘When the hairs on the back of your neck stand up, you should just step back’. It’s a great end to the album.

Giles Martin

About the fact “Scared” is an hidden track, Paul has to say:

I think it’s really just a bit of fun. It’s the surprise, it’s because you can do it.

Paul McCartney, interview with Jon Holmes, XFM Breakfast, October 2013

Last updated on May 26, 2019

Lyrics

I'm scared to say I love you
Afraid to let you know
That the simplest of words won't come out of my mouth
Though I'm dying to let them go
Trying to let you know

I have to say I'm sorry
Don't feel sad for me
But the beautiful birds won't fly out of their cage
Though I'm trying to set them free
Trying to let you see, how much you mean to me

I remember the first time we met
Tears in our eyes reflecting
Something connecting from so long ago
It might have been told in the stars, maybe that's what is was
It doesn't matter because

I'm still too scared to tell you
Afraid to let you see see
That the simplest of words won't come out of my mouth
Though I'm dying to set them free
Trying to let you see, how much it means to me
How much you mean to me
How much you mean to me now

Officially appears on


New

Official album • Released in 2013

2:47 • Studio versionA • Hidden track

Paul McCartney:
Piano, Vocals
Giles Martin:
Producer
Kevin Mills:
Assistant mixing engineer (?)
Sam Okell:
Recording engineer (?)
Mark 'Spike' Stent:
Mixing engineer
Geoff Swan:
Assistant mixing engineer (?)
Adam Miller:
Assistant recording engineer (?)
John Prestage:
Assistant recording engineer (?)
Laurence Anslow:
Assistant recording engineer (?)
Tom Bailey:
Assistant recording engineer (?)

Session Recording:
February - March 2013
Studio:
AIR Studios, London, UK

Session Mixing:
April 2013
Studio:
Henson Recording Studios, Los Angeles


New (Japan Edition)

Official album • Released in 2013

2:47 • Studio versionA • Hidden track

Paul McCartney:
Piano, Vocals
Giles Martin:
Producer
Kevin Mills:
Assistant mixing engineer (?)
Sam Okell:
Recording engineer (?)
Mark 'Spike' Stent:
Mixing engineer
Geoff Swan:
Assistant mixing engineer (?)
Adam Miller:
Assistant recording engineer (?)
John Prestage:
Assistant recording engineer (?)
Laurence Anslow:
Assistant recording engineer (?)
Tom Bailey:
Assistant recording engineer (?)

Session Recording:
February - March 2013
Studio:
AIR Studios, London, UK

Session Mixing:
April 2013
Studio:
Henson Recording Studios, Los Angeles


New (Deluxe Edition)

Official album • Released in 2013

2:47 • Studio versionA • Hidden track

Paul McCartney:
Piano, Vocals
Giles Martin:
Producer
Kevin Mills:
Assistant mixing engineer (?)
Sam Okell:
Recording engineer (?)
Mark 'Spike' Stent:
Mixing engineer
Geoff Swan:
Assistant mixing engineer (?)
Adam Miller:
Assistant recording engineer (?)
John Prestage:
Assistant recording engineer (?)
Laurence Anslow:
Assistant recording engineer (?)
Tom Bailey:
Assistant recording engineer (?)

Session Recording:
February - March 2013
Studio:
AIR Studios, London, UK

Session Mixing:
April 2013
Studio:
Henson Recording Studios, Los Angeles


New (Collector's Edition)

Official album • Released in 2014

2:47 • Studio versionA

Paul McCartney:
Piano, Vocals
Giles Martin:
Producer
Kevin Mills:
Assistant mixing engineer (?)
Sam Okell:
Recording engineer (?)
Mark 'Spike' Stent:
Mixing engineer
Geoff Swan:
Assistant mixing engineer (?)
Adam Miller:
Assistant recording engineer (?)
John Prestage:
Assistant recording engineer (?)
Laurence Anslow:
Assistant recording engineer (?)
Tom Bailey:
Assistant recording engineer (?)

Session Recording:
February - March 2013
Studio:
AIR Studios, London, UK

Session Mixing:
April 2013
Studio:
Henson Recording Studios, Los Angeles


New (2014 Japan Tour Edition)

Official album • Released in 2014

2:47 • Studio versionA • Hidden track

Paul McCartney:
Piano, Vocals
Giles Martin:
Producer
Kevin Mills:
Assistant mixing engineer (?)
Sam Okell:
Recording engineer (?)
Mark 'Spike' Stent:
Mixing engineer
Geoff Swan:
Assistant mixing engineer (?)
Adam Miller:
Assistant recording engineer (?)
John Prestage:
Assistant recording engineer (?)
Laurence Anslow:
Assistant recording engineer (?)
Tom Bailey:
Assistant recording engineer (?)

Session Recording:
February - March 2013
Studio:
AIR Studios, London, UK

Session Mixing:
April 2013
Studio:
Henson Recording Studios, Los Angeles

Bootlegs


New - Ultimate Archive Collection

Unofficial album • Released in 2015

2:47 • Studio versionA

Paul McCartney:
Piano, Vocals
Giles Martin:
Producer
Kevin Mills:
Assistant mixing engineer (?)
Sam Okell:
Recording engineer (?)
Mark 'Spike' Stent:
Mixing engineer
Geoff Swan:
Assistant mixing engineer (?)
Adam Miller:
Assistant recording engineer (?)
John Prestage:
Assistant recording engineer (?)
Laurence Anslow:
Assistant recording engineer (?)
Tom Bailey:
Assistant recording engineer (?)

Session Recording:
February - March 2013
Studio:
AIR Studios, London, UK

Session Mixing:
April 2013
Studio:
Henson Recording Studios, Los Angeles

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.