The Paul McCartney Project

Wanderlust

Written by Paul McCartney

Album This song officially appears on the Tug Of War Official album.
Timeline This song has been officially released in 1982
Timeline This song has been written (or started being written) in 1980 (Paul McCartney was 38 years old)

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Song facts

Wanderlust” is a song from 1982 album “Tug Of War“.

We were recording in the Virgin Islands for the album which became London Town. We had hired a mobile studio and put it on a boat and it was a holiday with the kids and everything. During that time we were staying on a boat with a very macho captain who had made his fortune in condominiums.

We fell out with him, and I said “Who wants to stay on your lousy tub?” and we went on to a trimaran called Wanderlust. So Wanderlust became associated with freedom, breaking away from oppression – let’s get out of here. Years later I wrote this song based on this experience.

Paul McCartney – From the “Give My Regards To Broad Street” book, Pavilion Books, 1984

Is “Wanderlust” an emotional song?

It’s actually a personal experience. What happened was that we were recording (we went out to the Virgin Islands to record an album called ‘London Town‘) and we were on boats, in a little bay recording for a month. The captain of the boat that we were on was a little, sort of, heavier than the other captains – you know, he sort of took it a little more seriously – and at some stage we had a sort of argument with him, and I sort of said, “You know, we don’t need all this aggro stuff”, and we wanted to get off onto this other boat that happened to be in the harbour. These people had said we could come on this, and this boat happened to be called “Wanderlust”, so it became like a symbol of freedom to me, this catamaran, as it was, called “Wanderlust”. We only actually stayed one night on it, but it was like, after this hassling that this other fellow had given us, to get onto this boat was like freedom, you know, so the song for me is actually just carrying on the idea. You know, just head us out to sea and take us away from all these headaches, and just wanderlust kind of free.

Paul McCartney – From an interview for Club Sandwich, 1982

Paul McCartney wanted George Harrison to add a guitar solo to the song “Wanderlust“. He, his wife Linda, George Martin (producer of the album) and Denny Laine went visiting George at his house, Friar Park, where he had located his personal studio (named FPSHOT – Friar Park Studio, Henley-On-Thames). Before working on “Wanderlust“, George Harrison asked Paul to record some backing vocals for his song “All Those Years Ago“. In the end, the guitar overdub for “Wanderlust” was never recorded. And instead of a guitar solo, McCartney decided to use a brass ensemble.

I enjoyed doing that track, and the brass ensemble was great; we did that back in England. They were fabulous, the Philip Jones Brass Ensemble. I think, listening to the record again recently, I didn’t use the brass ensemble enough. They could have done more; they could have been more often in the song, instead of just the solo.

Paul McCartney – from the Tug Of War Archive Collection, 2015
Paul’s handwritten lyrics for Wanderlust – From the “Tug Of War Archive Collection” @ 2015 MPL Communications Inc

Wanderlust” was re-recorded for the McCartney’s 1984 movie, “Give My Regards To Broad Street“ (still with the Philip Jones Brass Ensemble). The complete version lasting 4:07 appeared on the CD version of the soundtrack, while a shortened 2:48 version was released on the LP version.

Last updated on May 9, 2020

Lyrics

Light out Wanderlust
Head us out to sea
Captain says there'll be a bust
This one's not for me

Take us from the dark
Out where we can see
Captain's out to make his mark
This one's not to be

Light out Wanderlust
Help us to be free
Light out Wanderlust
Do it just for me
Wanderlust

Oh where did I go wrong my love?
What petty crime was I found guilty of?
What better time to find a brand new day?
Oh - Wanderlust away

Light out Wanderlust
Help us to be free
Light out Wanderlust
Do it just for me
Wanderlust

Captain's out to make his mark
This one's not to be

Light out Wanderlust
Head us out to sea
Captain says there'll be a bust
This one's not for me

COUNTER MELODY
Oh where did I go wrong my love?
What petty crime was I found guilty of?
What better time to find a brand new day?
Oh Wanderlust away

Dropping a line
Maybe this time
It's Wanderlust for me

Officially appears on


Tug Of War

Official album • Released in 1982

3:49 • Studio versionA

Paul McCartney :
Acoustic guitar, Arrangement, Backing vocals, Bass, Piano, Vocals
Linda McCartney :
Backing vocals
Denny Laine :
Bass
Ringo Starr :
Drums
Eric Stewart :
Backing vocals
George Martin :
Arrangement, Producer
Geoff Emerick :
Mixing engineer, Recording engineer
Jon Jacobs :
Assistant mixing engineer, Assistant recording engineer
Keith Harvey :
Cello
Adrian Sheppard :
Drums, Percussion
Philip Jones :
Trumpet (?)
John Underwood :
Viola
Patrick Halling :
Violin
Dennis Vigay :
Cello
Laurie Lewis :
Violin
Galina Solodchin :
Violin
Michael Rennie :
Violin
George Turnlund :
Viola
Ken Essex :
Viola
Alexander Kok :
Cello
Peter Willison :
Cello
Alan Peters :
Violin
David Ogden :
Violin
Jeff Bryant :
French horn (?)
Philip Jones Brass Ensemble :
Brass instruments
Paul Archibald :
Trumpet (?)
James Watson :
Trumpet (?)
Michael Thompson :
French horn (?)
John Pigneguy :
French horn (?)
Raymond Premu :
Bass trombone (?)

Session Recording:
Jan 02, 1981
Studio :
Parkgate Studio, Sussex, UK

Session Recording:
July 1981
Studio :
AIR Studios, London

Session Mixing:
Oct 01, 1981
Studio :
AIR Studios, London, UK


Give My Regards To Broad Street (CD version)

Official album • Released in 1984

4:07 • Studio versionB

Paul McCartney :
Acoustic guitar, Vocal
Ringo Starr :
Drums
George Martin :
Producer
Philip Jones :
Trumpet
Stuart Breed :
Assistant engineer (?)
John Kelly :
Recording engineer (?)
Jeff Bryant :
French horn
Philip Jones Brass Ensemble :
Brass instruments
Paul Archibald :
Trumpet
James Watson :
Trumpet
Michael Thompson :
French horn
John Pigneguy :
French horn
Raymond Premu :
Bass trombone

Session Recording:
February - March 1983 ?
Studio :
AIR Studios, London, UK


Give My Regards To Broad Street (LP version)

Official album • Released in 1984

2:48 • Studio versionB1

Paul McCartney :
Acoustic guitar, Vocal
Ringo Starr :
Drums
George Martin :
Producer
Philip Jones :
Trumpet
Stuart Breed :
Assistant engineer (?)
John Kelly :
Recording engineer (?)
Jeff Bryant :
French horn
Philip Jones Brass Ensemble :
Brass instruments
Paul Archibald :
Trumpet
James Watson :
Trumpet
Michael Thompson :
French horn
John Pigneguy :
French horn
Raymond Premu :
Bass trombone

Session Recording:
February - March 1983 ?
Studio :
AIR Studios, London, UK


Give My Regards To Broad Street (1993)

Official album • Released in 1993

4:07 • Studio versionB

Paul McCartney :
Acoustic guitar, Vocal
Ringo Starr :
Drums
George Martin :
Producer
Philip Jones :
Trumpet
Stuart Breed :
Assistant engineer (?)
John Kelly :
Recording engineer (?)
Jeff Bryant :
French horn
Philip Jones Brass Ensemble :
Brass instruments
Paul Archibald :
Trumpet
James Watson :
Trumpet
Michael Thompson :
French horn
John Pigneguy :
French horn
Raymond Premu :
Bass trombone

Session Recording:
February - March 1983 ?
Studio :
AIR Studios, London, UK


Tug Of War (1993)

Official album • Released in 1993

3:49 • Studio versionA1993 • 1993 remaster

Paul McCartney :
Acoustic guitar, Arrangement, Backing vocals, Bass, Piano, Vocals
Linda McCartney :
Backing vocals
Denny Laine :
Bass
Ringo Starr :
Drums
Eric Stewart :
Backing vocals
George Martin :
Arrangement, Producer
Geoff Emerick :
Mixing engineer, Recording engineer
Jon Jacobs :
Assistant mixing engineer, Assistant recording engineer
Keith Harvey :
Cello
Adrian Sheppard :
Drums, Percussion
Philip Jones :
Trumpet (?)
John Underwood :
Viola
Patrick Halling :
Violin
Dennis Vigay :
Cello
Laurie Lewis :
Violin
Galina Solodchin :
Violin
Michael Rennie :
Violin
George Turnlund :
Viola
Ken Essex :
Viola
Alexander Kok :
Cello
Peter Willison :
Cello
Alan Peters :
Violin
David Ogden :
Violin
Jeff Bryant :
French horn (?)
Philip Jones Brass Ensemble :
Brass instruments
Paul Archibald :
Trumpet (?)
James Watson :
Trumpet (?)
Michael Thompson :
French horn (?)
John Pigneguy :
French horn (?)
Raymond Premu :
Bass trombone (?)

Session Recording:
Jan 02, 1981
Studio :
Parkgate Studio, Sussex, UK

Session Recording:
July 1981
Studio :
AIR Studios, London

Session Mixing:
Oct 01, 1981
Studio :
AIR Studios, London, UK


Tug Of War - Archive Collection

Official album • Released in 2015

3:49 • Studio versionC • 2015 remix

Paul McCartney :
Acoustic guitar, Arrangement, Backing vocals, Bass, Piano, Remixing, Vocals
Linda McCartney :
Backing vocals
Denny Laine :
Bass
Ringo Starr :
Drums
Eric Stewart :
Backing vocals
George Martin :
Arrangement, Producer
Geoff Emerick :
Recording engineer
Jon Jacobs :
Assistant recording engineer
Keith Harvey :
Cello
Adrian Sheppard :
Drums, Percussion
Philip Jones :
Trumpet (?)
John Underwood :
Viola
Patrick Halling :
Violin
Dennis Vigay :
Cello
Laurie Lewis :
Violin
Galina Solodchin :
Violin
Michael Rennie :
Violin
George Turnlund :
Viola
Ken Essex :
Viola
Alexander Kok :
Cello
Peter Willison :
Cello
Alan Peters :
Violin
David Ogden :
Violin
Jeff Bryant :
French horn (?)
Alex Wharton :
Mastering
Steve Orchard :
Remixing
Philip Jones Brass Ensemble :
Brass instruments
Paul Archibald :
Trumpet (?)
James Watson :
Trumpet (?)
Michael Thompson :
French horn (?)
John Pigneguy :
French horn (?)
Raymond Premu :
Bass trombone (?)

Session Recording:
Jan 02, 1981
Studio :
Parkgate Studio, Sussex, UK

Session Recording:
July 1981
Studio :
AIR Studios, London

Session Mixing:
Mar 02, 2015
Studio :
Hog Hill Studio, Rye, UK


Tug Of War - Archive Collection

Official album • Released in 2015

1:44 • DemoD

Alex Wharton :
Mastering

Session Recording & mixing:
August 1980
Studio :
Rude Studio, Campbeltown, Scotland


Tug Of War - Archive Collection

Official album • Released in 2015

3:51 • Studio versionA

Paul McCartney :
Acoustic guitar, Arrangement, Backing vocals, Bass, Piano, Vocals
Linda McCartney :
Backing vocals
Denny Laine :
Bass
Ringo Starr :
Drums
Eric Stewart :
Backing vocals
George Martin :
Arrangement, Producer
Geoff Emerick :
Mixing engineer, Recording engineer
Jon Jacobs :
Assistant mixing engineer, Assistant recording engineer
Keith Harvey :
Cello
Adrian Sheppard :
Drums, Percussion
Philip Jones :
Trumpet (?)
John Underwood :
Viola
Patrick Halling :
Violin
Dennis Vigay :
Cello
Laurie Lewis :
Violin
Galina Solodchin :
Violin
Michael Rennie :
Violin
George Turnlund :
Viola
Ken Essex :
Viola
Alexander Kok :
Cello
Peter Willison :
Cello
Alan Peters :
Violin
David Ogden :
Violin
Jeff Bryant :
French horn (?)
Philip Jones Brass Ensemble :
Brass instruments
Paul Archibald :
Trumpet (?)
James Watson :
Trumpet (?)
Michael Thompson :
French horn (?)
John Pigneguy :
French horn (?)
Raymond Premu :
Bass trombone (?)

Session Recording:
Jan 02, 1981
Studio :
Parkgate Studio, Sussex, UK

Session Recording:
July 1981
Studio :
AIR Studios, London

Session Mixing:
Oct 01, 1981
Studio :
AIR Studios, London, UK


Pure McCartney

Official album • Released in 2016

3:51 • Studio versionC

Paul McCartney :
Acoustic guitar, Arrangement, Backing vocals, Bass, Piano, Remixing, Vocals
Linda McCartney :
Backing vocals
Denny Laine :
Bass
Ringo Starr :
Drums
Eric Stewart :
Backing vocals
George Martin :
Arrangement, Producer
Geoff Emerick :
Recording engineer
Jon Jacobs :
Assistant recording engineer
Keith Harvey :
Cello
Adrian Sheppard :
Drums, Percussion
Philip Jones :
Trumpet (?)
John Underwood :
Viola
Patrick Halling :
Violin
Dennis Vigay :
Cello
Laurie Lewis :
Violin
Galina Solodchin :
Violin
Michael Rennie :
Violin
George Turnlund :
Viola
Ken Essex :
Viola
Alexander Kok :
Cello
Peter Willison :
Cello
Alan Peters :
Violin
David Ogden :
Violin
Jeff Bryant :
French horn (?)
Alex Wharton :
Mastering
Steve Orchard :
Remixing
Philip Jones Brass Ensemble :
Brass instruments
Paul Archibald :
Trumpet (?)
James Watson :
Trumpet (?)
Michael Thompson :
French horn (?)
John Pigneguy :
French horn (?)
Raymond Premu :
Bass trombone (?)

Session Recording:
Jan 02, 1981
Studio :
Parkgate Studio, Sussex, UK

Session Recording:
July 1981
Studio :
AIR Studios, London

Session Mixing:
Mar 02, 2015
Studio :
Hog Hill Studio, Rye, UK


Pure McCartney (Deluxe)

Official album • Released in 2016

3:51 • Studio versionC

Paul McCartney :
Acoustic guitar, Arrangement, Backing vocals, Bass, Piano, Remixing, Vocals
Linda McCartney :
Backing vocals
Denny Laine :
Bass
Ringo Starr :
Drums
Eric Stewart :
Backing vocals
George Martin :
Arrangement, Producer
Geoff Emerick :
Recording engineer
Jon Jacobs :
Assistant recording engineer
Keith Harvey :
Cello
Adrian Sheppard :
Drums, Percussion
Philip Jones :
Trumpet (?)
John Underwood :
Viola
Patrick Halling :
Violin
Dennis Vigay :
Cello
Laurie Lewis :
Violin
Galina Solodchin :
Violin
Michael Rennie :
Violin
George Turnlund :
Viola
Ken Essex :
Viola
Alexander Kok :
Cello
Peter Willison :
Cello
Alan Peters :
Violin
David Ogden :
Violin
Jeff Bryant :
French horn (?)
Alex Wharton :
Mastering
Steve Orchard :
Remixing
Philip Jones Brass Ensemble :
Brass instruments
Paul Archibald :
Trumpet (?)
James Watson :
Trumpet (?)
Michael Thompson :
French horn (?)
John Pigneguy :
French horn (?)
Raymond Premu :
Bass trombone (?)

Session Recording:
Jan 02, 1981
Studio :
Parkgate Studio, Sussex, UK

Session Recording:
July 1981
Studio :
AIR Studios, London

Session Mixing:
Mar 02, 2015
Studio :
Hog Hill Studio, Rye, UK

Bootlegs


MoMac's Hidden Tracks Vol.10

Unofficial album

1:43 • Studio version


MoMac's Hidden Tracks Vol.30

Unofficial album

3:32 • Studio version


MoMac's Hidden Tracks Vol.30

Unofficial album

4:03 • Studio version


MoMac's Hidden Tracks Vol.30

Unofficial album

1:03 • Studio version


Unsurpassed Rudeness

Unofficial album

1:46 • Outtake


Live performances

Paul McCartney has never played this song in concert.


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Mike 1 years ago

Brian Wilson wins a beautiful version of this song on Art of McCartney. I always thought it has echoes of Saint Saens 3rd symphony. Lovely song and has a great brass band quality to it. Love about of brass band me! Toot toot!


The PaulMcCartney Project 1 years ago

Thanks Mike. I haven't listened to the Art Of McCartney yet - sthg to do !