All My Loving
PHOTO CREDIT: Collier Schorr
The Genius of Paul McCartney: The Ultimate Playlist
ALTHOUGH this feature is not directly related to...
PHOTO CREDIT: @PaulMcCartney
any release from The Beatles or anniversary, I have been reading All The Songs: The Story Behind Every Beatles Release and look at each of The Beatles’ songs deconstructed and examined. Although George Harrison wrote some of The Beatles best tracks – including Something and Here Comes the Sun -, the main force behind the band was John Lennon and Paul McCartney. Whilst the duo wrote some of their biggest hits together, quite often it was either Lennon or McCartney that took the lead. Whether you are more in the Lennon or McCartney camp regarding the best tracks, one cannot deny that, between them, they are responsible for some of the best songs ever written. One can examine a songwriter like Paul McCartney from different angles and see how he evolved. From the man who wrote gorgeous love songs and some of the catchiest Pop of the 1960s, he then developed into this more mature and ambitious songwriter. You look at the earliest Beatles albums and there are some incredible song but it was by the time of Revolver (1966) when McCartney really started to spread his wings and splice other genres together. I love how all of his songs sound fresh and unique yet you can understand them all. Lennon often teased McCartney because of his ‘granny songs’ – those he felt were a bit soft and comedic. It is true that, compared to Lennon, McCartney was more varied regarding emotions and would show his sensitivity; talk about characters and engage more with the whimsical.
IMAGE CREDIT: Peter Blake
By the time The Beatles hit the studio for 1967’s Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, he had assumed the role of leader of the band and was responsible for some of the best songs on that record – including She’s Leaving Home and Fixing a Hole. I love that album but I think there was greater genius and range from McCartney by 1968’s The Beatles. Consider the fact that the man wrote Helter Skelter and Blackbird in the same time period! It is amazing to think that, during a tough time for the band – cracks were starting to appear and there were tense moments in the studio – such rich and complete songs were produced. Although a lot of the recording period in 1968 was frostier than the early Beatles days, there were great moments of collaboration and support. The Beatles split by 1970 but, between Magical Mystery Tour (1967), Abbey Road (1969) and Let It Be (1970), McCartney did not let his genius dent: creating songs such as The Fool on the Hill, Get Back and Let It Be; let us not forget the stunning Hey Jude and Penny Lane! I have skimmed through the great Beatles moments from Paul McCartney but, as a solo artist and part of Wings, he reminded the world why he is one of the greatest songwriters ever.
Last year’s Egypt Station was received well by critics and contained some cracking moments. There have been some underwhelming albums from McCartney but Ram (1971), Flowers in the Dirt (1989) and 1997’s Flaming Pie are classics. Think about Wings’ albums like Band on the Run and Venus and Mars and, again, McCartney crafting these original and distinct songs. He proved he could work solo and in a number of guises and not lose his golden touch. Despite some of the mishaps and weaker records, McCartney still remains this genius who does not look set to retire anytime soon. He is touring the world and captivating audiences over six decades since he started out in music. Maybe his Beatles best outstrips the rest but I do love a lot of his solo albums and the stuff he did with Wings. I hope there are more albums left in McCartney and we need to treasure these iconic songwriters who have given the world so much. Whether drawing from his emotional breakups and romantic strife or detaching and writing about these wonderful characters…there has not been another songwriter like Paul McCartney in the world! The man away from the music is an activist and passionate human who campaigns and uses his voice for good. He is a long-time vegetarian and someone who strikes the heart and mind as well as the soul. I have never met the man but I can imagine McCartney is an amazing interviewee who can craft some wonderful stories.
To end this piece, I have collated together what, I think, are the best Paul McCartney songs ever – whether created alone or he had the majority share (writing with John Lennon or Linda McCartney). It is a testament to his legacy, talent and range that there is wide variety of songs to be found. You just know McCartney loves the process of songwriting and it is a way of touching the world. He is someone who wants to reach the masses and inspire them. From a young boy to where he is now, music is all he has ever wanted to do and that gift was instilled in him very early. There are countless artists who owe a debt to McCartney and what he has given the world – and what he continues to do. There is nobody like McCartney and it is clear we will never see anyone else like him again. Even in his mid-seventies, the man is travelling the world and putting on a hell of a show! I hope McCartney continues to rock into his eighties and there is a lot more fantastic music left in him. Whether you were a fan of The Beatles and experienced them the first time around or are younger and found them more recently, we all have those favourite songs and moments. To me, it is a close thing between John Lennon and Paul McCartney but McCartney just edges it when it comes to the classics! Keep abreast of where the legend is heading and what is happening because he keeps pretty active on social media. I love the fact that McCartney is still this huge force in the world of music. We have a lot to look forward to from him but, when you think about all he has given the world, it seems hardly believable one man…
IN THIS PHOTO: The Beatles in 1967/PHOTO CREDIT: Express Newspapers via AP Images
COULD be responsible for that!