paul mccartney a life

5

Paul McCartney pointing out the hypocrisy of the press and their ‘Moral Crusades’.

On 17 June 1967, Life Magazine ran an interview with Paul McCartney in which the Beatle admitted to having taken LSD. The UK press immediately seized upon it, and two days later McCartney gave a statement to Independent Television News (ITN).

sgt pepper explained
  • sgt pepper: the beatles are having an identity crisis
  • a little help from my friends: ringo wants drugs (and the boys got him)
  • lucy in the sky: the john lennon equivalent of hanging his son's drawing on the fridge
  • getting better: wtf yeah i guess it is
  • fixing a hole: paul has chores
  • she's leaving home: paul john and george martin's lonely hearts club band
  • for the benefit of mr kite: scary circus (normal circus)
  • within you without you: george and george martin's lonely hearts club band
  • when i'm 64: things we said today but with grandchildren on yerr knee
  • lovely rita: faul's thirsty for the lady who killed paul
  • good morning: john went for a walk today (oh boy)
  • sgt pepper reprise: the beatles try to convince us once again that it's not them but they're gonna have to try harder than that
  • a day in the life: was george even here
A Day In The Life...

John: “I was reading the paper one day and noticed two stories. One was about the Guiness heir who killed himself in a car. That was the main headline story. He died in London in a car crash. On the next page was the story about 4000 potholes in the streets of Blackburn, Lancashire, that needed to be filled.” - source: Anthology

Paul: “It was a song that John brought over to me at Cavendish Ave. It was his original idea. He’d been reading the Daily Mail and brought the newspaper with him over to my house. We went upstairs to the music room and started to work on it. He had the first verse, he had the war and a little bit of the second verse”. - source: Many years from now.

John: “A Day in the Life” – that was something. I dug it. It was good piece of work between Paul and me. I had the “I read the news today” bit, and it turned Paul on. Now and then we really turn each other on with a bit of a song, and he just said “yeah”- bang, bang, like that. It just sort of happened beautifully…” - source: Rolling stone Interview.

Paul: “We looked through the newspaper and both wrote the verse “how many holes in Blackburn, Lancashire.” I liked the way he said ‘Lan-ca-shire’, which is the way you pronounce it up north. Then I had the sequence that fitted, “Woke up, fell out of bed…’ and we had to link them. This was the time of Tim Leary’s “Turn on, tune in, drop out” and we wrote “I’d love to turn you on.” John and I gave each other a knowing look: “Uh-huh, it’s a drug song. You know that don’t you?” “Yes, but at the same time, our stuff is always very ambiguous and ‘turn you on’ can be sexual so…c’mon! As John and I looked at each other, a little flash went between our eyes, like “I’d love to turn you on”, a recognition of what we were doing, so I thought, OK, we’ve just got to have something amazing that will illustrate that.” - source: Many Years from now.


[Paul: “I think it would be great if we ask each member of the orchestra to play randomly,”

George Martin: “Randomly, that will sound like a cacophony; it’s pointless”

Paul: “OK, well then not completely randomly. Maybe we could get each of them to do a slow climb from the lowest note their instrument can play to the highest”

John: “Yeah, and also have them start really quietly and louder and louder, so that it eventually becomes an orgasm of sound.”

George Martin: “The problem is that you can’t ask classical musicians of that caliber to improvise and not follow a score- they’ll simply have no idea what to do.”

John: “Well, if we put them in silly party hats and rubber noses, maybe then they’ll understand what it is we want. That will loosen up those tight-asses.”] - Geoff Emerick - Here, There and Eveywhere: My life recording the music of the Beatles

Paul: “Have you got the loud pedal down, Mal?”

Mal: “Which one is that?”

Paul:  “The right hand one, far right. It keeps the echo going.”

John: “Keep it down the whole time.”

Paul: “Right. On four then One, two, three…”

What followed was the sound of John, Mal, Paul, Ringo and George Martin all simultaneously hitting E Major. John, Mal and George Martin had their own pianos while Paul and Ringo both played an out of tune Steinway upright. All stood up in order to apply the maximum amount of force to the keys. - From Mark Lewisohn’s “The Complete Beatles Recording Sessions”.

George Martin: “Geoff Emerick, up in the control room, once again had to ensure that every last droplet of sound from the studio was captured onto tape, To do this he used heavy compression and all the while was manually lifting the volume faders, which started close to their lowest point and gradually made their way to the maximum setting. By the end the attenuation was enormous. You could have heard a pin drop.”


2

Exactly a year earlier, while I was walking along the beach, climbing rocks, along the shore came Paul McCartney, just before he played the Super Bowl that year. - He just turned up, said he’d found out where I lived from my neighbor Bruce Willis. He said, “Oh, I just came down. I hope it’s OK. Sorry I didn’t ring.” And since I don’t answer the phone anyway, it was the only way he could do it. - Paul started to turn up every day, when his kid was sleeping. - We fell straight in, talking about the past, talking about songwriting. 

We talked about such strangely simple things as the difference between the Beatles and the Stones and that the Beatles were a vocal band because they could all sing the lead vocal, and we were more of a musicians’ band–we only had one front man. He told me that because he was lefthanded, he and John could play the guitars like mirrors opposite each other, watching each other’s hands. So we started playing like that. We even started composing a song together, a McCartney/Richards number whose lyrics were pinned on the wall for many weeks.

- Keith Richards on his relationship with Paul McCartney