C/D Paul McCartney Solo

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RJG, your story moves me.

the pinefox, Friday, 14 February 2003 13:26 (sixteen years ago) link

Bizarrely, I bought that for my dad. It's one of the few compilations to celebrate the Frog Chorus. Not even the three-dimensional slipcase makes up for that oversight on WINGSPAN.

PJ Miller (PJ Miller), Friday, 14 February 2003 21:11 (sixteen years ago) link

: )

I don't think I've even seen a copy of WINGSPAN in a record store.

I reminded my dad about the 'all the best'-for-christmas thing on friday night when we were in a car. he didn't really remember. he said "and why did she [my mum] buy you that instead?" and I told him again and he understood. then he asked "and why did you want 'faith'??" and the answer was...I was six...I had seen it advertised on television.

RJG (RJG), Sunday, 16 February 2003 05:54 (sixteen years ago) link

i second 1985; that song is really fun... when i was a kid, i used to really enjoy making up stupid lyrics to "let me roll it" like, um, "i can't tell you how i sneeze, my nose is like a breeze - let me blow it"... somehow that joke never got old for me!

dave k, Sunday, 16 February 2003 13:27 (sixteen years ago) link

WINGSPAN seems to be on special offer everywhere now. But tread carefully, some of them have boring two-dimensional sleeves. I see there is also a WINGSPAN book available, which must be a real treat. More alarmingly, I saw a bootleg of something called the ROCKESTRA in action. I thought ROCKESTRA was just a piece of music, but no. Fortunately, the bootleg was really expensive, so I didn't get it.

Yes, COMING UP is great.

PJ Miller (PJ Miller), Sunday, 16 February 2003 15:19 (sixteen years ago) link

Here's the book:


It's an intimate scrapbook.

PJ Miller (PJ Miller), Sunday, 16 February 2003 15:23 (sixteen years ago) link

Miller, you're wrong. I've NEVER seen WINGSPAN on special offer ANYWHERE.

Capitals are the new italics.

the pinefox, Sunday, 16 February 2003 16:21 (sixteen years ago) link


If that's not a special offer I'll EAT MY HAT. Note controversial opinion expressed herein: the best solo Paul McCartney work did not appear until FLOWERS IN THE DIRT. Before anyone rushes to order it, please note that it appears to be two-dimensional.

PJ Miller (PJ Miller), Sunday, 16 February 2003 17:57 (sixteen years ago) link

"Every Night" from the first solo album is an idyll of a song, very "Railways Conserve The Environment" 1970 (as opposed to, you know, RADICAL 1970) indeed. I'd have liked it if he'd written "Come And Get It" slightly later so it could be his first solo single, because it's better than "Another Day", or if he'd written it slightly earlier so it could be a Beatles single, because it's better than "Hello Goodbye". The promo film for "Helen Wheels" is fantastically evocative. "Hi Hi Hi" is better than "My Ding-A-Ling" precisely because it *isn't* "in the tradition of the music hall" (the hilarious reason given by the ultra-conservative Charles Curran-era BBC as to why it was still playing Chuck Berry's lowpoint when it had banned the Wings song in December 1972). It's also better than "C Moon", the glorified B-side which stole the airplay.

I used to listen to my mum's copy of "All The Best" all the time. On vinyl, too.

robin carmody (robin carmody), Monday, 17 February 2003 02:23 (sixteen years ago) link

Spies Like Us.


Love Coming Up and C Moon too.

Charlie (Charlie), Monday, 17 February 2003 02:32 (sixteen years ago) link

Every Night is wonderful. I have a fondness for the Pipes of Peace that might be spoiled by listening to it again. I wasn't the only 9 year old to have it in my class. I liked 'The Man' off that (w/Michael Jackson) a lot.

N. (nickdastoor), Monday, 17 February 2003 02:57 (sixteen years ago) link

You should give Pipes of Peace a listen and Report Back, N. The tablas make it curiously modern in the current climate. And the sentiments are obv. very much in vogue.

PJ Miller (PJ Miller), Monday, 17 February 2003 09:52 (sixteen years ago) link

Following on from Robin's wishes for Macca to write songs a bit earlier... I've always had this strange dream that the four Fabs actually sat down at some point in early 70, said "Let's forget about 'let it be' and make one final fine EP, one song each..." and they end up doing "Instant Karma", "Maybe I'm Amazed", "Isn't it a pity?" and "It don't come easy". Now that would have been good.

And then I wake up.

I had "All the best" on CD for many years, never listened to it, but I'll agree that "Venus and Mars" is a neglected classic, as is the first McCartney LP, very primitive but rather homely.

Rob M (Rob M), Monday, 17 February 2003 10:55 (sixteen years ago) link

nick has heard PIPES OF PEACE again, recently--maybe he just didn't notice/doesn't remember.

I had dreams about WINGSPAN last night. or it featured in my last night's dreams. I think it was really big and cost one hundred and twenty-five pounds or twenty-five pounds and was sealed in plastic and didn't tell me the tracklisting.

record shopping w/ allyC, yesterday, we saw many mccartney/wings albums. WINGS AT THE SPEED OF SOUND looked OK but was on cassette and three pounds fifty.

RJG (RJG), Monday, 17 February 2003 14:59 (sixteen years ago) link

SPEED OF SOUND is one of the weaker Wings efforts, I think. "Wino Junko," "Must Do Something About It," "Cook of The House"...no thanks. "Time To Hide" and "Beware My Love" are OK in a '70s AOR sort of way, though.

mike a (mike a), Monday, 17 February 2003 15:39 (sixteen years ago) link

'silly love songs' must redeem all.

RJG (RJG), Monday, 17 February 2003 15:46 (sixteen years ago) link

I don't hate that much of his studio solo stuff (don't love it either, most of it) but that new live album...the man's lost his voice and won't quit trying. Please, please stop, Paul, for your own sake. You suck like Billy Joel.

matt riedl (veal), Monday, 17 February 2003 16:05 (sixteen years ago) link

I meant the Pipes of Peace album, RJG. I heard only two tracks off it in your car.

N. (nickdastoor), Monday, 17 February 2003 18:45 (sixteen years ago) link

There's a PIPES OF PEACE album?!

PJ Miller (PJ Miller), Monday, 17 February 2003 18:59 (sixteen years ago) link

It is not all remixes of the title track, sadly.

N. (nickdastoor), Monday, 17 February 2003 19:33 (sixteen years ago) link

It has 'Say Say Say'!

N. (nickdastoor), Monday, 17 February 2003 19:34 (sixteen years ago) link

Are those the two tracks you heard in the car?

PJ Miller (PJ Miller), Monday, 17 February 2003 19:42 (sixteen years ago) link

Yes. It was RJG's famous 'All the best'. But I think 'The Man' is also 'the best'. 'Average Person' is not so good, as I recall.

Does anyone else like 'Hope of Deliverance'? I think it has a haunting melody.

N. (nickdastoor), Monday, 17 February 2003 19:46 (sixteen years ago) link

Yes. It's on heavy rotation in my head, helping me face up to the darkness that surrounds us.

PJ Miller (PJ Miller), Monday, 17 February 2003 20:10 (sixteen years ago) link

N, did you know that eric stewart of 10cc played on the Pipes of Peace album?

p.s. 'for your love'+'bus stop'=gouldman.

RJG (RJG), Monday, 17 February 2003 20:21 (sixteen years ago) link

I was thinking of Bobby Gould.

N. (nickdastoor), Monday, 17 February 2003 21:17 (sixteen years ago) link

Wasn't Pipes of Peace the one with Stanley Clarke?

dleone (dleone), Monday, 17 February 2003 21:42 (sixteen years ago) link

Weren't you actually thinking of Graham Gouldman, Nick?

robin carmody (robin carmody), Monday, 17 February 2003 23:12 (sixteen years ago) link

Yes, a mixed solo/Wings career, yet on the whole good I would say; the 1970-75 period produced generally excellent records, likewise 1978-83 (though not the poor 'Back to the Egg'...). 'McCartney II' (his best 'solo' album; most experimental and consistently engaging) & 'Pipes of Peace' (some lovely McCartney pop here) are very underrated albums. 'Tug of War''s best material is much as fine, yet it has some glaringly awful tracks which let it down. 'Red Rose Speedway', of the Wings era, is overlooked; probably the most Beatles-esque of all his post-Beatles albums, with a splendid 'Abbey Road'-like medley to close. Also 'Single Pigeon', 'When the Night' & 'One More Kiss' are deceptively slight, charming compositions. 'My Love' is a majestic McCartney ballad with wonderful guitar breaks... 'Little Lamb Dragonfly' ornate and richly produced melancholy.
'Venus and Mars' (increasingly getting some credit; good to see) and 'Band on the Run' are excellent as well. As is 'Ram' of course, a one-off record, pre-Wings, and yet with a superbly ramshackle focus to it; some very good material - a far better whole than 'McCartney'. 'London Town' - overlooked classic, with mostly fine material; 'I'm Carrying' is sublime... some good upbeat numbers here as well.
So, all of the above 'Classic' really... oh, plus 'We All Stand Together'; light-hearted whimsy given grandeur and grace... 'Once Upon a Long Ago'; amusing, quotable lyrics; a great production, sound and musical invention; fine single. 'Golden Earth Girl'; far and away ahead of most of 'Off the Ground', a majestic, atmospheric song. 'Wanderlust'; prime McCartney, would have graced a Beatles record... indeed George Martin's production and the arranging of the counter-melody harmonies bolster what is already a fine song into something special... 'Tug of War'; a song that gets in your head - brilliantly conceived melody and again production.

Dud: 'Wings at the Speed of Sound', 'Flaming Pie', 'Driving Rain' (a little better than 'FP'), 'Press to Play' (interesting yet not successful experimentation from Macca in 1986...) & 'Back to the Egg' (consistently average, only 'Old Siam Sir' makes any real impression).

Many albums of his i'm mixed about... yet, overall 'Classic', I maybe go towards this strongly as the general consensus is so unfairly a 'dud' opinion. You have to look deep into his work, and will find much that is good...

Tom May (Tom May), Thursday, 20 February 2003 22:43 (sixteen years ago) link

Macca on tour alert! Let's all go! Hits BCN at the end of March, must be in a town near you around about the same time. Well, same year. Hopefully I will be in a different town by then, but I might come back specially.

PJ Miller (PJ Miller), Friday, 21 February 2003 22:14 (sixteen years ago) link

So who wants to start a McCartney II viral revisionist campaign? It's only a matter of time before MOJO picks up on it.

mike a (mike a), Friday, 21 February 2003 22:17 (sixteen years ago) link

Only if people promise to biggie up 'Waterfalls'.

PJ Miller (PJ Miller), Friday, 21 February 2003 22:58 (sixteen years ago) link

why did ally cook lie and say he'd answered this thread?

RJG (RJG), Saturday, 22 February 2003 01:26 (sixteen years ago) link

OK. Given All The Best by father also. Heard it again in Richard's car. Silly Love Songs perfect. I like other songs also.

Ally C (Ally C), Wednesday, 26 February 2003 21:36 (sixteen years ago) link

So who wants to start a McCartney II viral revisionist campaign? It's only a matter of time before MOJO picks up on it

Too late, it was in the issue with Santana on the cover.

dleone (dleone), Wednesday, 26 February 2003 21:38 (sixteen years ago) link

No one mentioned 'Arrow Through Me' from Back to the Egg. Other than that, side one of 'Ram', 'Maybe I'm Amazed', bits of McCartney II... yikes, though. yikes.

If one's scratching one's head about how badly Paul's solo cheese wears on the nerves, try the following experiment: program disc one of the white album to only play Paul's tracks. Starts off okay but the unrelenting 'Ob-la-di' to 'Martha My Dear' to 'Blackbird', by the time it gets to 'Rocky Racoon' you'll be clawing your face off.

Jon Leidecker, Thursday, 27 February 2003 18:34 (sixteen years ago) link

'So who wants to start a McCartney II viral revisionist campaign? It's only a matter of time before MOJO picks up on it'

Search ILM for 'Coming Up' and see how many times I've mentioned it, and how far back these mentions go. Absolute classic

dave q, Friday, 28 February 2003 11:20 (sixteen years ago) link

"Search ILM for 'Coming Up' and see how many times I've mentioned it, and how far back these mentions go. Absolute classic."

It should be mentioned that it's the MCCARTNEY II version that should be considered "classic." The live version, which Columbia released as a single in the US, pales in comparison (though there's a very strange meteor-shower synth break toward the end).

Am I the only person who thinks BACK TO THE EGG is almost the equal of BAND ON THE RUN/VENUS & MARS? Probably.

mike a (mike a), Friday, 28 February 2003 16:33 (sixteen years ago) link

McArtney & Ram are classic. Everything up through Venus & Mars was great (but not classic), and everything since then has been a bit dodgy. Paul can definitely come on like a real lounge singer/Muzak tape most of the time.

John Bullabaugh (John Bullabaugh), Sunday, 9 March 2003 02:13 (sixteen years ago) link

That's far too sweeping a statement; there is much good in his post-1975 work... 'London Town', 'McCartney II' at least are neglected triumphs for me; and 'Pipes of Peace' and 'Tug of War' are largely very good. Otherwise, certainly a bit patchy as regards consistency in his albums, but good material is there; if being more difficult to find.

Tom May (Tom May), Sunday, 9 March 2003 19:19 (sixteen years ago) link

McCartney solo would fit better in a S/D thread than a C/D thread, because it depends a lot on which album.

Most obvious cases of search:
"Tug Of War", "Flowers In The Dirt", "Band On The Run", "Venus And Mars"

"Wild Life", "McCartney II", "Press To Play", "Wings At The Speed Of Sound", "Pipes Of Peace".

Other than the disastrous "Wild Life", even the worst albums contain at least one or two great tracks each though.

Geir Hongro (GeirHong), Sunday, 9 March 2003 19:22 (sixteen years ago) link

You should give Pipes of Peace a listen and Report Back, N. The tablas make it curiously modern in the current climate. And the sentiments are obv. very much in vogue.

The production on that album is definitely classy, but the songs are just too weak for it to avoid the dustbin. "Tug Of War" has the same marvellous production, and contains almost exclusively great songs. (Yes, even "Ebony & Ivory" isn't that bad, really)

Geir Hongro (GeirHong), Sunday, 9 March 2003 19:25 (sixteen years ago) link

Only if people promise to biggie up 'Waterfalls'.

"Waterfalls" is the only really good song on that album. "Coming Up" is a dud IMO. Just because John Lennon liked it doesn't automatically mean it was good (in fact, most of Lennon's solo work sucked anyway)

Geir Hongro (GeirHong), Sunday, 9 March 2003 19:27 (sixteen years ago) link

The lyric: 'I acted like a dustbin lid!' never ceases to crease my features in laughter. This is from 'The Other Me', one of many enjoyable pop songs on 'Pipes of Peace'. Give it a listen in a light-hearted mood I suggest, and it will reward.
'Tug of War': indeed 'Ebony & Ivory' is pretty decent, certainly likeable, admirable in tune and sentiment, if no McCartney (or indeed Wonder) masterpiece single. 'Wanderlust' is utterly beautiful; surely appreciated by any Beatles fans looking for the inventive balladeering of his heyday in that group...
'Tug of War' has some *awful* tracks though, IMO; 'What's that you're do-ing?' (which goes on for nearly *7* minutes) and 'Get It'.

'Flowers in the Dirt' has a far worse production than 'Pipes of Peace'; it really lacks focus and sympathy for the songs. There is some fine material on there, but much of it is middling.

Do *not* destroy 'McCartney II'... it's a revelation frankly! Such a massive step up from 'Back to the Egg' and more cohesive and compelling I believe than 'McCartney' (though 'Junk' & 'Every Night' are sublime). It is McCartney very interestingly going down the route of electronic music; which sadly he didn't continue so much on his next two (nevertheless good) albums. 'Summer's Day Song' is among McCartney's most beautiful, as is 'Waterfalls'... 'Frozen Jap' and 'Front Parlour' see a Kraftwerk-type influence beautifully used to make jaunty, expressively melancholic electronic pieces. 'Dark Room' is oddball in a great manner... 'One of these Days' is a masterful close to the album.

'Press To Play' possibly does... but it is mis-produced and really inadequate in its music and songwriting (will have to give it another chance, mind).
I fully agree on 'Wings at the Speed of Sound'; apart from 'Silly Love Songs' (a badly produced and sounding recording of it) and the towering pop of 'Le 'Em In', it is a seriously mediocre record and the one with the most detrimental influence of the other Wings members.
'Ram', 'Band on the Run', 'Red Rose Speedway' and 'Venus and Mars' are unreservedly recommended as an fine early quartet of albums.

Tom May (Tom May), Sunday, 9 March 2003 19:40 (sixteen years ago) link

'Tug of War' has some *awful* tracks though, IMO; 'What's that you're do-ing?' (which goes on for nearly *7* minutes) and 'Get It'.

Wouldn't call any of them awful. Although they are clearly tracks that seem like partly failed attempts to copy his duet partner's musical styles.

Geir Hongro (GeirHong), Sunday, 9 March 2003 19:42 (sixteen years ago) link

'Flowers in the Dirt' has a far worse production than 'Pipes of Peace'

I love the production on that one too. But, then again, I enjoy most of what Mitchell Froom and Trevor Horn/Stephen Lipson have ever done sonically.

Geir Hongro (GeirHong), Sunday, 9 March 2003 19:43 (sixteen years ago) link

Hmmm, I may need to listen to 'FitD' again, as it is a while since I heard it, but it just didn't impress me with its production. Is it actually Horn himself involved?

Tom May (Tom May), Sunday, 9 March 2003 19:51 (sixteen years ago) link

Is it actually Horn himself involved?

The hits are mainly produced by Mitchell Froom (Crowded House, Suzanne Vega, early 90s Elvis Costello). But Trevor Horn produced "How Many People" and "Figure Of Eight"

Geir Hongro (GeirHong), Sunday, 9 March 2003 19:54 (sixteen years ago) link

'Figure of Eight', 'Distractions' and 'Put it There' seemed to me the best overall songs there... thinks like 'You want her too' and 'My Brave Face' are *good*, but somehow sound unwieldy to me.

Tom May (Tom May), Sunday, 9 March 2003 19:57 (sixteen years ago) link

two weeks pass...
i have heard that 'temporary secretary' is a good song. and, 'secret friend', i think?

i have heard neither, and know very little about mccartney solo. what are these songs like?

gareth (gareth), Monday, 24 March 2003 14:58 (sixteen years ago) link

fans members

DJI, Wednesday, 15 August 2018 21:39 (one year ago) link

The new song sounds like something Ed Sheeran would toss off and discard for being too sappy. It's not like it's Paul's first ever misstep, of course, but even at his worst he's always sounded like he's following his own ideas, this isn't even that.

mfktz (Camaraderie at Arms Length), Wednesday, 15 August 2018 23:07 (one year ago) link

That’s about the least charitable reading of this possible but it may not be far off. Throughout McCartney’s solo career he has followed his various muses – one of which is to do “his” version of artists he admires. It’s led to some of his best stuff (“Arrow Thru Me” = Aja-era Steely Dan, “Summer Day’s Song” = BaAS-era Eno) and plenty of pablum. Perhaps this is his Sheeran nick. Or maybe it’s just his Viagra-era update of “Press.” Regardless, I love that he’s still doing it.

Naive Teen Idol, Thursday, 16 August 2018 01:34 (one year ago) link

“I just wanna fuh ... YOUUUUUUUUUUUUU!!!!!!”

Naive Teen Idol, Thursday, 16 August 2018 12:56 (one year ago) link

FUH! All Night!

DavidLeeRoth, Thursday, 16 August 2018 13:33 (one year ago) link

it really sucks

The Desus & Mero Chain (upper mississippi sh@kedown), Thursday, 16 August 2018 13:40 (one year ago) link

Maybe he's calling back to this.


Eliza D., Thursday, 16 August 2018 13:44 (one year ago) link

His voice is near enough Fuh'd at this point.

Le Baton Rose (Turrican), Thursday, 16 August 2018 18:13 (one year ago) link

right there
that's it

morning wood truancy (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Thursday, 16 August 2018 18:17 (one year ago) link

one month passes...

what is this shit

niels, Tuesday, 25 September 2018 07:22 (eleven months ago) link

five months pass...

Love how the solo in "Maybe I'm Amazed" is the best George Harrison approximation he could do. Also the muted guitar in the second verse (I think -- about 2:15). Never paid attention to this song, but really digging it (this week).

john. a resident of evanston. (john. a resident of chicago.), Tuesday, 12 March 2019 03:00 (six months ago) link

Man, I've taken "Uncle Albert / Admiral Halsey" for for my entire life. There's so much to love in it -- the chirping, the harmonies ("allllbehhhrt...ahhhhl daaaay"), his voice in the Admiral Halsey part, "leetle leetle gypsy get around"...What a song.

john. a resident of evanston. (john. a resident of chicago.), Thursday, 21 March 2019 01:32 (six months ago) link

If pushed, that or "Another Day" would be my POO Macca solo song.

an incoherent crustacean (MatthewK), Thursday, 21 March 2019 05:28 (six months ago) link

four months pass...

I'm finally going out and listening to all of the Beatle's solo records. "Monkberry Moon Delight" was a nice find off of RAM. I kinda think that Paul is trying to get a Leon Russell thing going in the verses, but it's a bit more over the top. Kinda gets almost a Tom Waits kinda sounding growl at points.

earlnash, Tuesday, 13 August 2019 23:06 (one month ago) link

I was thinking more Beefheart - his "Monkberry moooon deliiiiight" phrasing isn't too far from "Mooonlight on vermooooooont"

Οὖτις, Wednesday, 21 August 2019 16:10 (one month ago) link

That's a good call ... certainly contemporaneous and in keeping with a lot of his solo efforts nicking other artists' styles for his own purposes.

Naive Teen Idol, Wednesday, 21 August 2019 17:44 (one month ago) link

monkberry moon delight is a bit of a favourite in my household.

listened to Ram on sunday afternoon for the first time in ages. actively enjoyed it, especially uncle albert/admiral halsey, despite that being so excruciatingly paul at his whimsical worst

Seany's too Dyche to mention (jim in vancouver), Wednesday, 21 August 2019 17:47 (one month ago) link

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