PAUL McCARTNEY – ” McCartney III “

Posted: December 19, 2020 in ALBUMS, MUSIC
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50 years following the release of his self-titled first solo album McCartney, featuring Paul McCartney playing every instrument and writing and recording every song, Macca delivers McCartney III. Paul hadn’t planned to release an album in 2020, but in the isolation of “Rockdown,” he soon found himself fleshing out some existing musical sketches and creating even more new ones. Before long an eclectic collection of spontaneous songs would become McCartney III: a stripped back, self-produced and, quite literally, solo work marking the opening of a new decade, in the tradition of 1970’s McCartney and 1980’s McCartney II.

At midnight on the day of the release, McCartney released the official music video for the lead track, “Find My Way.” Directed by Roman Coppola, the shoot utilized 46 cameras to capture McCartney on every instrument and from every angle, resulting in an intimate glimpse.

McCartney III is mostly built from live takes of Paul on vocals and guitar or piano, overdubbing his bass playing, drumming, etc. atop that foundation. McCartney III spans a vast and intimate range of modes and moods, from soul-searching to wistful, from playful to raucous and all points between — captured with some of the same gear from Paul’s Rude Studio used as far back as 1971 Wings sessions. And Paul’s array of vintage instruments he played on the new album have an even more storied history, including Bill Black of Elvis Presley’s original trio’s double bass alongside Paul’s own iconic Hofner violin bass, and a mellotron from Abbey Road Studios used on Beatles recordings, to name but a few. Just as McCartney’s 1970 release marked Paul’s return to basics in the wake of the biggest band break-up in musical history, and the 1980 avant-garde masterpiece McCartney II rose from the ashes of Wings, McCartney III finds Paul back on his own, turning unexpected circumstances into a personal snapshot of a timeless artist at a unique point in history.

With extra time on his hands due to the pandemic, Sir Paul is rumoured to have recorded as many as 25 tracks. In keeping with McCartney & McCartney II’s photography by Linda McCartney, the principal photos for III were shot by Paul’s daughter Mary McCartney—with additional photography by Paul’s nephew Sonny McCartney as well as photos Paul took on his phone (it’s a family affair). The cover art and typography is by celebrated American artist Ed Ruscha.

From the album’s announcement: Recorded earlier this year in Sussex, McCartney III  is mostly built from live takes of Paul on vocals and guitar or piano, overdubbing his bass playing, drumming, etc.  atop that foundation. The process first sparked when Paul returned to an unreleased track from the early 90s, “When Winter Comes” co-produced by George Martin).  Paul crafted a new passage for the song, giving rise to album opener “‘Long Tailed Winter Bird”—while “When Winter Comes,”  featuring its 2020 intro, “Winter Bird,” became the new album’s grand finale.

Recorded earlier in 2020 in Sussex, “McCartney III” is mostly built from live takes of Paul on vocals and guitar or piano, overdubbing his bass playing, drumming, etc. atop that foundation. McCartney III spans a vast and intimate range of modes and moods, from soul searching to wistful, from playful to raucous and all points between. [A Songbook edition containing piano/vocal/guitar arrangements for all songs from McCartney III and accompanying CD is also available, The three releases are true solo efforts in that McCartney performed all the instruments himself (with occasional vocal assistance from his wife, Linda, on the first two).

A follow-up to his 1970 self-titled solo debut and 1980’s McCartney II, the new album features the McCartney playing all the instruments; he wrote and recorded every song.

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