Skip to main content

Paul McCartney released a new solo album on Dec. 18. The former Beatle recorded McCartney III while in coronavirus (COVID-19) lockdown. As people listen to his new music, the singer/songwriter reflected on some of his past hits and misses.

Paul McCartney
Paul McCartney | Jim Dyson/Getty Images

McCartney was a guest on The Adam Buxton Podcast on Dec. 11 to discuss McCartney III. He was rather self-critical about some of his past albums, but shared his surprise about one that became a hit with fans. 

From The Beatles to Wings to solo albums, Paul McCartney admits they’re not all winners 

McCartney has been prolific recording albums with Wings and solo records. However, McCartney will be the first to admit they’re not all up to The Beatles’ standards. 

“I think when you’ve made the record, you’ve tried your best and I think at that time, you think, ‘This is good. This is a good record so I’ll put it out.’” McCartney told Buxton. “Looking back on them sometimes, you think, ‘That wasn’t too good. I must’ve been in a bit of a daze or something when I did that one.’ So there are some favorites, some ones where I think I really nailed it and then there are some that are not so good.”

Paul McCartney has come around on this album, thanks to fans 

As self-critical as McCartney can be, fans don’t always agree. The former Beatle shared his surprise that a certain 1980 solo album has become popular. 

Beatles member Paul McCartney
Paul McCartney | NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

“The interesting thing that happens is, as the years go by, someone will go, ‘You know the one I love of yours?’” McCartney said. “And it’ll be one you didn’t think was particularly spectacular. And they’ll go, ‘I love that McCartney II.’ It was just a little experiment and at the time I wasn’t sure whether it was any good but people talk about it and remind me of their favorites.”

The two tracks that resurrected ‘McCartney II’

Two songs from McCartney II have emerged as fan favorites, according to McCartney. Although he feels they could due with some remixing, McCartney said “Waterfalls” is one of them. 

“When I did it, I always thought, ‘It’s okay. I like the vocal, I like the tune but the backing is just a little synth strings.’” McCartney said. “I did think since then a great George Martin arrangement wouldn’t have hurt it. I’ll tell you what I like is, ‘Check my machine’ which is just a crazy little track. That was intended to be just a crazy little record. Sometimes you make records and think this may not sell but I’m enjoying myself so I’ll do it.”

The other McCartney II song that fans keep telling McCartney about is “Temporary Secretary

Paul McCartney and Nancy Shevell
Nancy Shevell and Paul McCartney | David M. Benett/Dave Benett/Getty Images

Paul McCartney Taught Jon Bon Jovi a Beatles Trick For His New Album

“The interesting thing is after time elapsed, people say, ‘Oh, I love that,’” McCartney said. “‘Temporary Secretary’ off that album got mentioned a lot. Someone came to me and said, ‘There’s this guy in a club in Brighton who’s playing the hell out of it.’ I said what? ‘Temporary Secretary.’ So I gave it another listen. I go, ‘Oh, I could see that’. And then we started doing it in our show.”