PAUL McCARTNEY - "McCartney III" - The rediscovery of intimacy

14. December 2020

Paul McCartney The Beatles

PAUL McCARTNEY - „McCartney III“ – Die Wiederentdeckung der Intimität

The consequences of the pandemic are unpredictable: Who would have thought that forty years after "McCartney II", Paul McCartney would still be recording a third part of his do-it-yourself album series? "When I'm locked up alone in my studio," the 78-year-old ex-beatle thought during the lockdown in spring, "I might as well make a little music.. On the occasion of the release of "McCartney III" on 11 December, eclipsed will shed light on the story behind an unconventional album trilogy.

In fact, the first two "McCartney" albums were also rather coincidental products, which were at the same time symptomatic of the time in which they were made. Incidentally, both the 1970s and 1980s works had a shocking effect on critics and fans in their own way

1970: "McCartney" - fragments and unfinished ideas

In order to understand why McCartney's solo debut disappointed the expectations of many fans and critics so much when it was released, one has to consider the high level of production technology and composition the Beatles had reached with their last album "Abbey Road". Together with George Martin, they had once again achieved a sound-technical miracle at the end of their career, full of great songs and sophisticated arrangements - and then, with Paul McCartney, of all people, who was considered the perfectionist of the Fab Four, they released an incongruent album full of song fragments and unfinished ideas as early as May 1970. Lennon had been expected to deliver the minimalism of the album "Plastic Ono Band", released at the end of 1970, just as Harrison had been expected to deliver the voluptuousness of his song album debut "All Things Must Pass". But what was wrong with good Macca, that he maltreated his audience with half-baked songs?

Well, with "Maybe I'm Amazed" the album contained one of his, as we know today, greatest solo pieces, and "Every Night" also passes as a completely composed, exceedingly successful song, while the wonderful miniature "Junk" was a remnant of the "White Album". But the drunk sounding opener "The Lovely Linda", the extremely reduced "That Would Be Something" or strange things like "Momma Miss America"? Many regarded the album as a kind of desperate act, as if McCartney hadn't come up with anything after the profitable Beatles years. Others interpreted it as a liberating act: Finally Paul could do what he wanted and how he wanted it, and if he felt like releasing something as spontaneous as intimate, he just did it. This was the luxury an ex-Beatle could afford. It was not until several decades later that some reviewers recognized a special quality in the unfinished and imperfect nature of the work. McCartney himself, in view of his do-it-yourself approach, described it to the "Rolling Stone" as an anticipation of what would later be called "indie" ...

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