ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Paul McCartney--The Stories Behind the Music

Updated on February 1, 2019
Carb Diva profile image

In search of fascinating travel destinations, seeking relaxation and fun, and (of course) eating great food.

Sir Paul

A year ago I was privileged to witness the One-on-One Concert presented by Sir Paul McCartney. Privileged? You might think too strong, but consider this:

  • Paul McCartney has been knighted. Yes! Knighted by the Queen of England!!! How many of you can say that?
  • He has more money than God. Seriously, his net worth is at least $1.2 billion dollars. He isn’t doing this for the money!
  • The man is 73 years old. Most septuagenarians that I know are using walkers and going to bed at 8 pm. Beginning at 8 pm he gave us three full hours of non-stop entertainment. And YES, he can still hit those high notes.

I won’t go so far as to say that it was a religious experience, but the evening began by seeing one of the two surviving Beatles on stage, bathed in white light with the introductory chord of “A Hard Day’s Night” ringing through the arena—it was invigorating, exciting, and filled me with unadulterated joy.

McCartney and his band took us on an amazing journey, spanning five decades.

Read Me

If you don't want to read this entire hub, at the very least I hope that you will take the time to listen to the video of the band's performance of "Live and Let Die". Turn up your speakers, expand the screen view, and be prepared to be blown away.

An Evening of Story and Song

“A Hard Day’s Night” is certainly a signature song for The Beatles, and with it all of us were instantly transported to afternoons of listening to 78’s on our turntables. While other musical artists tend to distance themselves from their early roots, McCartney recognizes how meaningful these moments in time are to the fans that have been a part of his career that began in 1960 with The Quarrymen.

During the course of the evening, McCartney shared with us the history behind some of these songs. I will share the play list with you, and the stories we learned along the way:

  • A Hard Day’s Night (The Beatles song)
  • Save Us
  • Can’t Buy Me Love (The Beatles song)
  • Letting Go (Wings song)
  • Temporary Secretary

  • Let Me Roll It (Wings song)

I attended this concert in Seattle—birthplace of Jimi Hendrix, and so it was only fitting that McCartney would precede one of his songs with the introductory chords of “Foxy Lady”. Paul shared with us a story about that late-great artist and how their paths had crossed. Hendrix lived for some time in London. He was a great admirer of McCartney’s writing skills, and McCartney, of course, was in awe of Hendrix’ artistry with the electric guitar. Jimi purchased “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band” the day it was released and covered the title song just two days later at the Saville Theatre in London. McCartney was in the audience and spoke of how honored and humbled he felt at this performance which was "simply incredible, perhaps the best I have ever seen him play".

  • I've Got a Feeling (The Beatles song)


  • My Valentine

This song is a new addition to McCartney’s playlist; he wrote it in February as a loving tribute to Nancy, his wife of 4½ years.

My Valentine

What if it rained?

We didn't care

She said that someday soon

the sun was gonna shine.

And she was right,

this love of mine,

My Valentine

As days and nights,

would pass me by

I tell myself that I was waiting for a sign

Then she appeared,

a love so fine,

My Valentine

And I will love her for life

And I will never let a day go by

without remembering the reasons why

she makes me certain

that I can fly

And so I do,

without a care

I know that someday soon the sun is gonna shine

And she'll be there

This love of mine

My Valentine

My Valentine

What if it rained?

We didn't care.

She said that someday soon

the sun was gonna shine

and she was right

This love of mine,

My Valentine

  • Nineteen Hundred and Eighty-Five (Wings song)
  • Here, There and Everywhere (The Beatles song)
  • Maybe I’m Amazed

Paul McCartney and Linda Eastman were wed in 1969 and were inseparable until her death in 1998. McCartney credits her with pulling him from a deep depression that he suffered when The Beatles disbanded. “Maybe I’m Amazed” is Paul’s tribute to Linda and is regarded as one of his finest love songs; it achieved the number 347 position in the "500 Greatest Songs of All Time" list compiled by Rolling Stone magazine.

Maybe I'm Amazed

Maybe I'm amazed at the way you love me all the time

Maybe I'm afraid of the way I love you

Maybe I'm amazed at the the way you pulled me out of time

And hung me on a line

Maybe I'm amazed at the way I really need you

Maybe I'm a man and maybe I'm a lonely man

Who's in the middle of something

That he doesn't really understand

Maybe I'm a man and maybe you're the only woman

Who could ever help me

Baby won't you help me understand

Maybe I'm a man and maybe I'm a lonely man

Who's in the middle of something

That he doesn't really understand

Maybe I'm a man and maybe you're the only woman

Who could ever help me

Baby won't you help me understand

Maybe I'm amazed at the way you're with me all the time

Maybe I'm afraid of the way I leave you

Maybe I'm amazed at the way you help me sing my song

Right me when I'm wrong

Maybe I'm amazed at the way I really need you

  • We Can Work It Out (The Beatles song)
  • In Spite of All the Danger (The Quarrymen song)
  • You Won’t See Me (The Beatles song)
  • Love Me Do (The Beatles song)
  • And I Love Her (The Beatles song)

Blackbird (The Beatles song)

McCartney explained that he wrote this song as a response to racial tensions escalating in the United States during the spring of 1968—a song of hope for a brighter future.

Here Today

Paul McCartney and John Lennon met as teenagers in July 1957. Lennon had formed a band named The Quarrymen and a mutual friend had suggested that McCartney come and watch them perform. Paul played the guitar for John who was so impressed he asked McCartney to join…and the rest is history. Together the two would compose over 180 songs. Although they often worked independently, it was rare that a song would be completed without input from one for the other. Much has been written of the McCartney-Lennon relationship both in and outside of the recording studio. At times the relationship was strained, contentious. But in the final analysis, McCartney says that the two were friends.

On December 8, 1980 John Winston Lennon was gunned down at the entrance of the Dakota, his New York City apartment. Paul wrote this song as a tribute to his friend.

Here Today

And if I say I really knew you well

What would your answer be?

If you were here today

Ooo ooo ooo, here today

Well, knowing you

You'd probably laugh and say

That we were worlds apart

If you were here today

Ooo ooo ooo, here today

But as for me,

I still remember how it was before

And I am holding back the tears no more

Ooo ooo ooo, I love you, ooo

What about the time we met?

Well, I suppose that you could say

That we were playing hard to get

Didn't understand a thing

But we could always sing

What about the night we cried?

Because there wasn't any reason

Left to keep it all inside

Never understood a word

But you were always there with a smile

And if I say I really loved you

And was glad you came along

And you were here today

Ooo ooo ooo, for you were in my song

Ooo ooo ooo, here today

  • Queenie Eye
  • New
  • The Fool on the Hill (The Beatles song)
  • Lady Madonna (The Beatles song)
  • FourFiveSeconds (Rihanna and Kanye West and Paul McCartney cover)
  • Eleanor Rigby (The Beatles song)
  • Being for the Benefit of Mr. Kite! (The Beatles song)
  • Something (The Beatles song)
  • Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da (The Beatles song)
  • Band on the Run (Wings song)
  • Back in the U.S.S.R. (The Beatles song)

Paul McCartney and his band performed in Red Square in 2003. He related the story of his nervous at the prospect of meeting the foreign ministers of the Soviet—key officials of the Kremlin. His fears were soon erased when one of them confessed to learning English by listening to Beatles songs in his youth.

  • Let It Be (The Beatles song)

Live and Let Die

This is the one you've been waiting for.

This was by far the one performance that brought absolutely everyone to their feet. As you know, the first verse of the song is a gentle, melodic ballad.

When you were young
And your heart was an open book
You used to say live and let live
You know you did
You know you did
You know you did
But if this ever changin' world
In which we live in
Makes you give in and cry…

But with the chorus a pyrotechnic display shook the arena. I was sitting 30 rows back but could still feel the heat on my face and one hour later my ears were still ringing. It was FANTASTIC!

So, turn up your speakers and revel!

Live and Let Die

Hey Jude (The Beatles song)

When John Lennon left his wife Cynthia to live with Yoko Ono, Paul wrote a song “Hey, Julian” as a message of encouragement to a little 5-year old boy in the midst of a difficult separation and divorce. The title was later changed to "Hey Jules," then finally "Hey Jude," because it was thought Jude was a stronger sounding name.

Hey Jude

Hey Jude, don't make it bad

Take a sad song and make it better

Remember to let her into your heart

Then you can start to make it better

Hey Jude, don't be afraid

You were made to go out and get her

The minute you let her under your skin

Then you begin to make it better

And anytime you feel the pain, hey Jude, refrain

Don't carry the world upon your shoulders

For well you know that it's a fool who plays it cool

By making his world a little colder

Nah nah nah nah nah nah nah nah nah

Hey Jude, don't let me down

You have found her, now go and get her

Remember to let her into your heart

Then you can start to make it better

So let it out and let it in, hey Jude, begin

You're waiting for someone to perform with

And don't you know that it's just you, hey Jude, you'll do

The movement you need is on your shoulder

Nah nah nah nah nah nah nah nah nah yeah

Hey Jude, don't make it bad

Take a sad song and make it better

Remember to let her under your skin

Then you'll begin to make it better

Better better better better better better, oh

Nah nah nah nah nah nah, nah nah nah, hey Jude

(and on and on and on)

The End?

This was the end. The last song. And Paul left the stage. What a fitting end to an amazing 2 ½ hour concert.

But wait…there’s more. About one minute later Paul returned to the stage exclaiming “They told me you want to keep going!” And yes, we did!

Encore

  • Yesterday (The Beatles song)
  • Hi, Hi, Hi (Wings song)
  • Birthday (The Beatles song)

  • Helter Skelter

McCartney has admitted that some of his music was influenced by the grunge sound born in Seattle. Is it any coincidence that in the city of Seattle Krist Novoselic (bass guitarist of Nirvana) would appear on stage with Paul to perform a thundering rendition of this classic?

  • Golden Slumbers (The Beatles song)
  • Carry That Weight (The Beatles song)
  • The End (The Beatles song)

And it was the end. But for three amazing hours we heard the Paul McCartney of yesterday explain a bit of his past. But he also gave us a glimpse of the artist that evolved through the years and will be in the future.

Encore

  • Yesterday (The Beatles song)
  • Hi, Hi, Hi (Wings song)
  • Birthday (The Beatles song)

  • Helter Skelter


© 2016 Linda Lum

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment
    • Carb Diva profile imageAUTHOR

      Linda Lum 

      2 years ago from Washington State, USA

      Bravewarrior - So glad that you stuck around and made it to the end of this hub. It was fun to put together--I still can't believe that I actually got to see Paul McCartney perform live. It's something I will never forget. I am glad you enjoyed.

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 

      2 years ago from Central Florida

      I was excited when I saw this title, Diva. I love music and behind-the-scenes looks at the artists we admire. It sounds like you had a blast at the concert. I can't believe Paul's 73 and still going as strong as he is!

      I knew "Hey Jude" was written for Julian when he was little (so was Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds - based on a drawing Julian did when he was little for a girl named Lucy). But no matter how I try to re-interpret the words, it still sounds like a song about shooting up.

      I really enjoyed this article, Diva. I took me three tries during lunch hours to get through it all. So glad I did!

    • Carb Diva profile imageAUTHOR

      Linda Lum 

      2 years ago from Washington State, USA

      Lawrence - That is what impressed me to much. He does give back, knowing that if not for his fans he would be....? Do be sure to turn up the volume and be prepared to be wowed.

    • lawrence01 profile image

      Lawrence Hebb 

      2 years ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

      Wow! This was amazing! Sir Paul may be a billionaire and may have been knighted by the Queen but he's never forgotten his roots.

      I'm gonna go home and play the clip on my laptop!

      Loved this

      Lawrence

    • Carb Diva profile imageAUTHOR

      Linda Lum 

      2 years ago from Washington State, USA

      Thank you Eric. I'm surprised at how much traffic this is getting today. I guess people enjoy music even more than eating (LOL). I pray you are well.

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 

      2 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Wow you sure know how to share an amazing experience. It was nice to learn more and visit the past of the great artist that influenced so many.

    • Carb Diva profile imageAUTHOR

      Linda Lum 

      2 years ago from Washington State, USA

      Kaili, you're right--it doesn't seem real. I can't say that it was on my bucket list (I don't even HAVE a list) but as soon as I heard about the concert, I knew that I HAD to get tickets. So glad that I did. Thanks for sharing and for your support.

    • Kaili Bisson profile image

      Kaili Bisson 

      2 years ago from Canada

      Oh wow, you must still be pinching yourself. He is a treasure, that's for sure. Just love him. Thank you for putting this wonderful hub together...sharing!

    • Carb Diva profile imageAUTHOR

      Linda Lum 

      2 years ago from Washington State, USA

      Hi Rachel - I agree with you. Paul was (and still is) my favorite (he's the cute one). I'm glad this brought back good memories for you.

    • Rachel L Alba profile image

      Rachel L Alba 

      2 years ago from Every Day Cooking and Baking

      Hi Carb Diva, Just the name Paul McCartney brings back memories of high school. I graduated in 1966 and the Beatles were very popular then. Of course, Paul McCartney was my favorite. I never knew that the song Hey Jude was supposed to be Hey Jules and was about John's son. Very interesting. Thanks for sharing.

    • Carb Diva profile imageAUTHOR

      Linda Lum 

      2 years ago from Washington State, USA

      Good morning Bill. The Beatles in '65 cannot compare with Paul in 2016. He has grown so much as an artist and a person. I am glad that you enjoyed this one.

    • Carb Diva profile imageAUTHOR

      Linda Lum 

      2 years ago from Washington State, USA

      Thank you Jodah. It was something I will never forget (barring dementia, of course). I am glad that you enjoyed it.

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 

      2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Well hooray for you! I would have used the word "privileged" as well. I saw the Beatles in '65 in Seattle....one of the highlights of my life.

      Happy Wednesday, Linda, and Happy Cooler Weather!

    • Jodah profile image

      John Hansen 

      2 years ago from Queensland Australia

      Wow, what an experience...a Sir Paul McCartney concert! This is a wonderful hub, Linda, packed with great information, song lyrics and videos. I can feel your passion in every word. Well done.

    • Carb Diva profile imageAUTHOR

      Linda Lum 

      2 years ago from Washington State, USA

      Flourish - You are a music-lover if ever there was one, and so your comments mean a great deal to me. I agree that Paul McCartney's depth as a composer and certainly as a musician (electric and acoustic guitar, bass guitar, percussion, piano, keyboard) grew tremendously after The Beatles. He was such a major influence in the Fab Four--I wonder what they would have sounded like years later if the group had stayed together.

      I also agree with you about the love between Paul and Linda. It brings tears to my eyes--you can't listen to "Maybe I'm Amazed" and not be left gasping for breath. It is such an amazing testament of his love and devotion to her. Did you know that he recorded it in a studio outside of their home, and he performed every part--guitar, drums, keyboard, etc. on his own? He wanted to do all of it for her, totally for her. ...I can't imagine being loved like that.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 

      2 years ago from USA

      Your enthusiasm is contagious. The way you described your experience was exquisite. I prefer McCartney's classic songs to any of the Beattles' work. The love story between him and Linda was beautiful.

    • Carb Diva profile imageAUTHOR

      Linda Lum 

      2 years ago from Washington State, USA

      Hi Lions44. Believe it or not this was my very first concert--and I remember hearing The Beatles when they appeared on the Ed Sullivan Show. Somehow, I just knew that I HAD to be a part of this. It was that important. I'm so glad that I did.

      Thank you for your support.

    • lions44 profile image

      CJ Kelly 

      2 years ago from Auburn, WA

      You had me at McCartney. Great job. Sharing everywhere.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)