re-release of this album some 25 years on is somewhat interesting
from a personal point of view, as this was the first album I ever
bought, shortly after ISO's original release date, for the sum
of £5.00; Big money in 1973, let me tell you!
Paul McCartney himself has said "I think that there will
be a lot of 'Wings' stuff rediscovered in years to come."
Well now is a good time to do just that with the re-release of
the 25th Anniversary 2 CD edition of the 1973 LP 'Band On The
Undoubtedly Paul's finest album to date, unveiled during December
of '73, it arrived some three and a half years after The Beatles
final album, and yet it was already Paul's fifth LP, and his third
Paul couldn't top his work with The Beatles, but occasionally
he came close. It's worth noting that 'Wings' had a longer recording
career than The Beatles. As part of his post Beatles success he
scored Twelve Top Ten singles, and Eight Top Ten albums than by
any bands standards that is a spectacular achievement.
Disc 1: Is a newly remastered version
of the original U.S. edition of the album. Although against Paul's
wishes at the time the U.S. album included the single "Helen
Wheels" which was named after Paul's land rover!
running order for Disc One is:
BAND ON THE RUN
LET ME ROLL IT
PICASSO'S LAST WORDS (DRINK
NINETEEN HUNDRED AND
Disc 2: Is a newly produced additional
CD which relives the period when the album was made and includes
the voices of Paul and Linda, Dustin Hoffman, and the celebrities
who appear on the cover. This disc has a running time in excess
of 50 minutes. CD 2 also includes previously unreleased versions
of some 'Band On The Run' tracks.
On dialogue track 18, Dustin Hoffman gives us the background to
"Picasso's Last Words" (Drink To Me), whilst having
dinner with the McCartneys Hoffman asks Paul, "How do you
write songs?", Paul replied "They just come out of the
air" Dustin asks "Can you write them about anything?"
Paul: "Yeah". Dustin: "Try this" and Hoffman
points to an obituary of Pablo Picasso and reads from it Picasso's
last words which were: Drink to me, drink to my health, you know
I can't drink anymore.
Paul said, "Well, you could possibly write a song about that."
After a moment he began singing it. Hoffman jumped up shouting
"Look, he's doing it!!" Hoffman rates being present
at the writing of 'Picasso's Last Words' "Right under childbirth
in terms of the great events of my life"
Sleeve notes for the first album are split into two sections,
part one is based on the recording of the album and is written
by Mark Lewisohn who covers the background leading up to and the
actual recording of the album in Lagos, Nigeria. Paul had gone
to Lagos after a typically 'well thought out' McCartney decision.
After 'Wings' British tour ended in August Paul wanted to record
again, but said he was getting bored with London and that he and
Linda wanted to go someplace warm where they could combine vacation
and work and generally have a good time.
Paul had asked EMI where they owned studios in warm climes. The
list included Bombay, Rio De Janeiro, Peking and Lagos.
For Paul, the word Lagos conjured up images of lazy days, hazy
days, hot tropical days, days of ceaseless music and buzzy rhythms
on the West Coast of Africa. He envisioned lying on the beach
all day doing nothing. and recording at night but. as he noted
later, it didn't turn out quite like that!
On The Run
A Who's, Who.
1 Michael Parkinson
2 Paul McCartney
3 Kenny Lynch
4 James Coburn
5 Clement Freud
6 Linda McCartney
7 Christopher Lee
8 Denny Lane
9 John Center
BAND ON THE RUN
U.K. 7th December, 1973 - No. 1
USA 5th December, 1973 - No. 1
In the U.S. the album was Number 1 on 3 separate occasions, a
precedent setting achievement.
Helen Wheels/Country Dreamer
U.K. 26th October, 1973 - No. 12
USA 12th November, 1973 - No. 10
Executive Honorary Members:- Sir
Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr. Executive Patrons:- Sir George Martin,
Julian Lennon. Patron:- Astrid Kirchherr. Honorary Members:- Cynthia
Lennon, Pete Best, Yoko Ono, Gay Byrne, Geoff Rhind, Gerry Marsden, Allan
Williams, Richard Lester, Harry Prytherch, (The Original Quarrymen):-
Rod Davis, Colin Hanton, Eric Griffiths, Len Garry, Pete Shotton.
E-mail us at: beatlesireland(at)utvinternet.com (Please note: To stop spam please copy email address and replace (at) with @)