Last week, during hectic preparations for a world tour that begins this week in Oslo, Paul McCartney took a 40-minute break from rehearsals in a studio near London to talk with Maclean’s Associate Editor Nicholas Jennings. Excerpts from their exchange:
On his decision to perform Beatles songs, some for the first time outside a studio, on the tour:
I’ve gone back over everything I’ve written, so the weight is towards Beatle songs this time. I’ve tried to pull out some of my best songs. But we don’t do Here, There and Everywhere, which I think is one of my best, and we don’t do Ob La Di Ob La Da— as of yet.
On his latest album, Flowers in the Dirt:
It’s an album I can actually be proud of. After you’ve made a lot of albums, it’s not always easy to come up with a fresh idea. I don't think I’d taken as much care as I’d wanted to on a couple of albums before this.
On his new songwriting partner, Elvis Costello:
He’s an opinionated git, if you ask me. But I can say that to him. He hates stuff with a passion. I would say he’s blinkered but that’s not giving him the benefit of the doubt. If you take the good side of it, he’s focused. I thought of blinkered as focused and we got on great. Like John [Lennon], Elvis has a tough exterior and a soft centre. And he’s also good with words.
On Albert Goldman’s controversial and critical 1988 biography of Lennon, The Lives of John Lennon:
On Chet Flippo's 1988 biography of McCartney, Yesterday:
It’s a bit flip, I think, a bit flippant. Actually, I haven’t read it. But I saw the last chapter and I started to smell a rat there. It goes: ’These days, McCartney is alone and virtually friendless.’ Well, I wish he’d been at our house last weekend when we had the 1950s party for my daughter [Stella]—the friends who dropped in and the 16 kids we had to breakfast the next day. It’s just insanity. We live a very gregarious—believe you me— type of life.
On media accounts of him as drug-addled:
It started with the pot bust [in Toyko in 1980]. But the press started thinking of drug parlors and white slavery. Then they started saying I had to be a bit funny, a bit flaky, a bit, well, dopey. And they had to put this character together with someone who’s been successful in business. So they started filling in the bits in between. Events get highly colored and you’re just this person in the middle of it who’s still pretty normal, really. I mean, most people I actually meet say, ‘How are you so sane after all that?’ □
Озарение уцелевшего На прошлой неделе, во время напряженной подготовки к мировому турне, которое начинается на этой неделе в Осло, Пол Маккартни сделал 40-минутный перерыв во время репетиции в студии под Лондоном, чтобы поговорить с младшим редактором Maclean’s Николасом Дженнингсом. Выдержки из их беседы: __________
Тут несколько неясно: ведь тот тур начинался в Скандинавии, но не в Осло...