I’ve said it before and I know I’ll say it again: I’d love to love Paul McCartney. I’d love to worship the very ground upon which he places his no-doubt gold-plated feet, but he makes it so hard.
I’ve said for many years now, being the sort that cares, that Paul is coolest when he’s absolutely not trying to be cool. When he is trying (which is most of the time), he comes across as a desperate, middle-aged man with a terrible dye job who is intent on making us all think he’s the coolest man who ever lived.
And we all know the coolest man who ever lived was Dean Martin.
Seriously, man! What is The Mac’s problem? We’ve done so much for him. We tolerated Wings. Hell, some of us even LIKED Wings! We accepted Linda (only eventually, in some cases) because it was clear she was a Cool Chick who he adored. Couldn’t play keyboards really, but she was cool nonetheless, and I liked the Linda McCartney’s Ploughman’s Pie before they changed to Definitely No GM Food Here recipies and it tasted foul.
I’m getting off the subject again. Paul McCartney is not an overtly cool man. He has always been too much of An Entertainer. If he had Astaire feet, he would’ve been a Song and Dance Man. If he’d been born seventy years before he was, he’d have been one of Music Hall’s greatest. If he’d have been born in the seventies, he’d either be Robbiefuckingwilliams or Will Young. Only good. Paul McCartney has always been too much of a “Love me, please love me!” kind of man, and that’s not a bad thing really. We do love him. But he’s not cool like He Who Shall Not Be Named But Got Gunned Down On His Own Doorstep Nearly Twenty Five Years Ago.
Paul McCartney is not cool, but we love him and I so wish he’d understand that and just relax. I wish he could accept the hand he’s been dealt. I mean, let’s think about this logically:
- He’s a Beatle. OK, ex-Beatle.
- He’s the closest thing pop music has to an actual saint (fuck off Bono. Try harder next time)
- He’s actually a good guy. A hard-nosed businessman when it comes down to it, but a good guy.
- If he had any more money, he’d have to buy that big vault Scrooge McDuck had in Duck Tales just to hold it all.
- He’s an ex-Beatle.
- He’s an ex-Beatle that wasn’t gunned down or stabbed.
- He got knighted before it became de rigeur to have a pop star in the list each time and Mick Jagger proved what a farcical concept giving these things to rock stars is.
- He is, let’s face it, one of the greatest composers ever to have bothered spanking a piano or strumming a guitar.
So, you’re Paul McCartney. You have these Eight Fabulous Things in your life. Are you happy? Are you buggery.
I’ve got so caught up in ranting about Paul (who, don’t get me wrong, I do love) that I’ve forgotten to mention the inspiration for today’s festival of Maccabashing. Maccachiding, really.
The album the song is on isn’t even out until September. He likes to get his publicity machine in gear early, I guess.
Don’t get me wrong, I have little doubt that Paul was devastated by George’s death. These guys were friends. Friends. Only friends who care about each other snipe like they did back in the day so memorably during Let It Be. I don’t know that we could go so far as to call them brothers, but they were comrades-in-arms, the only ones who knew what it was like to be the others. Beatles-in-arms, I guess. If George’s death destroyed me, as it felt like it did, I can only imagine it did something far worse to Paul.
If George did help Paul write the song (and the lyrics mentioned in the article do sound very Harrisonian), then that’s fucking fantastic. Whether it’s really George, helping from On High, or the shadow of a memory of George in Paul’s own mind, it doesn’t matter. I can’t wait to hear the song now personally- I was always more a George girl than a Paul one.
But does this have to be turned around and twisted into news? Does it have to be used to kick-start the publicity for Another McCartney Moneyspinner. Boy has enough money and enough gold discs. I know he wants to remain popular and thus, relevant, but please.
There are some things you can use to sell your product. Your divorce, your separation, your drug habit, your new, much younger girlfriend/fiancee, someone else’s drug habit, your stint in rehab, how you feel now you’re clean, etc etc etc…
But please don’t use the death of someone you loved to do it. It smacks of desperation and nastiness. I have no doubt that George’s death hurt Paul a great deal, but can he not use it to sell records? Can he do it quietly? Because George’s death hurt us a great deal too, Paulie, and some of us find it disheartening and distasteful that you’d use it to sell records.