The Long And Winding Road To ‘Band On The Run’

Macca's post Beatles albums
The Long And Winding Road To ‘Band On The Run’
As part of Clash Magazine's lengthy interview with Paul McCartney about Wings' classic 'Band On The Run' album (read it here), we took a look at the albums McCartney released following The Beatles' split in the run up to 'Band On The Run'.

Read on for our brief guide to McCartney's early 70s efforts, with wife Linda and Wings, 'McCartney', 'Ram', 'Wild Life', 'Red Rose Speedway' and 'Band On The Run'.

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‘McCartney’
Paul McCartney
Released: April 1970



Debut solo recorded amidst the deterioration of The Beatles. Macca plays all instruments himself. The impressive ‘Maybe I’m Amazed’ overshadows Beatles rejects ‘Junk’, ‘Teddy Boy’, and the throwaway yet charming filler.

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‘Ram’
Paul and Linda McCartney
Released: May 1971



Savaged on release for its whimsical nature, ‘Ram’ has over time been praised for its melodic brilliance. The pointed Lennon references of ‘Too Many People’, the ambitious ‘Uncle Albert/Admiral Halsey’ and the rocking ‘Smile Away’ form a misunderstood pop gem.

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‘Wild Life’
Wings
Released: December 1971



The first album credited to Wings, ‘Wild Life’ was an attempt to recreate the studio vitality of the augmented band on first takes. The results, unfortunately, were deemed lightweight: Rolling Stone calling it “trivial and unaffecting”.

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‘Red Rose Speedway’
Paul McCartney and Wings
Released: April 1973



Though invigorated by his first live shows in six years, the production and hollow intentions of ‘Red Rose Speedway’ incurred MOR comparisons. Its highs were few and its lows were many. McCartney was clearly in search of clarity and direction.

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‘Band On The Run’
Paul McCartney and Wings
Released: December 1973



The consistent and genuine album so desperately needed finally arrived in ‘Band On The Run’. The mini-suite of the title track, the rocking ‘Jet’, the Lennon-ish ‘Let Me Roll It’, the sweet harmonies of ‘Mamunia’, the Beatle-esque ‘Picasso’s Last Words’ - this was the restoration of Paul’s reputation as a world class songwriter.

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Words by Simon Harper

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