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It Really Is His Birthday, Too, Yeah!

The Art of McCartney

Today is Paul McCartney’s birthday so to celebrate Quirky T listened to the two CD tribute to him called “The Art of McCartney”. I was surprised in November 2014 when I saw a side of a building advertisement in New York City for this CD set of cover songs. I had never heard of this project but being a Paul McCartney fan, I had to listen to it. I don’t like cover versions of my favorite musicians but I was pleasantly satisfied by this collection. The songs are a mixture of Beatles’ songs (17), Wings’ songs (14), and solo songs (11). Obviously, I knew all The Beatles’ songs but I wasn’t familiar with 10 of the post Beatles’ songs.  I also wasn’t familiar with all the artists on the CDs which are advertised as “The Songs of Paul McCartney Sung by the World’s Greatest Artists”. I think this is a bit of hyperbole since if they are all that great, I would have known all of them. I didn’t know 13 of the 38 artists/bands. That’s almost one third! The majority of the artists and bands where popular in the 1970’s which makes sense since most of the Paul McCartney songs are from that time.

 

I tended to really like the songs that sounded the most similar to Paul McCartney such as:

  1. “Maybe I’m Amazed” and “Live and Let Die” sung by Billy Joel

2.   “Junk” sung by Jeff Lynne

3.    “Jet” sung by Robin Zander and Rick Nielsen of Cheap Trick

4.     “Eleanor Rigby” sung by Alice Cooper

 

I also liked these versions of Paul McCartney songs:

  1. “Band on the Run” sung by Heart
  2. “Junior’s Farm” sung by Steve Miller
  3. “My Love” sung by Harry Connick, Jr.
  4. “Let Me Roll It” sung by Paul Rodgers
  5. “Helter Skelter” sung by Roger Daltrey
  6. “Helen Wheels” sung by Def Leppard

 

In keeping with the nice, non-bashing tone of The Guitar Train, I won’t write about which artists’ renditions I did not like except to mention that I think their distinctive voices killed the great (Beatles) songs they sang.

 

Interestingly, Paul McCartney’s son, James, appears on this tribute playing piano with the band, The Cure. They did a nice version of one of my favorite Beatles’ songs, “Hello Goodbye”.

I also found it interesting that one of the songs covered, “Come and Get It” while written by Paul is more associated with the band who recorded it, Badfinger. I thought the solo song “So Bad” sounded like a Michael Jackson song which is interesting since it appears on Paul McCartney’s 1983 album “Pipes of Peace” which also includes two duets with Michael Jackson – “Say Say Say” and “The Man”.

 

Overall, I enjoyed these tribute CDs. The songs showed the diversity and range of Paul McCartney’s music from “When I’m 64” to “Venus and Mars/Rock Show”. The fact that a variety of artists from different genres of music were needed to do the covers illustrates the diversity of Paul’s songs. It really made me appreciate the musical genius of Paul McCartney and made me seek out the original versions of the Wings and solo songs that I was not familiar with before. For more information on this CD set, check out the website – http://www.theartofmccartney.com/artists

 

Guitar Train passengers, which Paul McCartney songs would you like to hear covered by which artists?

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4 thoughts on “It Really Is His Birthday, Too, Yeah!

  1. Although Roger Daltrey covered it on the album, I think a version of ‘Helter Skelter’ involving the whole of The Who would sound really cool! Considering that the song was actually inspired by one of their hits (‘I Can See For Miles’), I think that Townshend’s guitar, Entwistle’s bass, Daltrey’s vocals and, of course, Moon’s drums could put an interesting — and equally heavy — spin on it. I also think that Led Zeppelin would do a good job at covering it…
    As for other non-‘Helter Skelter’ McCartney songs, I think I’d like to hear contemporary indie-folk band Fleet Foxes do covers of ‘Blackbird’ and ‘Mother Nature’s Son’, and maybe even ‘Fool on the Hill’.
    Great post! I shall have to listen to ‘The Art of McCartney’! 🙂

  2. I hadn’t heard that cure cover before, nice!

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