Paul McCartney: I Could Have Died At Beatles Gigs

20 June 2018, 20:30 | Updated: 20 June 2018, 20:31

Sir Paul McCartney, 2017
Sir Paul McCartney, 2017. Picture: Gustavo Caballero/Getty Images

The legend tells Radio X’s Gordon Smart all about his worst gig… plus, how he came up with the title of his brand new album.

Sir Paul McCartney has revealed how some of his worst gigs were in his early Beatle days… and that he often risked life and limb playing with the band.

Speaking to Radio X’s Gordon Smart, the former Beatle recalled that the legendary Liverpool venue The Cavern was a risky place to play.

He explained: “The early days tend to be the worst… In the Cavern, the condensation from the sweat from people would get into the amps.

“We didn’t get electrocuted, we never even knew about that! You just used to lick your finger and hit the mike quick! And if you didn’t get a belt, you’d probably be alright.”

But the star - who has just released a brand new double A-side called I Don’t Know and Come On To Me to celebrate his 76th birthday - admitted that his most embarrassing moment at a gig came in 2010.

He revealed: “We played the Apollo in New York, the great, great Apollo and we were so chuffed because it’s like a sacred place to us.

“We were doing a tribute, a song called Hitch Hike, which is a Marvin Gaye song. It’s going great - all these famous people in the audience - there’s Keith Richards, there’s Howard Stern, there’s Tony Bennett… Chris Rock…t here’s like millions of people there and suddenly there’s this almighty noise!”

Gordon Smart and Paul McCartney
Gordon Smart and Paul McCartney. Picture: Radio X

Paul explained that the show was interrupted by a horrible noise from the PA. “The guy on the monitors was panicking,” he went on. “At this great gig that we really wanted to go well, there’s this unholy noise so I had to cover. And I was just chatting to the audience ‘hey, good to see Tony Bennett’s here, come on up here Tony – you can sing!’”

McCartney has just announced the release of his 17th solo album in the shape of Egypt Station, which is to be released on 7 September. It’s his first new album since 2013’s NEW and has been produced (apart from one track) by Greg Kurstin who has done the business for Foo Fighters and Liam Gallagher.


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