Classic Rock Review

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Paul McCartney & Wings – Band On The Run (1973)


Paul and Linda combine well on “Bluebird”, a song that contains a warm sax solo. This gives way to the fun that is “Mrs. Vandebilt”, one of those songs that just stays in your mind with its hint of Lagos rhythms. “Let Me Roll It” has Paul sounding a lot like John.

The lovely, uplifting, “Mamunia” which means ‘safe haven’ in Moroccan, opened side two.
“No Words”, co-written with Denny Laine who had apparently started the song, maintains the high quality.

The background behind the next track “Picasso’s Last Words (Drink To Me)” has been told many times. Hopefully it is true as it makes for a nice story. When Picasso died his last words had been reported in the news. Actor Dustin Hoffman brought this to the attention of Paul. Hoffman then sat back in wonder as Paul put the words to music, writing the song on the spot. Several sections cleverly blend to make the whole, it was a typical act of McCartney genius.

“Nineteen Hundred And Eighty Five” ends the album with a full-on orchestra before briefly reprising the title track. In doing so it brings it all nicely full circle whilst reminding you of the tracks that have gone before. It made for a quick return for the needle back to the beginning again.

Band On The Run represented a conclusive return to form for Paul McCartney. The songs contained are well chosen, remarkably catchy, and even now, thirty five years on, are still memorable. It was exactly the right album for Paul at exactly the right time, both silencing any doubters, and satisfying his many admirers.

To celebrate the passing of thirty five years, why not go off and play the album. You’ll find it next to Tubular Bells.

May 12, 2010 Posted by | Paul McCartney Band On The Run | | Leave a comment