Paul McCartney Issues 50th Anniversary ‘Wild Life’ LP On Remastered Vinyl
Out today (February 4th) in commemoration of the 50th anniversary of Wings‘ debut album, Paul McCartney has issued a new half-speed mastering vinyl edition of Wild Life. The new version of the album was cut using a high resolution transfer of the original 1971 master tapes.
Today at 12 noon ET, fans are urged to log in to Spotify or Apple Music for McCartney’s official Wild Life listening party, where people from around the globe will be sharing memories and their personal stories about the classic album.
Wild Life, which was McCartney’s third post-Beatles solo set, was released on December 7th, 1971 and topped out at Number 10 on the Billboard 200.
The tracklisting to ‘Wild Life’ is:
Side One: “Mumbo,” “Bip Bop,” “Love Is Strange,” and “Wild Life.”
Side Two: “Some People Never Know,” “I Am Your Singer,” “Bip Bop (Link),” “Tomorrow,” “Dear Friend,” and “Mumbo (Link).”
McCartney looked back on Wild Life and posted some recollections on his official website (PaulMcCartney.com), touching upon the rough edges found on the album and the sound of a band trying to find its footing: “I wanted to try and relearn what it is to be in a band. So yeah, we just kind of threw it together. And then the decision to have Linda in the band singing was a really tough one, because she’s never sung professionally. . . But it was: whatever we do, we’re not going to do what the Beatles did. . . Well, we followed what the early Beatles did which was form a band of people who couldn’t play very well, couldn’t write very well, and just do it a lot until it gets good!”
He went on to touch upon the album’s closer and very open letter to estranged partner John Lennon: “And then with ‘Dear Friend’ that’s sort of me talking to John after we’d had all the sort of disputes about the Beatles break up. I find it very emotional when I listen to it now. I have to sort of choke it back. I remember when I heard the song recently. . . in the car. And I thought, ‘Oh God.’ That lyric: ‘Really truly, young and newly wed.’ Listening to that was like, ‘Oh my God, it’s true!’ I’m trying to say to John, Look, y’know, it’s all cool. Have a glass of wine. Let’s be cool.’ And luckily we did get it back together, which was like a great source of joy because it would have been terrible if he’d been killed as things were at that point and I’d never got to straighten it out with him. This was me reaching out. So, I think it’s very powerful in some very simple way. But it was certainly heartfelt.”
In early-1972 Paul and Linda McCartney spoke about their first dip into dealing with animal issues on the Wings album: “(Paul): We don’t, sort of, like, stand up for, like, millions of causes and stuff, y’know? Conservation and stuff and wild life — we like to sing about that. The first songs we’ve done, which is ‘saying something,’ as you say, y’know, like that, is ‘Wild Life.’ And that just says that, y’know, the wild state is a good state. . . (Linda): Why are we getting rid of it? (Paul): So, why are we getting rid of it? Let’s not. And whatever happened to it? And the animals are in zoos instead of just actually, sort of, running, like they’re supposed to.”
Back in 1984 during a chat with Oprah Winfrey, Linda McCartney spoke about how it was Paul that pulled her into making music with him: “It’s been his doing. I mean I would never have thought to play piano — although I love music. He said, ‘There’s middle C’ — let’s be in a group, c’mon.’ I never sang, or anything, y’know, except in high school. But, I think he wanted someone he liked with him — it wasn’t my ‘talent.’ I mean, I never thought I’d be writing songs and getting pleasure out of the piano, ’cause as a kid, I hated piano lessons. Now, I sit down and if I’m in a bad mood, I play a few sad chords, and I think — ‘This is really good.’ (Laughter).”