By Nadia Noir
On August 10th, Paul McCartney will play Dodger Stadium for the first time ever since The Beatles‘ played their second to last live gig on August 28, 1966. The musical icon will play an epic three hour set including his solo stuff, his new stuff, and Beatles stuff.
The musical icon called in to Kevin & Bean and talked about his life as a Beatle, working with Dave Grohl for Sound City, and what goes into picking an expansive set that simultaneously allows him to pace himself.
Sir Paul McCartney, or as he joked to the Morning Show crew, “King McCartney,” is a humble, easy to talk to guy who says that it’s a little “freakish” that so many young fans are still into the Beatles despite them breaking up in 1970 and that the person who played Dodger Stadium 48 years ago “couldn’t have been him.”
Many things have changed since the Beatles performed, including the sound system. Being talented musicians and playing live in a stadium setting was pretty hard for the Beatles, which is one of the reasons that they let their “records do the touring” after playing live got on their “nerves a bit.” Even then, the Beatles’ show weren’t even that long.
“The joke is, I say to people, ‘Take a guess. How long did the Beatles play when the came onstage?’ Nobody guesses. I mean, we did about half-an-hour,” said McCartney. It was also thirty minutes where the guys were trading who sings the lead vocals. McCartney only sang for “five or ten minutes.” When Kevin & Bean joked that he should feel guilty about taking the money back then, McCartney laughing and said “No way.”
Money wasn’t enough to bring the Beatles back together for a reunion, though. McCartney said the group discussed the idea for fiscal reasons and got very “tempting” monetary offers, but that they decided they’d come “full circle” and why “spoil the whole thing.”
“We’ve been through all the sort of joys and the horrors of being in a band. We’ve done everything we’ve wanted to do and if we now sort of get back together again, it could fall flat,” recalled McCartney about the conversation. “We might not enjoy it, so why do it. As we say in England, ‘Leave ‘em laughing.’”
But most of the members of the band went on to have very successful solo careers, including McCartney who says the material he performs and the audiences help him last the whole way through his extensive sets. “I suddenly find myself on the last number going, ‘What happened?’ So, I just love it. I love to do it,” said McCartney effusively.
One reason why the audiences may respond the way they do, is that everyone loves McCartney. With a guitar given to him by Johnny Depp, McCartney wrote a song with Dave Grohl for Sound City and the other dudes in Nirvana without even know that he was at an unofficial reunion. Everyone just wants to work with him.
“In the middle of all that, I didn’t even know I was at a Nirvana reunion. I thought I was just jamming with a bunch of guys. It was only when I started hearing them talking, they said, ‘Hey. We haven’t done this in twenty years.’ I thought, ‘Hey, what are you talking about guys?’ We’re Nirvana. “Oh, ok. That’s pretty cool.”
Playing in Los Angeles also gives him the opportunity to have plenty of special guests.
“We’ve got loads of friends and that’s actually what makes it so great to come to LA. So, who knows? We might have them creeping up onstage unbeknownst to me,” quips McCartney.
Why? Because no one turns down the opportunity to play with a Beatle. And for this, McCartney is actually proud. He even says he wishes people would ask him a Beatles question at “dinner parties.”
“It’s like kind of talking about your college days when you’re kind of not at college anymore and there’s quite a few years gone by. With the Beatles, so much what we did was incredible. And I can talk like that because it’s over. It’s like looking at scrapbook.” McCartney starts listing them wistfully and after a short intake of breath, breaks the reverie of his nostalgia. “There’s so many great moments, that I actually like being reminded of them.”