The Lyrics by Paul McCartney review – the stories behind the songs

Saturday, November 20, 2021

If he hadn’t become a musician, Paul McCartney says, he would probably have been an English teacher. He has fond memories of his English teacher, Alan Durband, who studied with FR Leavis and taught the young Paul the value of close reading. When he wrote songs with John Lennon, the chords and melody came first. But the words mattered too. Where the straight-up, irony-free early lyrics wooed their audience through a flurry of pronouns – She Loves You, From Me to You, Please Please Me, etc – the later lyrics aspired to poetry.

Source: Blake Morrison/


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