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Paul McCartney “seizes the day” with ‘McCartney III Imagined’

By Arianna Sergio You can’t call yourself a music connoisseur if you’ve never listened to Sir Paul McCartney. McCartney changed the music world forever when he emerged on the scene with his fellow Beatles bandmates—John Lennon, George Harrison, and Ringo Starr—and soon enough, Beatlemania swept the nation. With hits like “Can’t Buy Me Love,” “Hey Jude,” and “I Want to Hold Your Hand,” among many others, The Beatles were the biggest thing at the time and were unstoppable. That is, until McCartney famously announced that they were breaking up due to, “Personal differences, business differences, musical differences, but most of all because I [McCartney] have a better time with my family. Since then, he has had an outstanding solo career, releasing 26 studio albums. His newest album, McCartney III Imagined, is unlike anything he, or anyone else in the music industry, has ever done.  Of course, there are plenty of artists who do covers of other artists’ music, but other than McCartney, I have never seen another artist openly invite other artists to create new interpretations of their own compositions.

The holy trinity

McCartney III was released last December; this third installment follows his debut album McCartney, released a few months after The Beatles split, and McCartney II succeeding a decade later. This holy trinity is home-recorded and gives the listener an intimate look into McCartney’s psyche. It’s experimental and untapped territory.  Sure, he’s collaborated with Rihanna and Kanye West on “FourFiveSeconds,” but he’s never done anything like this. He gives each artist he collaborated with the creative freedom to put their personal touch on the song they perform of his, and “reimagine” it.  McCartney has been in the game for a long time, so bringing in some current, popular artists to cover his songs with him is revolutionary. More artists should take notes from him and follow in his suit. This is a great way for the younger generation to broaden their horizons and learn about classic artists and the older generation being educated about modern artists. It’s a win-win. 

Collaboration at its finest

McCartney first released this teaser, shocking fans across the board. What could these colorful dice mean? Seeing all these talented artists only piqued his fans' interest, and rightfully so.  One track on this album completely and utterly blows all the other songs out of the water. That song is Dominic Fike’s rendition of “The Kiss of Venus”. I’d be lying if I didn’t say that this song will go down in history as one of the best songs ever created. McCartney’s original version is a slow, acoustic ballad, but Fike took what McCartney said and truly made this song his own. He brings a fresh, vibrant, timely take on the song. With McCartney’s version once being focused on astrology—singing about the Sun and the planets—Fike changed a large chunk of the lyrics, shifting its focus from astrology to the divisiveness of the news today. Lyrics like,
Then I asked her, have you read the paper? (Okay)/People talking about which side they're taking/ And if you know, then, baby, what's your take on it?
really make the listener think about how divided our society is when it comes to the news and politics in general.  Taking this idea one step further, the music video was filmed at the printing press for The New York Times. Fike sings about this with such passion and personality. He proves on this song that, yet again, he is one of the greatest blessings of music today. Fike is the future of music, and he continues to execute every single song he is on flawlessly. 

Exploring different sounds

Besides Fike, McCartney collaborates with quite the repertoire of artists: Beck, Anderson .Paak, Phoebe Bridgers, St. Vincent, Khruangbin, Blood Orange, Ed O’Brien, Damon Albarn, Josh Homme, and 3D RDN.  “Find My Way” featuring Beck is a funky 70’s blast from the past. It’ll make you want to get up, put your dancing shoes on, and groove! Beck’s vocals drip down the synth and bass lines on this song and mesh extremely well with McCartney’s worn vocals. “Pretty Boys” featuring Khruangbin has that same vibey tone. Khruangbin’s soft vocals whispering the chorus are truly haunting and pull the listener in. 
People talking without no education, yeah/Look, go to college (College), go find your major (Major)/ Realize you're minor in the scheme of everything
“Slidin’' (EOB Remix) shows McCartney rock and roll like he’s never rocked and rolled before. This remix is everything I didn’t know I needed from McCartney. It’s fast-paced, upbeat, and catchy. The chorus, “I'm slidin', glidin' through the air/I can see my body through windows in my hair/ I'm slidin', glidin' through the air,” reflects the carefree tone of the song and encapsulates the feeling of not having a single care in the world and living life for what it is. A feeling similar to this is “Deep Deep Feeling,” (3D RDN Remix.) This 11 minute and 23-second song is the final song on the album. In its entirety, it’s a song you can just sit down, close your eyes to, and peacefully exist with.

Top tracks:

The Kiss of Venus Slidin’ Seize the Day

Recommended if you like:

The Rolling Stones Bob Dylan The Who
Sources: History, Spotify, Spotify, History, Spotify, Inlander, Spotify, Spotify, Spotify, Spotify, Instagram, YouTube Featured Image: Genius