Listen back to Paul McCartney’s interview with WXPN’s Helen Leicht

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HelenPaulWith the announcement of his brand new song called “New” and a forthcoming album of the same name, Sir Paul McCartney called WXPN today for an interview with mid-day show host Helen Leicht; you can listen to an archive of the entire interview below.

Their conversation began by talking about New, which will see a U.S. release on Concord Records on Tuesday, October 15th.

McCartney recorded the new album with a team of heavy-hitting producers: Paul Epworth (known for his work with pop sensation Adele), Ethan Johns (he’s recorded Ryan Adams, Ray LaMontagne and Kings of Leon), Mark Ronson (popular for his work with Amy Winehouse as well as his solo albums) and Giles Martin (who staged The BeatlesLove show). As McCartney explained in the interview:

“The idea was to go do one track for each one  and decide who would be the best for the album. I ended up falling for them all. We had such a good time in different ways. Ethan would be a little more acoustically leaning, Mark would be a little more R&B. They each had a different approach, so I ended up working with them all.”

Conversation turned to songwriting in general, and what keeps him at it. McCartney called it “an eternal fascination.”

“It really is just down to the fact that I love it. … If you said to me now that, okay, this afternoon, you’re just going to sit down and write a song. That wouldn’t depress me or frighten me, that would really excite me. I’d go ‘Oh, yeah, great great great.’And then taking it into a recording studio…and eventually you take it out on the road, and you play it for real people. That is the ultimate excitement. If you look at that whole line of stuff, it’s pretty cool.”

On revisiting his Beatles-era music when performing live, McCartney likened it to being somebody else reviewing a young man’s work. “I’m listening to myself as a 24 year old. As I’m singing the songs, I’m reviewing the lyrics and thinking ‘This kid wasn’t bad!’” Some moments, like “Being for the Benefit of Mr. Kite,” are downright challenging (“It’s contrapuntal, man!”). When Leicht pointed out that today is the anniversary of The Beatles’ final show in San Francisco’s Candlestick Park, McCartney began to reminisce, but with a footing in the present.

“It is great to look at the old newsreels. You go, oh my God, is that really me? Obviously it was another time, and yes, we were younger. It was very exciting in its own way. The 60s were very exciting times, and I meet a lot of younger people who say ‘Wow, I wish I’d been there.’ I say ‘Well, no, don’t wish that, just be here now and enjoy this one, because there’s plenty of cool stuff going on now.’”

Listen to Leicht’s interview with Paul McCartney in its entirety in the player below. To hear his new single “New,” go here.

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  • Dave Ott

    Great interview, and I love the photo. I’m gonna guess 80s for that one, am I right? (Helen’s hair and dress remind me of a girlfriend from 1982.) Gotta love Paul continuing to record and tour, so many great songs and memories for so many of us. Here’s to many, many more!

  • Barbara

    Thank You, Helen you did a great interview with Paul. Your question where right on.
    All the best to you Helen.

  • pjmccarthy63

    what a great interview. not sure how you maintained your composure, i am certain i wouldn’t have been able to

  • Texan6

    Paul is a genius, and brilliant musician. His talent is such a gift to this world and to me! Thank you Paul for continuing to bless and entertain us with your amazing gift of music. You are Timeless!

  • Chelsea

    Love you Sir Paul! <3

  • John F

    Paul is the greatest living song writer

  • sir EDMUND

    we love his stuff,,,reverbnation.com/therockaways

  • Mauro Pellegrino

    BRAVA Helen !! Wonderful PAUL !!!

  • Terry

    Paul is one of the greatest song writers

  • Matt T.

    really nice interview. somehow, Paul manages to please his audience and challenge himself at the same time. It’s usually one or the other with most artists.

  • Kevin Mannarino

    First complete all new original song album in a long time. I can’t wait!…Awsome performer, .But!..Better writer and singer. Glad he is doing what he loves, “Performing” .VERY happy he found time with his busy schedule to make a new album. Love ya Love ya!!!