What’s Wrong With That? I’d Like To Know…

(The following is reprinted from Dean’s Eclectic Notes from May 22, 2010)

“Dad, is it true that Paul McCartney was in another group before Wings?”
That’s a line out of Billy Crystal’s stand up act, but it still makes me smile.  A while back, a friend and I were out driving and listening to the classic rock station in Los Angeles (Hey, that WAS a while back!  Eventually, it went to all talk).  Anyway, he blurted out, “When the Beatles broke up, I think Paul’s music was way better than John’s!”  There was no argument to follow that declarative statement;  John Lennon was brilliant, but I was always in the Paul camp.  I definitely think of Paul McCartney & Wings when I think of great music from the seventies.  Of all the Beatles, Wings was the only permanent group to spin off the original, even if they disbanded after ten years.
So, I was reading one of my older editions of the Billboard Book Of Top 40 Hits, and as usual, I got lost in the pages.  I noticed that today in music history (05/22/1976), “Silly Love Songs” hit #1, and it was the one song that stayed in the Top 40 the longest.  This was after leaving Apple Records and signing to Capitol, billing themselves simply as Wings.  According to the book, the lineup changes were as follows:

Wings formed in 1971 with Linda McCartney (keyboards, backing vocals), Denny Laine of the Moody Blues (guitar) and Denny Seiwell (drums).  Henry McCullough (guitar joined in 1972).  Seiwell and McCullough left in 1973.  In 1975, Joe English (drums) and Jimmy McCulloch of Thunderclap Newman (guitar ) joined.  McCulloch died of heart failure on 9/27/79 (age 26).  Both English and McCullough left in 1977.  Wings officially disbanded in 1981.

Below is “Silly Love Songs” from Wings’ fifth album, Wings At the Speed Of Sound

Music critics constantly ripped Paul McCartney’s songwriting for being insubstantial, or as John Lennon put it, “Silly love songs…” So, Paul wrote this to answer his detractors. It scored big. His pen is all over the Wings catalog, along with Linda’s support. The songs are clever, heartfelt and satisfying. And what’s wrong with that? I’d like to know.

Be good out there,