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Mull of Kintyre

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Wings
"Mull of Kintyre" is a popular 1977 song by former Beatle Paul McCartney and his band Wings. The song was written by McCartney and bandmate Denny Laine in tribute to the picturesque Kintyre peninsula in Argyll and Bute, Scotland, where McCartney had owned a home and recording studio since the late 1960s.

The song was Wings' biggest hit in the United Kingdom where it became Christmas number one, and was the first single to sell over two million copies in the UK.[1][2]

History Edit

The lyrics of the first verse, also used as the repeating chorus, are an ode to the area's natural beauty and sense of home:

Mull of Kintyre
Oh mist rolling in from the sea,
My desire
Is always to be here
Oh Mull of Kintyre
McCartney explained how the song came into being:
Leftquote
I certainly loved Scotland enough, so I came up with a song about where we were living; an area called Mull of Kintyre. It was a love song really, about how I enjoyed being there and imagining I was travelling away and wanting to get back there.[3]
Rightquote

"Mull of Kintyre" was recorded in August 1977 in London, during a break in recording the London Town album caused by Linda McCartney's advanced pregnancy, which led to the departure of Jimmy McCulloch and Joe English from Wings.[Bagpipes] from Kintyre's local Campbeltown] Pipe Band were included as a prominent part of the recording. "Mull of Kintyre" and "Girls' School" (a rocker that had been previously recorded for London Town) were released as a double A-sided single on 11 November 1977, independently of the album.

Success Edit

The song's broad appeal was maximised by its pre-Christmas release and it became a Christmas number one single in the UK, spending 9 weeks at the top of the charts. It also became a massive international hit, dominating the charts in Australia and many other countries over the holiday period. It went on to become the first single to sell over two million copies in the UK, earning McCartney the first ever 'rhodium disc' and becoming the UK's best-selling single of all-time (eclipsing The Beatles' own "She Loves You") until overtaken by Band Aid's "Do They Know It's Christmas?" in 1984 (which also featured McCartney on the B-Side). The song remains the UK's best-selling completely non-charity single. (|Queen's "Bohemian Rhapsody" has sold more in its two releases, but the profits of the 1991 release went to charity.) [4]

The millionth copy of the disk sold in the UK included a special certificate. It was sold to David Ackroyd, who was presented with a gold disk of the single by Denny Laine.[5]

However, one place where the song was not a hit was the United States, where the flipside "Girls' School" received more airplay and reached #33 on the Billboard Hot 100 while "Mull of Kintyre" only managed to reach #45 on the Easy Listening chart. As a consequence, McCartney has not played "Mull of Kintyre" during his subsequent concert tours of America, only adding it back on forays into Canad], most recently on July 11, 2009, at a concert in Halifax, Nova Scotia, accompanied by the 78th Highlanders (Halifax Citadel) Pipe Band.

The song was adopted soon after release by fans of several popular football clubs in the United Kingdom and is still sung during games, most notably since the 1970s by fans of Nottingham Forest F.C.; the song's lyrics were adapted for the now firmly established crowd favourite 'City Ground'. The adapted lyrics read:

"City Ground, Oh mist rolling in from the Trent, my desire, is always to be here, oh City Ground"

The song was also sung at the Birmingham Heart Beat Charity Concert 1986 by Denny Laine.

The song was also parodied as "Mull of Timperley" by comedian Frank Sidebottom.

Cover versionsEdit

[shley MacIsaac covered the song on his self-titled 2003 album with vocals from Dallas Smith of the band Default. Celtic Thunder covered the song on their Act Two album.

The tune was used in 1992 for the song "Valley Floyd Road" which was written for Charlton Athletic F.C. in celebration of their return to their home ground The Valley.[citation needed]

Personnel Edit

Paul McCartney & WINGS - Mull Of Kintyre (1977)-004:40

Paul McCartney & WINGS - Mull Of Kintyre (1977)-0

Paul McCartney & WINGS - Mull Of Kintyre (1977)

ReferencesEdit

  1. nme.com/artists/paul-mccartney
  2. Top 100 singles of all time in the UK
  3. “Wingspan”. p129
  4. Best-selling UK singles chart.
  5. "Mull of Kintyre" article, RockAndPopShop.com. Retrieved 28 June 2007.

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