Wings: “Live And Let Die” (1973)

George Martin and Paul McCartney reunite for her majesty’s service.

Kronomyth 4.5: Bond. James Paul McCartney Bond.

Another of Paul McCartney‘s patchwork epics (as opposed to a medley), joining the storied ranks of “Uncle Albert/Admiral Halsey,” “Band On The Run” and “Rock Show.” This was, of course, the theme to the James Bond film of the same name (it’s still the best Bond theme ever). Produced by George Martin, the song featured an orchestra (presumably arranged by Mr. Martin) and was far more ambitious than anything on Red Rose Speedway.

The B side is a nonalbum track that eventually made its way onto the expanded CD reissue of Speedway. Sung by Denny Laine, it’s a throwaway no better or worse than the melodies included on Speedway’s album-ending medley (“Lazy Dynamite,” “Hold Me Tight”). Guns ‘N Roses had a hit in 1991 with their cover of “Live And Let Die,” which was probably the beginning of the end for them.

Original 7-inch single

A1. Live And Let Die (Paul McCartney) (3:10)
B1. I Lie Around (Paul McCartney) (5:00)

The Players

Denny Laine (backing vocals, bass guitar), Linda McCartney (backing vocals, keyboards), Paul McCartney (lead vocals, piano), Henry McCullough (lead guitar), Denny Seiwell (drums) with Ray Cooper (percussion), George Martin (orchestral arrangement). Produced by George Martin (A1), Paul McCartney (B1).

The Plastic

Released on 7-inch single on June 1, 1973 in the UK and Sweden (Apple, R5987), on June 18, 1973 in the US and Canada (Apple, 1863) and in 1973 in France (EMI Pathe, 2C 006 05361), Italy (Apple, 3C 006 05361) and Japan (Apple, EAR-10401) with picture sleeve; reached #9 on the UK charts and #2 on the US charts (charted on July 7, 1973) (RIAA-certified gold record).

  1. Re-issued on 7-inch single in 1976 in the UK (Capitol, R5987) and the US (Capitol, 1863).

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