Mike Shinoda Says They Thought Paul McCartney Would Reject Linkin Park

Linkin Park’s Mike Shinoda recently joined Next Level for an interview during which he revealed Linkin Park had concerns about getting rejected by the Beatles icon Paul McCartney.

On December 13, 2004, Linkin Park released their ‘Numb/Encore’ as a single for their EP entitled ‘Collision Course.’ For the song, the band collaborated with the rapper Jay-Z, and it ended up being a mash-up of rock and hip-hop with the combination of the lyrics of ‘Numb’ and Jay-Z’s ‘Encore.’

At the 2006 Grammy Awards, ‘Numb/Encore’ won the Best-Rap/Sung Collaboration award. Linkin Park and Jay-Z then shared the same stage at the show and performed the song live. Paul McCartney made a surprise appearance during the performance and joined them on the stage to play verses from ‘Yesterday.’

In a recent interview with Next Level, Mike Shinoda recalled making ‘Numb/Encore.’ He stated that they began making a couple of songs on a bus and ended up on the stage at the Grammys. He then said sharing the same stage with Paul McCartney and Jay-Z was surreal and admitted they didn’t believe McCartney would agree on performing with them.

Moreover, Shinoda said approaching Paul McCartney to perform with them was pretty intimidating as the Beatles have great importance in the music scene. He stated that they invented many things for the music industry’s benefit, and Linkin Park felt an imposter syndrome for being on the same stage as McCartney.

During the conversation, Mike Shinoda said about performing with Jay-Z and Paul McCartney:

“I grew up listening to Jay-Z, and the weirdest part of the whole Jay-Z thing was actually how it ended. It started with making a couple of tracks on the bus, and by the end of it, we were on stage at the Grammys performing with Jay-Z and Paul McCartney of the Beatles. It was all so surreal. We almost didn’t think that Paul would say yes, but he was the first one to say yes. He came right back, and he was like, ‘Yeah, sounds great!’ And then, we had to convince Jay-Z.”

After being asked whether approaching Paul McCartney for the show was intimidating, Shinoda said:

“Dude, it was so intimidating. The Beatles, it wasn’t just that they were the biggest band of all time. It’s that they’re also from a technology and innovation standpoint; they actually invented modern recording and things that we all still do when we record a song. They invented a lot of those things. So it was beyond intimidating. It was like you just feel an imposter syndrome even just being there.”

You can watch the interview and Linkin Park, Jay-Z, and Paul McCartney’s performance below.