The Paul McCartney Album George Harrison Called ‘Disappointing’
As we all know, the Beatles had a pretty tough breakup in 1970, which came as a shock to their millions of fans. It was a simple case since various events were cited as the reasons for their unexpected disbandment. For some, they needed a break from constant touring. Some blame John Lennon’s second wife, Yoko Ono, while some others show Paul McCartney’s controlling nature as the reason.
After the breakup, all the band members went their separate ways, and unfortunately, they never reunited. Each Beatle continued with their successful solo careers and released their debut solo albums one after another. Paul McCartney had already proven himself as a prominent songwriter with the Beatles, and he continued in the same way in his solo works. McCartney debuted as a solo artist with his 1970 album, ‘McCartney,’ and formed a new band named Wings, which would become highly popular in the 1970s.
The album was actually far from what many expected as the standards were pretty high after the Beatles’ tremendous success. However, some of the songs featured in the record have been counted among the most beloved McCartney tracks. Now let’s recall what his former bandmate George Harrison thought about McCartney’s debut solo album.
George Harrison Called The McCartney Album ‘Disappointing’
George Harrison gave an interview to Howard Smith at WABC-FM radio in New York City back on May 1, 1970. The conversation was right after the Beatles’ breakup when Paul McCartney had just released his debut solo album. At the time, George Harrison was also busy with the making process of his solo record, ‘All Things Must Pass.’ During a conversation, he was initially asked about his new material and the Beatles. Then, the interviewer reminded him of McCartney’s newly released album and asked for his opinions on that.
Harrison started his words by saying that he found ‘That Would Be Something’ and ‘Maybe I’m Amazed’ wonderful, but he didn’t think the same for the rest of the album. He called the remaining parts of the album ‘disappointing’ since maybe he expected a much better job from him. Harrison really enjoyed those two tracks, but the rest of the album didn’t appeal to him.
Then, he also explained why he didn’t like the other tracks on the album. There could have been a much better arrangement of some of the songs, and he disliked the drum and guitar’s sound quality. It is known that McCartney mostly recorded the album in his home studio, and he played all of the instruments himself. Hence, Harrison implied that he could’ve done better under different conditions.
Here is how George Harrison reflected on Paul McCartney’s debut solo album:
“‘That Would Be Something’ and ‘Maybe I’m Amazed’ I think are great. And everything else I think is fair, you know — is quite good — but umm, a little disappointing. But I don’t know. Maybe I shouldn’t be disappointed, maybe… It’s best not to expect anything and then everything’s a bonus, you know. I think those two tracks, in particular, are really very good. And the others, I mean, just don’t do much for me.
Because I can hear other people play better drums and guitars and things. And the arrangements of some of these songs like… ‘Teddy Boy,’ and ‘Junk,’ and stuff — with a little bit more arrangement they could’ve sounded better. I suppose it was the only thing he felt he could do at the time, you know, and he started off just testing his machine. Eddie Cochran did something like that, though, didn’t he? ‘Summertime Blues’ and ‘Come On Everybody’ he played bass, guitar, drums.”
In general, George Harrison still didn’t describe it as a worthless album, but he thought it could’ve been arranged much better. However, it was also interesting how he pointed out it would be better if he didn’t have any great expectations so that he wouldn’t be disappointed. However, he still gave credit to some of the songs, which would be featured among his solo hits later on.