Anyone with any sense knows that Paul McCartney was instrumental to The Beatles’ success. I’m not going to attempt to argue that he was the best Beatle (even though he obviously was), but I am going to reiterate that he was the engine in The Beatles machine. As such, his impact on the musical landscape has been immense. There’s hardly a person on the planet who doesn’t know at least one of Macca’s songs, and even moody teenagers listening exclusively to mumblecore could be convinced to hum ‘Hey Jude’ at a push.
Apologies if I’m coming across as a little hyperbolic, but I think it’s fair to say that McCartney’s compositions are as important to popular music as Mozart’s piano sonatas are to classical. Tracks like ‘Blackbird’, ‘Let It Be’, ‘Eleanor Rigby’ and countless others are embedded in the collective consciousness in a way that is both miraculous and strangely moving.
In light of Paul McCartney’s 80th birthday. Stereogum asked 80 artists to pick their favourite track by the great songwriter. One of those artists was Fleetwood Mac guitarist Lindsey Buckingham. “One of my favourite McCartney songs is ‘Here, There and Everywhere.’ Along with Paul’s other ballads on the Revolver album, it significantly broadened the landscape of the Beatles’ music.”
Buckingham went on to add: “The melody and chord changes are transcendent, and the production values, while largely defined by Paul, remain rooted in the collective, evolving sensibility of the Beatles. Revolver was perhaps the group’s high watermark in terms of composition, and ‘Here, There And Everywhere’ is a paragon among many masterpieces on that album.”
‘Here There and Everywhere’ is also Paul McCartney’s favourite song from his own list of Beatles contributions. Written beside the swimming pool in John Lennon’s Weybridge home, the song arrived while Paul was waiting for John to wake up from one of his long afternoon naps. “I sat out by the pool on one of the sun chairs with my guitar and started strumming in E, and soon had a few chords, and I think by the time he’d woken up, I had pretty much written the song, so we took it indoors and finished it up.”
Often described as Paul’s finest love song, ‘Here There and Everywhere’ was written with his then-girlfriend Jane Asher in mind. However, in the studio, Paul found inspiration in none other than Marianne Faithful. “When I sang it in the studio I remember thinking, I’ll sing it like Marianne Faithfull; something no one would ever know,” Paul once confessed. “So that was a little voice, I used an almost falsetto voice and double-tracked it. My Marianne Faithfull impression.”
You can revisit ‘Here There and Everywhere’ below.