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Music

How Paul McCartney provided Nile Rodgers with one of the most surreal moments of his life

Nile Rodgers and Paul McCartney are two of modern music’s definitive icons. Without the contributions of both, popular culture would be a completely different landscape from the technicolour palette it is today, and for this reason, both are to be treasured.

Rodgers is one of the most revered guitarists in history, and together with the late Bernard Edwards, he created Chic, one of the funkiest bands of all time. They spearheaded the disco craze of the ’70s, providing us with countless moments of brilliance, and always delivering on the promise of a real good time.

As for Paul McCartney, his resumé speaks for itself. A member of The Beatles, the most important band in history, alongside songwriting partner John Lennon, he laid down many of the foundations of contemporary popular music and is best described as a pioneer. 

After The Beatles, McCartney enjoyed an uber-successful solo career and launched the band Wings, who provided us with some of the greatest moments in ’70s rock such as ‘Band on the Run’, ‘Jet’ and ‘Arrow Through Me’. His life and career have been genuinely astounding, and the fact that he has always led by example has elevated his importance even further.

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Given that both are two of the most important musicians to have ever graced the earth, it is only natural they crossed paths many times over the years, and are now good friends. According to an anecdote by Rodgers provided to Stereogum, McCartney gave him one of the most surreal moments of his life.

Rodgers said: “I’ve crossed paths with him many times, but I have to say the most touching one is a silly one. We played President Obama’s final party. I looked out on the dancefloor. It was my very first time meeting Paul McCartney, and he was singing every one of my songs. I was thinking, ‘How weird is this.’ The very first song I ever learned how to play on guitar was ‘A Day In The Life,’ and now I’m looking out at the dancefloor and Paul’s got a dance circle with his wife and he’s singing my songs.” 

He added: “Now that we’ve become friends and I know the family… you don’t grow up thinking of Paul McCartney loving to dance. You think of pictures of artists — even ones that are happy seem troubled, because they are pondering issues that most people don’t think about.” 

The ‘Everybody Dance’ mastermind concluded: “Most people are busy living their lives and having to make instant decisions. An artist will create time, no matter what, to ponder very, very big and very, very microscopic issues. It’s just the life, man. I know I’m not Paul McCartney, but I’ll tell you something, there’s not a minute that goes by where I’m not thinking, ‘Maybe I should do this, what about that.’ In the recording studio, the most important words are ‘What if?'”

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