Home Read Albums Of The Week: Paul McCartney & Wings | One Hand Clapping

Albums Of The Week: Paul McCartney & Wings | One Hand Clapping

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “The wait is over: One Hand Clapping, one of the most bootlegged live albums in musical history, has finally received a proper release.

In August 1974, when Band On The Run was enjoying a seven-week stint at the top of the U.K. album charts, Paul McCartney and Wings headed to Abbey Road Studios to film a video documentary and possible live studio album. Despite overwhelming demand for new material from the biggest band in the world at that time, One Hand Clapping was never officially released.

Filmed and recorded over four days and directed by David Litchfield, One Hand Clapping documents a historic moment for Paul McCartney fans. Over the years, various parts of One Hand Clapping have been bootlegged with varying degrees of success. Some of the material has also appeared on official releases. However, the official release, which features the original artwork designed for the project, including a TV sales brochure for the unreleased film at the time, is the first time the audio for the film — plus several additional songs recorded off-camera — have been officially issued.

One Hand Clapping showcased Wings’ new lineup, fresh off their return from Nashville after recording the classic single Junior’s Farm. Following the sudden departure of Denny Seiwell and Henry McCullough the previous year on the eve of Band On The Run, Paul, Linda McCartney and Denny Laine were joined by guitarist Jimmy McCulloch and drummer Geoff Britton. Joining the band in the studio were orchestral arranger Del Newman and saxophonist Howie Casey, who had previously played with Paul in Hamburg and would go on to join the Wings touring band.

Opening with an instrumental jam that would become the One Hand Clapping theme song, the album features live-in-studio renditions of Wings megahits Live And Let Die, Band On The Run, Jet, My Love, Hi, Hi, Hi, Junior’s Farm, Paul’s much-loved solo song Maybe I’m Amazed, reworked extracts of Beatles classics Let It Be, The Long And Winding Road and Lady Madonna, the Moody Blues hit Go Now with Laine singing, and Paul’s solo-piano version of the Tin Pan Alley classic Baby Face.

One Hand Clapping also features previously unreleased solo performances recorded on the final day of sessions in the backyard of Abbey Road Studios. These include the unreleased track Blackpool, The Beatles’ iconic Blackbird, Wings B-side Country Dreamer, and cover versions of Eddie Cochran’s Twenty Flight Rock (the first song Paul played to John Lennon when they met in 1957) and Buddy Holly’s Peggy Sue and I’m Gonna Love You Too.

One Hand Clapping serves as a celebration of the enduring legacy of McCartney and Wings. It captured a moment when the band had found and defined their signature sound — just as Paul had shaped popular culture the decade before with The Beatles, he was doing it once again in the ’70s with Wings. This recording gives an insight into the inner workings of the band as they work and play together in the studio. It also underscores Paul’s incredible talent as a live performer: Fifty years on, Paul is still performing many of these songs in packed stadiums across the world.”