Paul McCartney Said Fans Called 1 Wings Song a ‘John Lennon Pastiche’

TL;DR:

  • Paul McCartney said fans compared a Wings song to John Lennon’s work.
  • Paul revealed what he thought of the comparisons.
  • The song in question has a major connection to “Jet” by Wings.
Paul McCartney and John Lennon by a car
Paul McCartney and John Lennon | Cummings Archives/Redferns

Paul McCartney said fans called one Wings song a “John Lennon pastiche.” Subsequently, he discussed the comparison and whether the tune could have been a Beatles song. Notably, a musician said the track in question is Paul’s best work.

Paul McCartney discussed The Beatles’ relationship with Wings

During a 2001 interview with Billboard, Paul discussed the relationship between The Beatles and Wings. “For me, it was like, ‘What do you do — how do you follow The Beatles?’ We’d always thought it was impossible. And we were always in the shadow of The Beatles. That was the big difficulty with Wings.

“So it was a question of, ‘Do you just try and get a bunch of great musicians around you-which is probably the most logical thing to do — and just pick up where you left off?'” he said. Paul said he wanted to start fresh.

Paul McCartney said 1 Wings song could have been a Beatles song with John Lennon vocals

While Wings’ songs were supposed to sound different from The Beatles, one song got compared to John’s music. “‘Let Me Roll It’ was a riff, originally, a great riff to play, and whenever we played it live, it goes down great,” he said. “We’d play it on two guitars, and people saw it later as a kind of John pastiche, as Lennon-ish, Lennon-esque.

“Which I don’t mind,” he added. “That could have been a Beatles song. Me and John would have sung that good.”

While “Let Me Roll It” received comparisons to John’s work, it also received acclaim. In a 2022 Stereogum article, Ian Devaney of the band Nation Of Language said it was his favorite song by Paul. He said listening to the song made it feel like the world was moving in slow motion around him. He felt the tune’s sparse lyricism only made it better.

How the song performed on the charts

“Let Me Roll It” was a single that never charted on the Billboard Hot 100. It also served as the B-side to Wings’ “Jet.” The latter song reached No. 7 on the Billboard Hot 100, staying on the chart for 14 weeks. The tune appeared on the album Band on the Run. That album topped the Billboard 200 for four of its 120 weeks on the Billboard 200. Band on the Run became the longest-charting album of the group’s career.

“Let Me Roll It” was not a charting single in the United Kingdom. The Official Charts Company reports “Jet” reached No. 7 in the U.K. as well and stayed on the chart for nine weeks. On the other hand, Band on the Run hit No. 1 for seven of its 124 weeks on the chart. Band on the Run became the group’s biggest album in the U.K. by far.

“Let Me Roll It” is a classic B-side even if it’s reminiscent of John’s catalog.