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The Beatles’ Paul McCartney really liked some of Elvis Presley‘s songs. During an interview, he said hearing one of them as an adult made him cry. He was able to recite the lyrics of the song decades after its release.

Elvis Presley playing songs on a guitar
Elvis Presley | Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

The Beatles’ Paul McCartney liked Elvis Presley songs from a certain period

According to, Paul discussed Elvis in a 1994 interview. He said he liked the songs Elvis recorded early in his career at Sun Studios. “I heard them this summer — haven’t heard them for years — and I was blown away,” he recalled. “I suddenly realized the last time I listened to this thoroughly was before The Beatles, before all that happened to me, and it just stripped it all away. 

“It was like I was a kid playing snooker again and listening,” Paul added. “It actually got me crying, pow. Really did it to me. And I could remember all the words, [sings] ‘Hold me close, hold me tight …'” These are lyrics from Elvis’ early song “I Want You, I Need You, I Love You,” which the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll recorded at RCA Victor, not Sun Records.

How Paul McCartney felt about the nostalgia Elvis Presley’s songs brought him

Paul revealed how his children reacted to him playing Elvis songs. “And my kids were like, ‘Dad, you know all the words to this stuff?'” he said. “‘You better believe it.'”

Paul said he still enjoyed nostalgia for his pre-Beatles life even though he cherished The Beatles’ legacy. “And I thought, ‘Well, I once was a kid like this, before all The Beatles thing, and now you live with the whole legacy of The Beatles, and it’s great.'” he said. “You could do a lot worse. But you know what I mean? Just the idea of that was fantastic — I was 17 again.”

The Beatles' Paul McCartney holding a guitar
The Beatles’ Paul McCartney | PA Images via Getty Images

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The way the world reacted to ‘I Want You, I Need You, I Love You’

Paul probably wasn’t the only one who enjoyed “I Want You, I Need You, I Love You.” According to The Billboard Book of Number 1 Hits, the song topped the Billboard Top 100, the predecessor to the Billboard Hot 100. The song stayed on the top of the chart for a week. Elvis initially released the song as a standalone single; however, it later appeared on the compilation album Elvis: 2nd to None. Elvis: 2nd to None peaked at No. 3 on the Billboard 200, staying on the chart for 16 weeks.

“I Want You, I Need You, I Love You” was popular in the United Kingdom as well. According to The Official Charts Company, the track reached No. 14 in the U.K., staying on the chart for 11 weeks. Elvis: 2nd to None also became a success there, peaking at No. 4 in the U.K. and lasting on the chart for 12 weeks. “I Want You, I Need You, I Love You” made Paul cry — and it seemed to make a lot of listeners want to buy it at the record store.