Paul McCartney, scribe of legendary love songs, doesn’t think writing about love is cheesy

Paul McCartney knows a thing or two about writing love songs. But the former Beatle has faced criticism from some who feel he’s perhaps written too many love songs, with some that skew “soppy.”

“I think a lot of people who are cynical about it haven’t been lucky enough to feel it,” McCartney said on Tuesday’s episode of his iHeartPodcast “McCartney: A Life in Lyrics.”

McCartney said he often wonders about “the critic who damns” his legacy of love songs, but also mentioned that “they come and go,” while the power of his music tends to outlive said naysayers anyway.

Throughout the podcast episode, McCartney focused on how universal the feeling of love is as part of his impetus for writing so many songs about it. This of course includes his own experience of finding love, particularly with his late wife Linda McCartney.

In his Wings era, he even wrote “Silly Love Songs,” an intentionally cheeky love song about… yes, writing love songs. The 1976 hit was his answer to those noisy critics at the time.

Paul McCartney at the 2024 MusiCares Person of the Year event in Los Angeles. - Monica Schipper/Getty Images
Paul McCartney at the 2024 MusiCares Person of the Year event in Los Angeles. - Monica Schipper/Getty Images

“I was being accused of just writing silly love songs and was in danger of starting to buy into this idea that you should just be a bit tougher and a bit more worldly. But then I suddenly realized that’s exactly what love is. It’s worldly,” he said on the podcast.

It’s also a topic that is “actually very deep and meaningful and the basis of most religions and most philosophy,” McCartney continued. It’s this thing, he added, “that people can feel for each other that makes life better if they can engage in it.”

Unfazed by his critics, McCartney said on the episode that instead of outlawing writing love songs, he would just “get on with it, (and) get into it,” and never “be embarrassed because even though you can say this is a soppy subject, it actually is the opposite.”

It’s hard to imagine a world in which McCartney really did buy into the message his critics were pushing. If he did, we would never have gotten “Maybe I’m Amazed” or “Got to Get You Into My Life” or “Eight Days a Week,” and so many more.

And if he wants to use his platform to spread love in a world that can sometimes feel full of hate and sorrow, what’s wrong with that? I’d like to know…

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