Paul McCartney sat down for an interview today with Jarvis Cocker at the Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts, a university which McCartney co-founded in 1996. In the Q&A, McCartney began by discussing his weak arts education as a young person in Liverpool (“I’m now heavily into S&M. I grew to like it!” he joked, discussing being “caned” at school) and how he became interested in rock’n’roll and playing music in general.
In response to an audience questions about “recent” music he had really been affected by, McCartney specified Kendrick Lamar and Kanye West’s My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy. As he has in recent interviews, the former Beatle also shouted out Christine and the Queens, whose “catchy…Michael Jackson ripoff” he really enjoys.
He also discussed the inspiration behind his upcoming studio LP Egypt Station (out September 7), saying he had aimed to create a conceptual double album because he couldn’t compete with the stacked, hits-forward albums of modern pop stars: “I can’t compete with that Taylor Swift kind of thing…she’s got better legs than me!” Classic Paul humor, that.
When asked about one song he wished he’d written, McCartney picked…Sting’s “Fields of Gold.” Maybe puzzling, maybe very on-the-nose, and certainly somewhat distressing. Watch the whole discussion below.