Sir Paul McCartney is set to release a new solo album that was recorded spontaneously in nine weeks during the Covid-19 lockdown.
Titled McCartney III, it follows 1970’s McCartney I and 1980’s McCartney II, both of which were also recorded alone.
“I was just messing around, never suspecting for one second that this was going to be an album,” the star told BBC 6 Music’s Matt Everitt.
He added that some of the songs had “echoes of the pandemic”.
One such track features the lyric: “When the cold days come, we’ll wish that we had seized the day.”
“That was me reminding myself, and anyone listening, that you’ve got to grab the good stuff and get on through the pandemic,” he said.
Sir Paul’s optimism was inspired by his parents’ experiences during the blitz of Liverpool during World War Two.
“They survived,” said the 78-year-old. “They survived the bombing and losing people left, right and centre, and yet they came out of it with an incredible spirit.
“So it’s good to think, ‘Well, if they could do it, I can do it.'”
Sir Paul had not planned to release an album in 2020. But then he found himself tinkering with When Winter Comes, an unreleased track from the early 1990s that was co-produced by Sir George Martin.
That inspired a new song, Long Tailed Winter Bird, while a rewritten version of When Winter Comes became the new album’s finale.
McCartney III, which is due for release on 11 December, follows in the home-made tradition of Sir Paul’s earlier self-titled albums, on which the musician played almost all the instruments himself.
Sir Paul’s interview will be broadcast on Shaun Keaveny’s BBC 6 Music show on Thursday afternoon. Here are some of the highlights.