Monday, February 27, 2012

Coming Up

Paul's First "Music Video"

Coming Up Wings

"Coming Up" is Paul McCartney's first music video. It went to No. 1 in the summer of 1980. This was before MTV, but we can still consider this Paul's first true music video. Sure, The Beatles invented the modern music video, but they were called "promotional films" back then and they were done for different purposes. This video clearly was done to entertain a mass audience.

McCartney played all the instruments on McCartney II, from which "Coming Up" is taken, and did the same on the video for "Coming Up." You can see him trying, sometimes awkwardly, to mimic famous artists of the past such as Buddy Holly (and some much less famous ones, too). Who, precisely, he is "doing" in each case is the subject of some debate to this day.

Coming Up Wings

I didn't particularly like this video when it came out (actually, I didn't see it until MTV started up a year later, or maybe I saw it once before then on one of those Friday Night video shows). But, it has grown on me over the years. The sheer artistry and control that Paul exercises here is stunning. He has this video diagrammed out like a mathematical code, everything perfectly timed and in rhythm. Even the "performers" who are out of step do so in a precise way. Linda also has a very nice appearance here, she really was an asset, no matter what some people choose to believe.

The version that got the most airplay was a live performance in Glasgow.


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