Monday, February 27, 2012

Ebony & Ivory


Paul McCartney Stevie Wonder Ebony and Ivory paulmccartney.filminspector.com
Stevie Wonder and Paul McCartney performing "Ebony and Ivory."



"Ebony and Ivory" is one of Paul McCartney's more controversial songs. A duet by Paul and Stevie Wonder, it touched a lot of raw nerves. It is a bold pop song in that it involves issues of racial equality, always a touchy subject in the United States.

Paul McCartney Stevie Wonder Ebony and Ivory paulmccartney.filminspector.com
The Columbia single "Ebony and Ivory."

Personally, I never really could get my heart around this song, but it was a smash No. 1 hit in both the States and the UK. Released on 26 March 1982, it is on Paul's No. 1 "Tug of War" album. "Tug of War" was Paul's last solo US No. 1 (obviously, excluding the Beatles Anthology albums of the 1990s, and "Flowers in the Dirt" was Paul's last in the UK).

Paul McCartney Stevie Wonder Ebony and Ivory paulmccartney.filminspector.com
Stevie Wonder and Paul McCartney in the music video for "Ebony and Ivory."

"Ebony and Ivory" was No. 1 in the United States for seven weeks, a massive chart run. Only "Hey Jude" spent longer (ten weeks) at the top of the charts in Paul's legendary career. A lot of people do love the song, including, apparently, former President Obama, who had a command performance by Paul and Stevie at the White House. Apparently, Paul was inspired to write the song by a Spike Milligan quote that he happened to see:
black notes, white notes, and you need to play the two to make harmony, folks!
However, that general quote goes back long before Milligan.


Paul McCartney Stevie Wonder Ebony and Ivory paulmccartney.filminspector.com


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