Mull of Kintyre – Wings

THIS DAY IN MUSIC……………………………………on November 14th of 1977 Wings release “Mull of Kintyre”, a tune about Paul McCartney’s Scottish home at the southwestern most tip of the Kintyre Peninsula in southwest Scotland. The bag pipe laced tune will become McCartney’s all time best selling single in the UK, either with or without The Beatles. Despite being the first song to sell over two million copies in Great Britain, it was mostly ignored in North America. Later in Macca’s career, the number became a concert highlight when he started using local pipe bands on stage to help him perform the song. Paul McCartney wrote this with Denny Laine, his bandmate in Wings. The song is a tribute an island in Scotland where Paul and his wife Linda had a farm. The Mull of Kintyre island is known for its beautiful scenery and tranquil atmosphere. After a difficult breakup with The Beatles, McCartney went there to avoid a nervous breakdown. This was barely noticed in the US, but in Britain it was the best-selling single of the ’70s, selling in excess of 2 million copies, which was more than any Beatles record. The US single was actually a bigger hit for its B-side, “Girls’ School”, than for this song. It peaked at #33 early in 1978. The UK sales figures are astonishing: when the Official Charts company compiled a list in 2012 of the top-selling singles of all time, “Mull Of Kintyre/Girls’ School” was #4, just below “Bohemian Rhapsody.” In an amazing coincidence, the biggest hit singles of the 1970s in the UK and US – this song and Debby Boone’s “You Light Up My Life,” respectively – had virtually simultaneous chart runs. Even their reigns at #1 in their respective countries overlapped for 2 weeks in December 1977. In the UK, this is the biggest hit featuring bagpipes, which give the song a Scottish feel. They were played by the Campbeltown Pipe Band of Campbeltown, Scotland. 

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