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2002-Sep-23: The Drivin USA Tour Is on the Road Again

Today's Minneapolis Star Tribune published their reporter, Jon Bream's interview with Sir Paul. Mr. Bream met Sir Paul at Milwaukee's Bradley Center. He was present for the Saturday afternoon sound check where he reported that, even though he was only performing "Midnight Special" for about 30 security guards and stage crew, Sir Paul was :animated, enthusiastic and clearly into it. It was obvious that he was having much fun making music with or without an audience." Checking the sound of his instruments to the tune of "Let 'Em In", Sir Paul observed: "This piano sounds a bit loud to me", but then decided it would be fine once the sold-out audience appeared because, he explained, "All these people steal piano noise.  It's a well-known thing in Milwaukee."

Having completed the sound check, Sir Paul turned his attention to his interview with Jon Bream. In a small, cramped VIP backstage room Sir Paul told the reporter:

"Just 'cause it's opening night, you get a little nerves but not badly. I'm very happy with the band. So it's more excitement than nerves. It's exciting, man.  Back on the road! I just enjoyed playing with the band so much. So I said, 'We'll take a few months off -- more than most people get -- go get married and then get back.' We got back. Back in the U.S."
Sir Paul then joked about why he cut "Mother Nature's Son," "C Moon" and "Vanilla Sky" from his play list and and replaced them with "Michelle" , "She's Leaving Home", and and "Let 'Em In":
"There were a couple lesser hits that I'd put in on purpose, actually, to give people a chance to go get a beer and take a pee. So now there's no chance."
When Asked if he would ever consider touring as the bassist for Ringo Starr & His All-Starr Band, Sir Paul replied:
"Yeah, I'd consider anything. It's a matter of what I fancy. We got into music to try to get out of the routine of having a regular job. In actual fact, it can get like a regular job; it can get worse than a regular job sometimes. At least, we fooled ourselves into thinking we were free, that we'd escaped all the irons of bondage of normal life. I still feel like that. If I fancy touring, I will. (Success has turned him into)a businessman, the very thing I was trying to avoid. But it's great. I love it.  I'm very happy with how I do things. It's very made up, it's a bit of an ad lib. I'm not a great analyst or theorist.

"I really should be very jaded and very blase and fed up with the whole thing by now. But I'm not. I'm really excited to go on tonight. It's really surprising because life is supposed to knock it out of you. It doesn't seem to have gone that way with me. I don't know why. I am Gemini, and they're supposed to be here, there and everywhere. I have lot of interests. Sometimes I think it would be more seemly to just have one -- but that's not me."

Sir Paul then addressed a variety of topics. Back in the '60s did he ever think that he and the Rolling Stones and the Who would be touring the United States in the autumn of 2002?
"Not me!"
What does he think about the 2003 reissue of the Beatles' "Let It Be" minus the Phil Spector orchestration?
"That was how I originally wanted to hear it."
And what about another forthcoming release of the Beatles' "Carnival of Light", a tune a friend asked him to write for a "hippie happening"?
"It's the only avant-garde recording the Beatles ever did. It's 15, 16 minutes. I did a lot of music like that privately. Some people would call it a lot of plinking and plunking and banging and shouting."
 Are there other Beatles' treasures in the vaults?
"There's lots. We used to joke after 'Anthology' that the next album would be called 'Scraping the Bottom of the Barrel.' There's all sorts of things but I'm not sure whether they'd make records."
 What was it like to perform Wings tunes for the first time without Linda?
"That's sad, and that's difficult." (His keyboardist, Wix Wickens, keeps a lava lamp on-stage in memory of Linda.)"It's five years since she passed away. Time is a healer. I just remember the good stuff. It's the same as with John. I do a song I wrote for John. Some nights it's impossible to get through; some nights it's just lovely and emotional. It's life at my age."

(kindly submitted by PLUGGED correspondent Joan M. Hopkins)


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