Paul McCartney announces new album McCartney III

Paul McCartney has announced McCartney III, a completely solo album recorded in England during the 2020 Covid-19 lockdown.

McCartney III follows 1970’s McCartney and 1980’s McCartney II, which were similarly recorded mostly at home without other collaborators.

McCartney III cover artwork

McCartney III is to be released on 11 December 2020. Here’s the press release:

50 years following the release of his self-titled first solo album McCartney, featuring Paul playing every instrument and writing and recording every song, Paul McCartney will release McCartney III on December 11th.

Paul hadn’t planned to release an album in 2020, but in the isolation of “Rockdown,” he soon found himself fleshing out some existing musical sketches and creating even more new ones. Before long an eclectic collection of spontaneous songs would become McCartney III: a stripped back, self-produced and, quite literally, solo work marking the opening of a new decade, in the tradition of 1970’s McCartney and 1980’s McCartney II.

Recorded earlier this year in Sussex, McCartney III is mostly built from live takes of Paul on vocals and guitar or piano, overdubbing his bass playing, drumming, etc. atop that foundation. McCartney III spans a vast and intimate range of modes and moods, from soul searching to wistful, from playful to raucous and all points between — captured with some of the same gear from Paul’s Rude Studio used as far back as 1971 Wings sessions. And Paul’s array of vintage instruments he played on the new album have an even more storied history, including Bill Black of Elvis Presley’s original trio’s double bass alongside Paul’s own iconic Hofner violin bass, and a mellotron from Abbey Road Studios used on Beatles recordings, to name but a few.

Just as McCartney’s 1970 release marked Paul’s return to basics in the wake of the biggest band break-up in musical history, and the 1980 avant-garde masterpiece McCartney II rose from the ashes of Wings, McCartney III finds Paul back on his own, turning unexpected circumstances into a personal snapshot of a timeless artist at a unique point in history.

333 Edition

Jack White’s Third Man Records also announced a ‘333 Edition’ of McCartney III, retailing at $60 and pressed on yellow and black vinyl. Limited to just 333 copies, it sold out within minutes.

McCartney III — 333 Edition is limited to 333 copies and is pressed on ‘yellow-with-black-dots’ vinyl created using 33 recycled vinyl copies of McCartney and McCartney II by Third Man Pressing. This special “regrind” pressing, the first version of McCartney’s third self-titled solo album available for purchase, is hand-numbered and features an exclusive screen-printed jacket.
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