It was written by Paul McCartney in Hawaii in December 1975, under the original title ‘Love School’. McCartney found inspiration from a list of pornographic film titles in an American publication.
The song came about when we’d finished our tour of Australia and were coming back via Hawaii for a sort of holiday after the tour. We were supposed to go to Japan, but the Japanese Minister of Justice decided we couldn’t get in, because we’d been naughty. So we went to Hawaii instead, on the way back to England. Anyway, I was looking through one of these American newspapers and the back page, at the end of the entertainments section, is always the porno films.
I rather liked the titles, so basically I took all the titles and made a song out of them. For example, there was a film called School Mistress, another called Curly Haired, one called Kid Sister and another called The Woman Trainer and I liked those titles so much I just wove them into a song. It’s kind of like a pornographic St Trinians.
7 November 2022
I like the way Paul does that downturn with his voice from “Girls” to “school”. It took me a while but I figured out how to sing it that way.
Is it true this song was the A side of a 45 but that the B side (Mull Of Kintyre ) eclipsed it in sales?
Was it on London Town or only issued as a 45?
How is the title properly spelled? “Girls” without any apostrophe is probably wrong. Girl’s doesn’t seem right, since it’s a school for many girls. So it must be Girls’. Interestingly, it looks like some 45s had both:
Now today I find, you have changed your mind
17 December 2012
Recorded during the London Town sessions, @Sea Belt, but not included on the album, in the majority of official listings or appearances it is Girls School without an apostrophe, and was released as a double-A side with Mull Of Kintyre , mainly — by Paul’s own admission — because he felt B-sides were often ignored and wanted to give it a shot at some radio play.
It was only in the US that Girls School was promoted as the lead track, and the single failed to crack the Top 30 there; in those countries that promoted Mull, it reached #1 in several (becoming the UK’s top-selling single until Do They Know It’s Christmas in 1984) and the Top 10 in many more.
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The Beatles Bible 2020 non-Canon Poll Part One: 1958-1963 and Part Two: 1964-August 1966
7 November 2022
Sea Belt said
How is the title properly spelled? “Girls” without any apostrophe is probably wrong. Girl’s doesn’t seem right, since it’s a school for many girls. So it must be Girls’.
I went with ‘Girls School’ because that’s what the promotional material called it. That said, the book The Lyrics 1956 to the Present calls it ‘Girls’ School’, which is probably more grammatically correct.
The following people thank Joe for this post:Sea Belt, Rube, Richard