An up-tempo boogie song recorded during the experimental sessions for Paul McCartney’s second solo album, ‘Bogey Music’ was inspired by Raymond Briggs’ children’s book Fungus The Bogeyman.
McCartney had been asked to write music for the soundtrack to a film version of the book. Although it never happened, he did improvise a set of lyrics based on a page of the book, which he sang over a backing track.
There’s a book called Fungus The Bogeyman, for kids and grown-ups too, which was sent to me by some fellow who’s making it into a film and who wanted me to do some music in it. The story is a bit strange, and the basic idea is that the bogeymen are people who make bumps in the night. They live beneath the ground and come out at night and frighten people and they like everything that is opposite to what we like. If we like warm dry clothes, they like wet slimy ones. And they’ve got all sorts of crazy books in their library, like Lady Chatterley’s Bogey.
It’s just a great book, but it’s crazy and it just tickled my fancy when I got it. Anyway, I had that book in the studio one day and opened it to a page where the young people in Bogeyland rebel against the old people who hate music. They all start to get dressed in warm clean clothes and then they start to actually take baths, which is unheard of, and get into rock ‘n’ roll. So I just took that page, looked at it a bit, and just thought, ‘Well, it looks like a bit of rock ‘n’ roll.’ So I made up the track and called it ‘Bogey Music’. It’s a crazy fantasy, really, but that’s what I was thinking of when I did it.
Commonly held to be one of the least successful cuts on the McCartney II album, ‘Bogey Music’ was born of McCartney’s belief in having fun during the spontaneous sessions.