‘Junior’s Farm’ was a standalone single released by Paul McCartney & Wings in 1974.
It was such a relief to get out of those business meetings with people in suits, who were so serious all the time, and go off to Scotland and be able just to sit around in a T-shirt and corduroys. I was very much in that mindset when I wrote this song. The basic message is, let’s get out of here. You might say it’s my post-Beatles getting-out-of-town song.
Wings had contracted to a trio for the recording of Band On The Run, after guitarist Henry McCullough and drummer Denny Seiwell quit before the sessions began in Nigeria. After the album was a hit, McCartney began recruiting their replacements.
He drafted in Scottish guitarist Jimmy McCulloch and English drummer Geoff Britton, and flew the band to Nashville to begin recording. While there the McCartneys stayed at the farm of Tennessee session musician Claude ‘Curly’ Putman Jr.
Wings went to Nashville to bond as a band. We’d lost a guitarist and drummer before we recorded Band On The Run, and now we had two new members. So the idea was to rehearse and record a couple of songs, this being one of them. We stayed at the home of a songwriter called Curly Putman, who wrote ‘The Green, Green Grass of Home’. I think he and his wife had gone on holiday, so we had the place to ourselves.
Wings rehearsed in Putman’s garage prior to recording at Sound Shop Studios in Nashville in July 1974. The change in scenery helped inspire ‘Junior’s Farm’.
They just seemed to enjoy being out in the country. They rode horses. I have a pond and they went swimming in it… Paul was very likable, personable. He just seemed like one of us.
American Songwriter, Jan/Feb 2011
This was actually the last track we recorded. Paul essentially showed everyone what he thought they should be playing but everyone seemed to take it a notch higher. Jimmy McCulloch really got to shine on this song. He, Linda and Denny all overdubbed harmony vocals. Denny was also playing some really nice electric rhythm guitar. The breath on the end is Paul’s of course.
Paul McCartney Recording Sessions (1969-2013), Luca Perasi
Wings played ‘Junior’s Farm’ during their Australian tour in 1975, but dropped it afterwards.
The lyrics of ‘Junior’s Farm’ were included in McCartney’s 2001 book Blackbird Singing: Poems and Lyrics 1965-1999, and again in 2021’s The Lyrics: 1956 To The Present.
‘Junior’s Farm’ remains a good live song, and we usually put it in at the start of the set. It’s got a lot of elements that work well – a recognisable introduction and a good steady rock and roll beat, and then these interesting, slightly surreal lyrics and a rousing chorus of ‘Let’s go, let’s go’. That gets people in the mood to set out, ‘just in the nick of time’, for their own version of ‘Junior’s Farm’, whatever that might be – wherever they want to disappear and hide out and just lie low.
Some people think, blimey, they’re just trying to get two records out of one. But I think that if it’s a song that people would like to know and sing, and it gets played only by the people who buy the record, then I like to see if we can give it an extra plug.
The single reached number three on the US Billboard Hot 100, and four on the Cash Box Top 100. In the UK it peaked at number 16.
‘Junior’s Farm’ was also a top 10 hit in Canada, New Zealand, Norway, and South Africa.
The song was included on the 1978 compilation Wings Greatest, the US version of 1987’s All The Best!, and a three-minute edit appeared on the 2001 compilation Wingspan: Hits And History.
‘Junior’s Farm’ and ‘Sally G’ were both included on the 2014 reissue of Wings’ Venus And Mars.