Written by: McCartney
Recorded: August-November 1973
Producer: Paul McCartney
Released: 30 November 1973 (UK), 3 December 1973 (US)
The song which closed the first side of Wings’ 1973 album Band On The Run, ‘Let Me Roll It’ was interpreted by many as an echo of the stripped-down production of the John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band album and Lennon’s single ‘Cold Turkey’.
I still don’t think it sounds like him [John Lennon], but that’s your opinion. I can dig it if it sounds that way to you.
Paul McCartney In His Own Words, Paul Gambaccini
The titular phrase was, like the central refrain of the song ‘Band On The Run’, inspired by a quotation by George Harrison. “Let me roll it to you” was a line in I’d Have You Anytime, the opening track on his 1970 album All Things Must Pass.
‘Let Me Roll It’ was written by McCartney at High Park Farm in Scotland. Although the song’s similarities to Lennon’s debut solo album were said to be coincidental, the use of echo, heavy bass and stinging lead guitar made such comparisons inevitable.
‘Let Me Roll It’ was not really a Lennon pastiche, although my use of tape echo did sound more like John than me. But tape echo was not John’s exclusive territory! And you have to remember that, despite the myth, there was a lot of commonality between us in the way that we thought and the way that we worked.
A song like ‘Let Me Roll It’ came about by playing around with a little riff; if I’m lucky the rest of the song just comes to me.
‘Let Me Roll It’ was the b-side of the ‘Jet’ single in early 1974. The release was a huge success on both sides of the Atlantic.
The song was regularly performed live by Wings in their 1975-76 concerts, and was included on the 1976 album Wings Over America.
‘Let Me Roll It’ returned to McCartney’s setlist from his 1993 world tour onwards. It has frequently appeared in concert recordings, and on the albums Paul Is Live, Back In The US, Back In The World, and Good Evening New York City.