‘Midwife’ is the fourth track on Paul McCartney’s third full-length classical music album Working Classical.

It was recorded by the Loma Mar Quartet at Abbey Road Studios during sessions running from 21-25 February 1999. The quartet also recorded the new composition ‘Midwife’, plus several reworked songs from McCartney’s back catalogue: ‘Junk’, ‘Warm And Beautiful’, ‘My Love’, ‘Maybe I’m Amazed’, ‘Calico Skies’, ‘Golden Earth Girl’, ‘Somedays’, ‘She’s My Baby’, and ‘The Lovely Linda’.

The string quartet pieces came about as the result of memorial services held in America and England for Linda. McCartney wanted to mark the occasion with some of his own music and decided to collect together some of the songs he had written specifically with Linda in mind, the one exception being ‘Junk’. (This simple waltz with a descending bass line dates back to the Beatles era; it’s a song that suits the quartet medium especially well). The Brodsky Quartet premiered the resulting arrangements in London, the Loma Mar Quartet (who made the present recording) in New York. It was during the studio sessions that McCartney surprised the members of the Loma Mar Quartet with two new and completely original compositions – ‘Haymakers’ and ‘Midwife’ – as a kind of “thank you”. The latter is particularly effective, with it’s laid back, almost bluesy violin melody set against a steady 4/4 pizzicato accompaniment.
Julian Haylock
Working Classical liner notes

Published: |