The release

‘My Love’ was released as a single by Apple Records in the UK on 23 March 1973, and 9 April in the USA.

The b-side was ‘The Mess’, recorded live in the Hague on 21 August 1972 during Wings’ European tour.

‘My Love’ was Wings’ fourth single, following ‘Give Ireland Back To The Irish’, ‘Mary Had A Little Lamb’, and ‘Hi, Hi, Hi’.

Despite their earlier faltering start, ‘My Love’ was the blockbuster hit Wings needed. It topped the US Billboard Hot 100 for four weeks, and reached number nine on the UK Singles Chart. It was also a top ten hit in Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and Norway.

‘My Love’ crossed over into the black audience, which I liked because I’ve always admired black music so much.
Paul McCartney
Wingspan: Paul McCartney’s Band On The Run

The album Red Rose Speedway followed on 30 April, with ‘My Love’ as the second track. Red Rose Speedway was the first of five consecutive albums by Wings to top the Billboard LPs chart.

In June 1973, ‘My Love’ was replaced at the top of the Billboard chart by George Harrison’s ‘Give Me Love (Give Me Peace On Earth)’. It was the first time since 25 April 1964 that members of The Beatles had been at the top two positions on the chart, and the only such occurrence during their solo years.

The single was awarded a gold record by the RIAA on Friday 6 July 1973, for sales of more than one million copies in the US.

Television performances

On 1 April 1973, Wings finished filming the television special James Paul McCartney at the Elstree Studios, England. They performed a medley of ‘Little Woman Love’ and ‘C Moon’, plus versions of ‘My Love’ and ‘Live And Let Die’.

Three days later the band recorded their third appearance on the BBC’s Top Of The Pops, miming to My Love at Television Centre, London. Also appearing on the show was Hurricane Smith – Norman Smith, who had engineered The Beatles’ early albums and singles.

Henry McCullough was drunk during the Top Of The Pops appearance and, having become nauseated by the smoke effects in the studio, threw up on the stage immediately after the song’s finish.

Live performances

‘My Love’ was one of the songs performed by Wings on their first tour of eleven universities in England and Wales. It was played from the first date at the University of Nottingham on 9 February 1972.

Wings continued to perform the song throughout their subsequent tours, although Henry McCullough grew frustrated at Paul McCartney’s insistence that he play the guitar solo the same way each night. McCullough’s desire for greater artistic freedom eventually led to him leaving the band.

A live version featuring McCullough’s replacement, Jimmy McCulloch, on lead guitar, was released on the live album Wings Over America. Recorded on 21 May 1976 at Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale, New York, it was the only song on the album from Red Rose Speedway.

‘My Love’ was always a very popular song in the live act. I’d see couples putting their arms around each other, which I always thought was a nice romantic moment.
Paul McCartney
Wingspan: Paul McCartney’s Band On The Run

McCartney revived ‘My Love’ during the New World Tour in 1993. A recording can be heard on the album Paul Is Live.

It was performed again on his Driving World Tour in 2002, with recordings available on Back In The US and Back In The World. During the tour it was performed in memory of Linda McCartney, with images of her projected onto screens.

McCartney continued to perform ‘My Love’ on all his subsequent tours. A performance from July 2009 can be heard on Good Evening New York City.