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The Rest Of 1997

On August 29th, Paul, on acoustic guitar, recorded a version of “Kansas City” intended for a Leiber & Stoller tribute album which was never released). As such, this version remains officially unreleased.

On September 29th, at McCartney’s The Mill studio, McCartney, Starr, Hudson, Emerick and Paul Wright worked on the track “La De Da“, which McCartney contributed bass and backing vocals on. This session was filmed, and excerpts were later featured in the music video for the song. Also recorded was a new bass track for “What in the… World“— replacing the placeholder bass track from a July session. Upon hearing a playback of the track, McCartney remarked “Whoo … Rich! Sounds kinda Beatle-ish!” to which Starr replied “I know! That’s what I said to Mark months ago“. McCartney, now looking at Starr, told him “You are a fucking Beatle!”

The same day Paul’s STANDING STONE was released. Based on an extended poem written by Paul himself – it was Paul’s second full-length release of original classical music and was given its world premiere performance at The Royal Albert Hall in October 1997. As Paul explained, “I don’t divide my tastes into liking rock music or classical music. I just like good music.”

He later explained part of the work: “Above all, I wanted Standing Stone to end with a celebratory passage. Besides the original sketches that I made for the work, I also had a tune that I wrote years ago but I never found a use for. My children had grown up with it, my father in-law liked it, and I always felt it was part of the family. I want everyone to leave happy after a performance of Standing Stone since I write for people.”

That song, “Celebration,” was released as a single in EMI Classics.

To accompany the release of Disney’s movie, “Hercules,” the animated short of Paul’s “Tropic Island Hum” was added as a trailer before the main feature. It was released as a single (#21 in the U.K.) in 2004, and was recorded in 1995.

The film tells the story of Wirral the Squirrel, who was almost killed by soldiers. Froggo helped him and took him to another place he would go. He couldn’t go back there again! But then, he finds a tropical island.

Bison is the chief of that island, and Wirral’s new love crush is Wilhelmina. Then, all 3 of them (except Wilhelmina) get cleaned up and that night, they perform the theme song to the island. Bison sings the first part of the song. A parrot gets banged on the bass drum and is dizzy. Later, an alligator sings. Right after that, Wirral blushes at his new love crush Wilhelmina. Then a bad thing appears, the mask-animals try to ruin the party, but then, a school appears, and at the end Wirral & Wilhelmina kiss.

The music video of Linda’s “Wide Prairie” was also released around the same time. It was recorded in 1974, and would come out on the album of the same name in 1999.

On September 15th, Paul joined an all-star lineup for the Music for Montserrat concert, in which some of the greatest forces in rock and roll gathered to play their legends out, only to find themselves effortlessly topped by one flex of a pick on ‘The End’ chords.

On November 20th, Paul appeared on The Oprah Television show, performing (with videos of himself) all of the singles from FLAMING PIE.

On December 12th recorded “A Room With A View” for an album, “Twentieth Century Blues: The Songs Of Noel Coward.” In a hint of what would he would attempt on KISSES ON THE BOTTOM, but unlike that 2012 album Paul is in incredible voice of this track.

Finally, The “Standing Stone” concert, held on October 14th at the Royal Albert Hall, was broadcast on Christmas Day and the documentary “The Making of Standing Stone” was broadcast the day after, on “Boxing Day”, at 12:10pm on the BBC.

Next, 1998….a year that forever changes Paul.T

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