Paul McCartney has shared his unreleased home-recorded demo for Wings’ John Lennon-inspired Wild Life closer “Dear Friend.” The unearthed, piano-and-vocals-only rendition, as well as its newly remastered studio version, feature on the upcoming reissue of the 1971 LP, due out December 7th.
“With ‘Dear Friend’, that’s sort of me talking to John after we’d had all the sort of disputes about The Beatles break up,” McCartney said of the track. “I find it very emotional when I listen to it now. I have to sort of choke it back. I remember when I heard the song recently, listening to the roughs [remastering works-in-progress] in the car. And I thought, ‘Oh God’. That lyric: ‘Really truly, young and newly wed’. Listening to that was like, ‘Oh my God, it’s true!’ I’m trying to say to John, ‘Look, you know, it’s all cool. Have a glass of wine. Let’s be cool.’”
McCartney added, “Luckily we did get it back together, which was like a great source of joy because it would have been terrible if he’d been killed as things were at that point and I’d never got to straighten it out with him. This was me reaching out. So, I think it’s very powerful in some very simple way. But it was certainly heartfelt.”
On December 7th, McCartney’s archival series continues with massive reissues for both 1971’s Wild Life and 1973’s Red Rose Speedway. On the 3CD/1DVD limited deluxe edition of Wild Life, the newly remastered original album is paired with two discs worth of rough mixes, home recordings, b-sides, single edits and other unreleased material. The DVD for the set boasts rare footage of acoustic home videos, rehearsals and more.
Red Rose Speedway‘s 3CD/2DVD/1Blu-ray set features the remastered 1973 LP with a reconstructed version of its originally conceived (but ultimately nixed) “double album,” as well as b-sides, alternate mixes and previously unreleased tracks from the era. The reissue’s DVDs include the James Paul McCartney TV Special, interviews and music videos, and the never-before-seen film The Bruce McMouse Show.