When Paul McCartney announced his 2021 book, The Lyrics: 1956 to the Present, he noted that the time had never been right to write an autobiography. In 2022, with the music legend seemingly as busy as he’s ever been, the first part of an exhaustive portrait of his post-Beatles career is coming. The McCartney Legacy Volume 1: 1969-73, from noted Beatles historian Allan Kozinn and researcher Adrian Sinclair, has been delayed slightly. It’s now scheduled for Dec. 13, 2022, via Dey Street Books. It was originally planned for Nov. 8, but as Sinclair noted on June 8, “our publisher explained that the sheer size and complexity of the book has meant that production will take longer than expected.” He added, “It will be worth the wait.” (It’s listed as 720 pages, up from 592 when it was initially announced.) It’s available for pre-order below.
From the publisher’s announcement: Set against the backdrop of the Beatles splintering over both business and creative issues, The McCartney Legacy Volume 1 covers a period in which McCartney recreated himself, both as a man and as a musician. This is an in-depth and revealing exploration of his creative life beyond the Beatles—featuring hundreds of interviews with fellow musicians, tour managers, recording engineers, producers, filmmakers, and more.
The story of the Beatles has been told many times, covering all periods and perspectives. McCartney’s work in the 50 years since the Fab Four’s breakup has been extraordinarily successful and enduringly popular—his 26 post-Beatles albums have sold upwards of 86.5 million copies; and McCartney’s 2019 Freshen Up tour was the highest grossing tour ever, in the entire world. Beside his extraordinary, creative solo output, he has collaborated with the most influential artists of his generation and the next: from Elvis Costello to Stevie Wonder, from Michael Jackson to Dave Grohl, even with Johnny Cash and Kanye West.
McCartney, too, has explored new poetry styles with Allen Ginsberg and teamed up with Peter Martins and the NYC Ballet to create Ocean’s Kingdom. The list goes on from there. And he has done all this while maintaining a mostly normal family life. His creative output since the Beatles has never had the full exploration such a life and body of work demands.
McCartney Legacy gives McCartney’s post-Beatles life and work the kind of in-depth treatment that Mark Lewisohn has given the Beatles, and Philip Norman has given John Lennon. It is the first truly comprehensive biography, and the most finely detailed exploration of McCartney’s creative life beyond the Beatles, ever undertaken.
Author Allan Kozinn was a music critic and culture reporter for The New York Times from 1977 to 2014, where he was, in effect, the Times‘ Beatles desk. In that capacity, he interviewed McCartney several times, and saw him perform in a great variety of configurations and venues – from singing with a hand mic at the Lonestar Roadhouse, playing rock oldies at the Cavern, in Liverpool, and performing in small halls like the Ed Sullivan Theater and the Highline Ballroom, to full-scale concerts at Madison Square Garden and Yankee Stadium. He currently contributes regularly to the Wall Street Journalthe Washington Post and other publications. He has taught courses at the Juilliard School and New York University (including a course on the Beatles at the latter), and has written seven books, among them The Beatles – From The Cavern to the Rooftop (1995) Got That Something! How The Beatles’ ‘I Want To Hold Your Hand’ Changed Everything (2013).
The principal researcher for the series, Adrian Sinclair studied film at the University of Wales, Aberystwyth, and served a traineeship with ITV in Yorkshire, England, where he learned his craft as a documentary film editor. Since going freelance 15 years ago, he’s worked for such major broadcasters as the BBC, ITV, Sky, Channel 4, National Geographic, Discovery and MTV. His 2010 documentary Stealing Shakespeare (BBC/Smithsonian) was Emmy nominated for Best Documentary.