Page last updated at 11:03 GMT, Thursday, 26 November 2009

Paul McCartney says he 'revisits' Beatles through songs

By Tim Masters
Entertainment correspondent, BBC News

Sir Paul McCartney
Sir Paul is about to embark on a European tour

Sir Paul McCartney has said his concerts are a way of helping him "revisit" other Beatles members and his late wife Linda.

Launching his new live CD and DVD in London, the singer admitted he could get "emotional" on stage.

"If I'm doing songs by The Beatles, I obviously remember the sessions when we recorded," Sir Paul said.

"There's a song I do called Here Today which is specifically written for John, and that sometimes catches me out."

At an intimate press conference, Sir Paul described how other songs would bring back memories of George Harrison, John Lennon and Linda McCartney.

"If I'm doing something like Something - the song - obviously I'm thinking of George and I'm thinking of him playing the ukulele...

"It's great actually. I really like it. In a way you're revisiting them."

He added: "Similarly with John and Linda - in a way you're kind of in contact them again and it's sad, it's emotional."

Beatles spirit

Paul McCartney
I still think I'm in the Beatles. It's something you don't want to lose.
Sir Paul McCartney

Sir Paul said that on his concert DVD, Good Evening New York City, he can be seen getting emotional in the song for Lennon.

"It catches me out in this film version where I realise I'm telling this man that I love him, and it's like, 'Oh my God!'. It's like I'm publicly declaring this in front of all these people I know well. What am I doing?

"I couldn't have done it when I was 18 because I would not have allowed myself to cry or go anywhere near that as an 18-year-old guy - now it's okay. I'm used to it."

Asked if he felt the spirit of the Beatles while he was performing, Sir Paul said: "Yeah. I still think I'm in the Beatles. It's something you don't want to lose.

"For a while there with Wings I didn't do Beatles songs on purpose because I wanted to create a new thing...

"But once we'd done Wings, and once I'd got beyond that phase, I started to think it'd be nice - and I know the audience would like to hear the Beatles' songs, so I started to enjoy doing that."

Sir Paul will embark on his first European tour for five years in December.

The tour opens on 2 December in Hamburg, where the Beatles honed their sound with live performances in clubs between 1960 and 1962.

It concludes at London's O2 Arena on 22 December.

The live album Good Evening New York City was recorded during Sir Paul's concerts at Citi Field stadium in July. The ground was built to replace Shea Stadium, where The Beatles played to a record-breaking audience in 1965, and is located on adjacent land.

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