Paul McCartney Is Trying So Hard to Be Cool I Can’t Take It Anymore
Somehow, the man who co-wrote the White Album is making me cringe.
On Friday, Paul McCartney announced the release of “Egypt Station,” his first album of original material since 2013’s “New,” with a decidedly Millennial-esque tweet that is either totally adorable or utterly cringeworthy, depending on your perspective.
— Paul McCartney (@PaulMcCartney) September 7, 2018
“When it’s Friday and #EgyptStation is finally released! #FridayFeeling,” he wrote, accompanied by a gif of him looking victorious in a recording studio along with the words “Friday Feeling.” (For the record, it’s not necessary to caption a meme if you’re already using it as a hashtag—and making a gif of yourself kind of goes against the unspoken rules of gif-making.)
— Paul McCartney (@PaulMcCartney) September 6, 2018
In another attempt to get in with the young people, McCartney appeared in a skit in which he, Jimmy Fallon, and, yes, Kendall Jenner, dance to one of his new singles, called “Fuh You.”
The clip aired on Fallon ahead of his appearance on The Tonight Show on Thursday, and, frankly, the guy comes across less like a living legend and titan of rock-n-roll and more like a cross between your dad who pretends to like Justin Bieber—and who is, like, totally OK with you smoking pot—and one of the “Wild and Crazy Guys” from Saturday Night Live.
— Fallon Tonight (@FallonTonight) September 7, 2018
Am I the only one who doesn’t need to be reminded by Paul McCartney that he’s Paul friggin’ McCartney? As in the man, the legend, the irreplaceable music icon?
For what it’s worth, the reviews for “Egypt Station” seem to indicate that I’m not alone in my discomfort at his attempts to stay hip. The Guardian music critic Alexis Petridis wrote that the album is the “latest in a series of ungainly lunges for contemporaneity on McCartney’s part.” However, he adds that the 16-track album is “at its best when it finds new ways for McCartney to be as McCartneyesque as possible.” Which makes sense, because McCartney is at his coolest when he’s acting like the McCartney that we know and love, the one who will always be cool no matter how old he gets, because a classic never ages. But there’s nothing less cool than trying to be cool. (For Sir Paul’s greatest TV performance ever, in which he effortlessly plays it cool, see here.)
What is genuinely cool, and extremely admirable, is the fact that McCartney, who is 72, not only continues to produce new albums but also tours, since he certainly doesn’t need the money or the adulation. (He’ll be doing a concert in New York tonight at a secret location, which you can watch via livestream, followed by a full-fledged tour in 2019.)
I actually saw McCartney in concert once, during his tour for “Driving Rain” in 2002. During the show he vowed that he would never retire, and that they’ll be bringing him on stage in a wheelchair one day. It hit me hard, because here was a man who clearly wrote music purely for the sake of making music, who performed purely for love of the stage. That’s also really cool.
I look forward to seeing the music legend on stage for many years to come. I just hope he leaves the Kardashians at home.
And if you’re also a Beatles diehard, check out 20 Photos Only Kids Who Grew up in the 1960s Will Understand.
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