McCartney Times

Interviewing your heroes can have its pitfalls, but Paul McCartney avoids them all – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

Interviewing your heroes can have its pitfalls, but Paul McCartney avoids them all – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

Interviewing your heroes can have its pitfalls, but Paul McCartney avoids them all – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)
December 07
11:01 2017

One of the questions I’m most often asked is, “If you could interview anybody in the world, who would you pick?”It’s a difficult question.When somebody asks it, they imagine that it must be a thrill to meet somebody of whom you are a huge fan.It is, of course, but it also comes with fear.What if the person is horrible? What if it’s a bad experience?What if every time you then hear one of their songs, or read one of their books or watch one of their films, it’s then a little bit soured by the fact you met them and they were mean or ill-mannered or egotistical?This happened to me when I interviewed the American author Jonathan Franzen in 2010 about his book, Freedom.I found him difficult from the first question.Now every time I consider re-reading The Corrections, one of my favourite books, all I think about is how snippy Jonathan Franzen was.

If the question is really, “Of whom are you the most massive fan?”, the answer is former Beatle, Paul McCartney.

But do I want to interview him? His work means so much to me, do I really want to risk discovering that he’s a Franzen?

This week, I was forced to answer that question. My producer Callum rang me with a mind-blowing offer: McCartney will do his only television interview in Australia with you if you want to do it.

When the offer came, it turned out it really wasn’t a dilemma at all. It was a risk that simply had to be taken.

As if any journalist could say no to the offer of an interview with one of the most influential musicians of the past century.

I desperately hoped he would be a lovely person but I also said to myself, “He’s achieved so much musically, if he turns out to be awful, and that’s the price of being the genius that is Paul McCartney, that’s okay, I’m not going to let it affect how I feel about his music.”

On the day of the interview, I arrived in Perth — the first stop on his Australian tour — five hours before we were scheduled to head to the stadium.

“You’ve got plenty of time to have some lunch and then lie down and have a rest,” I told myself.

I ate two bites of a sandwich before I couldn’t stomach another mouthful and then I spent the two hours before my make-up artist arrived pacing around my hotel room in nervous anticipation, periodically grinning like a lunatic and hugging myself with glee.

I’m going to meet Paul McCartney! I’m going to watch his rehearsal from backstage!

Source: Interviewing your heroes can have its pitfalls, but Paul McCartney avoids them all – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

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Martin Nethercutt

Martin Nethercutt

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