Paul Is Live is a live album by Paul McCartney, released in 1993 during his New World Tour in support of the album Off the Ground. Its cover is based on the cover for the 1969 Beatles album Abbey Road and contains multiple references to the "Paul is dead" conspiracy theory.


 [hide*1 Title and cover

Title and cover[edit]Edit

The album's title is a response to the "Paul is dead" rumours after the 1969 release of The Beatles' last studio album, Abbey Road, and the cover of Paul Is Live is a digitally altered version of the 1969 album's sleeve. Intentional differences between the two covers are:[1][2]

  • The infamous "LMW-281F" on the Volkswagen Beetle's license plate was mis-read as "LMW-28IF", purportedly meaning that Linda McCartney Weeps and that McCartney would have been 28 if he had lived – is edited to read "51IS", indicating that he is alive and his age at the time was 51.
  • McCartney is wearing shoes; on Abbey Road he had appeared with bare feet, while the other Beatles had shoes. This mismatch was viewed as an eyecatch to the hoax.
  • His left foot is forward. In the original cover, McCartney's right foot was forward, out of step with the other Beatles.
  • He holds the dog's leash in his left hand; since he is left-handed, many thought that another clue of the "dead Paul" from Abbey Road was the cigarette he held in his right hand.
  • The police car - said to symbolise the policemen who had been bribed by the other three Beatles to keep quiet about Paul's death - has been removed.

The dog appearing on the cover is Arrow, one of the offspring of Martha, the sheepdog that was the inspiration for the title of the song "Martha My Dear". The cover photo is from the Abbey Road cover photoshoot by photographer Iain Macmillan. There are differences between this and the photograph used for theAbbey Road cover; most notably, the taxi present in the Abbey Road cover photograph does not feature here. The retouching was done by CGI artist Erwin Keustermans, who erased the Beatles and put in McCartney and the dog, taken from 35 mm pictures by Linda McCartney.

Release and reception[edit]Edit

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic [3]
Entertainment Weekly


B+ ()[4]
Entertainment Weekly(video) [5]

Excerpted from his shows in Australia, as well as from various cities in the United States, Paul Is Live followed the 1989–1990 Paul McCartney World Tour/Tripping the Live Fantastic extravaganza by only three years, confounding critics and fans as to its appearance, and some its necessity (although the only song it has in common with Tripping The Live Fantastic is "Live And Let Die"). As a result, Paul Is Live became McCartney's lowest-selling live set of his career, peaking at number 34 in the UK and a lowly number 78 in the US.

A concert film subtitled 'The New World Tour' was subsequently released on VHS, and later on DVD. It was directed by Aubrey Powell. The video release includes the controversial pre-concert film, which features vintage footage of the Beatles, solo-era promotional film clips, then switches tone by including graphic animal test footage (all of which is underscored by solo and Beatle recordings), and, finally, warmup footage of the band. The program starts with the warm-up footage, and is played in full at the conclusion of the concert. The packaging included a disclaimer warning regarding the graphic nature of the animal footage.

Afterwards, McCartney took a sizeable break from his solo career to begin the enormous Beatles Anthology project in early 1994 with George HarrisonRingo Starr and George Martin. This took up much of his time for the next two years, before Flaming Pie in 1997.

Track listing[edit]Edit

All songs composed by Paul McCartney, except where noted

  1. "Drive My Car" (John Lennon, McCartney) – 2:34
  2. "Let Me Roll It" (McCartney, Linda McCartney) – 4:10
  3. "Looking for Changes" – 2:43
  4. "Peace in the Neighbourhood" – 4:50
  5. "All My Loving" (Lennon–McCartney) – 2:16
  6. "Robbie's Bit (Thanks Chet)" (Robbie McIntosh) – 2:00
  7. "Good Rockin' Tonight" (Roy Brown) – 2:48
  8. "We Can Work It Out" (Lennon–McCartney) – 2:42
  9. "Hope of Deliverance" – 3:29
  10. "Michelle" (Lennon–McCartney) – 2:56
  11. "Biker Like an Icon" – 3:40
  12. "Here, There and Everywhere" (Lennon–McCartney) – 2:29
  13. "My Love" (P. McCartney, L. McCartney) – 4:06
  14. "Magical Mystery Tour" (Lennon–McCartney) – 3:15
  15. "C'Mon People" – 5:38
  16. "Lady Madonna" (Lennon–McCartney) – 2:33
  17. "Paperback Writer" (Lennon–McCartney) – 2:39
  18. "Penny Lane" (Lennon–McCartney) – 2:58
  19. "Live and Let Die" (P. McCartney, L. McCartney) – 3:51
  20. "Kansas City" (Jerry LeiberMike Stoller, Richard Penniman) – 3:54
  21. "Welcome to Soundcheck" – 0:41
  22. "Hotel in Benidorm" – 2:00
  23. "I Wanna Be Your Man" (Lennon–McCartney) – 2:36
  24. "A Fine Day" – 6:18
Video release
  1. "Drive My Car" (Lennon–McCartney)
  2. "Let Me Roll It" (P. McCartney, L. McCartney)
  3. "Looking for Changes"
  4. "Peace in the Neighbourhood"
  5. "All My Loving" (Lennon–McCartney)
  6. "Good Rocking Tonight" (Brown)
  7. "We Can Work It Out" (Lennon–McCartney)
  8. "Hope of Deliverance"
  9. "Michelle" (Lennon–McCartney)
  10. "Biker Like an Icon"
  11. "Here, There and Everywhere" (Lennon–McCartney)
  12. "Magical Mystery Tour" (Lennon–McCartney)
  13. "C'Mon People"
  14. "Lady Madonna" (Lennon–McCartney)
  15. "Paperback Writer" (Lennon–McCartney)
  16. "Penny Lane" (Lennon–McCartney)
  17. "Live and Let Die" (P. McCartney, L. McCartney)
  18. "Kansas City" (Leiber, Stoller, Penniman)
  19. "Let It Be" (Lennon–McCartney)
  20. "Yesterday" (Lennon–McCartney)
  21. "Hey Jude" (Lennon–McCartney)

Band line-up[edit]Edit


Peak positions[edit]Edit

Album release
Chart Position
Austrian Albums Chart[6] 38
Dutch Mega Albums Chart[7] 60
German Media Control Albums Chart[8] 44
Japanese Oricon Albums Chart[9] 16
Spanish Albums Chart[10] 13
Swedish Albums Chart[11] 23
UK Albums Chart[12] 34
US Billboard 200[13] 78


Album release
Region Certification Sales/shipments
Spain (PROMUSICAE)[14] Gold 50,000^

^shipments figures based on certification alone

Video release
Region Certification Sales/shipments
United States (RIAA)[15] Gold 50,000^

^shipments figures based on certification alone

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