Thursday, December 15, 2011

James McCartney London

I was asked to do a shoot with James McCartney, son of yes, one of the greatest musicians ever! James needed some new live photos and some studio type location shots. I arrived late afternoon in Camden to meet up with James and his manager Adrian. James was sound checking when I got there. I was introduced as soon as he had finished. What a lovely guy he is. We went up to the dressing room and had a chat for a while. I set up some studio lights and we did some set up shots. James was very easy to work with. We were also discussing his musical influences amongst other things. After we had taken quiet a few photos I said we had enough at that point. James said he wanted to Meditate for a while. He asked if I wanted to stay whilst he did. Whilst I appreciated the offer, I thought it would be better if me and my mate Paul Carey went next door and had a bite to eat. When we got back we did a shoot with James and his whole band. Then it was show time..

The Barfly venue is very intimate, however it was rammed... It was also being filmed as well. So, on came James and his brilliant band.. The crowd loved him, many people obviously knew his music already as many people were singing along word for word. He is a brilliant songwriter, singer and guitarist! After about the 2nd song I turned around to have little look into the crowd and yes, Sir Paul was there with Stella and Mary. They were shouting and dancing along and supporting James throughout. It was a wonderful gig and at one point, James introduced a song from his EP called 'Wings of a Lightest Weight' and said "I wrote this about my Dad & my Mum".. When he was singing the song, I was watching him looking straight at his dad, Paul and there eyes were meeting and it was really a moment between father and son. Everyone could see it was quite an emotional moment.. The gig was fantastic, music, band, everything, brilliant.. There were serious security milling about in the crowd during the whole set. Then as the show ended, James and his band went straight off stage and upstairs to the dressing room. The band were followed by Paul, Stella & Mary. I was escorted by his management and security straight upstairs as well. So, James, Paul, Stella, Mary, Paul Carey and I were in the dressing room. It was so nice to see, James and his dad being so lovely together.. Mind you, I didn't expect anything else, but as a father myself, it was really nice to see the love between them and Stella and Mary as well. They are a lovely family and true Rock n Roll Royalty.

We took some nice photos of James and Paul together and then we did a family shot with Stella & Mary. I was very happy with the photos as they all looked so happy together. After taking the photos, Paul and I had a brief chat about the past. Although we both agreed it was hard to remember lots of it. We were chatting about the late 70's when I was often at his and Linda's house in London. One of my best friends and great photographer, the late Matthew Taylor had a brother called Barny. He was going out with Linda's daughter from her first marriage, her name was Heather. So, due to the fact that Barny & Heather were an item, Mathew and I would be round there at the McCartney residence frequently. I have very happy memories of those days and evenings. Paul also used to come into The Who's management office in Wardour St, London. This is where I had an office myself. So, we used to see each other in there. Then of course was the time I spent with him and Wings, which must have been around 1976.. Blimey, where does the time go!! Anyway, Paul asked for my details and said he wants to get in touch and we can go through my photos from those days.

Paul was saing that he was in Moscow the night before and what an amazing gig it was there.. I bet it was. He joked about a particular song that they like in Russia that he wrote, Back in the USSR.. I asked him how it went. He lent back and gave me a slightly old fashioned look! I thought for a second I was going to get hims to sing it to me.Now that would have been special!

All in all it was a lovely evening with his talented son James and lovely daughters. James McCartney EP I believe is out and its called The Complete EP Collection Double CD- Close at Hand and the other CD is called Available Light. Well worth getting!

I think the family photos of them all and the shots of James and his dad will appear in most newspapers around the world in the next 24 hours..