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Super Furry Animals release Paul McCartney’s ‘maccapella’ vegetable percussion

By | Published on Thursday 22 July 2021

Paul McCartney

It’s always interesting when a singer’s isolated vocals are released, isn’t it? The opportunity to hear exactly how they sang a song, their vocal ticks having been previously lost in the mix. If that person is a real superstar, it’s even more exciting.

So, you’ll be THRILLED to hear that Paul McCartney’s isolated vocals from Super Furry Animals’ 2001 single – ‘Respectable For The Respectable’ – have now been made available.

For those not familiar with the song, McCartney’s contribution was actually percussion. Vocal percussion. To be precise, he chewed some celery and carrots in time with the music. And now you can hear that without rest of the track!

The collaboration came about after SFA keyboard player Cian Ciarán approached McCartney at the 2000 NME Awards, where SFA won Best Live Act and The Beatles won the almost sarcastic sounding Best Band Ever award.

Initially Ciarán drunkenly proposed that McCartney let his band remix The Beatles – a request that amazingly proved successful, as the band ended up working on two tracks on McCartney’s ‘Liverpool Sound Collage’ album, reworking old Beatles recordings.

As, I don’t know, some sort of reward, I guess, the band offered McCartney the opportunity to work on some of their music. Specifically, they asked if he wanted to reprise his vegetable percussion career, which began when he was credited as playing celery on 1967 Beach Boys track ‘Vegetables’.

Anyway, that’s the back story. This is already like an episode of ‘Classic Albums’, isn’t it?

Now, here’s Ciarán to explain how the final mouth percussion track came about: “He was going to come to the studio and then decided not to for some reason. So, we sent him stereo backing tracks so he could keep time, then he sent the tape back with a message that started with a really dodgy Welsh accent. Then he goes ‘I hope you like it’ – the next thing you know you just hear this chewing sound!”

Before we get on and listen to this thing, I should tell you that the album on which the original track appears – ‘Rings Around The World’ – will be getting a 20th anniversary reissue with all sorts of added curios on 3 Sep.

Now, here’s Paul McCartney with a mouthful of celery and carrots: