Former Beatle Paul McCartney (81) praised Beyoncé’s (42) cover version of the Beatles hit “Blackbird” highly. According to Variety magazine, he told her in a personal conversation “that she did a killer version of the song.” McCartney composed the song for the Beatles’ legendary “White Album” in 1968. Beyoncé’s version can recently be heard on her new album “Cowboy Carter”.

“Blackbird” is a quiet, but all the more impressive song. It fits perfectly into Beyoncé’s new album in country and folk style and is therefore also heard on the second track of the long player. The background of the catchy piece, however, is more serious than its graceful external form. The then 26-year-old Paul McCartney was so moved by the political events of 1968 that he wrote the song in honor of the civil rights movement in the USA and released it a few weeks after the assassination of civil rights icon Martin Luther King (1929-1968). “Blackbird” is not only the English translation of “blackbird”, but also a slang term for “black girl”. The blackbird with broken wings and a longing for freedom is symbolic of the women of the revolutionary decade of the 1960s who were striving for personal freedom.

McCartney is so happy with Beyoncé’s version because her cover “reinforces the message of civil rights that inspired me to write the song in the first place.” He recommends “anyone who hasn’t heard the song to give it a listen. You’ll love it!” He recently conveyed his excitement about her version to Beyoncé personally: “I spoke to her on FaceTime and she thanked me for writing the song and allowing her to record it,” he continues. “I told her she did a killer version of the song. When I saw the footage on TV in the early ’60s of black girls being expelled from school, I found it shocking. And I can’t believe it “That there are still places where this kind of thing happens today. Anything my song and Beyoncé’s fabulous version can do to ease racial tensions would be a great thing and makes me very proud.”

Beyoncé, Beatles, Bach – that’s the complete musical family tree of “Blackbird”. On the “White Album” McCartney plays and sings the song alone. He used a music-historical finger game as a template for his hit: the so-called “Lute Suite” in E minor, Bach Works Directory 966, by Johann Sebastian Bach (1658-1750). McCartney and his Beatles colleague George Harrison (1943-2001) used to regularly appear at parties with this. With their historic guitar playing, the two probably not only kept their fingers warm, but also warmed the hearts of many a listener. McCartney certainly wouldn’t have suspected back then that his Bach cover would hit the charts again in 2024.