News ·

Jack White's Favorite Beatle: Paul?

In news that will confuse, infuriate, and validate rockists and purists across the world, Jack White has revealed that Paul McCartney is his favorite Beatle, more than visionary John, talent George, or hearthrob Ringo.


As it turns out, McCartney, the Beatles' bassist and ringleader of the Rubber Soul through Sgt. Pepper era, had a singing voice that was hugely influential to the founder of the White Stripes, Raconteurs, and Dead Weather:

He's been a big influence on me — especially the way that he sings." White cited an early track as the point of inspiration for his Paul love. "I heard a cover song they did early on called 'Hippy Hippy Shake' that Paul sang, and I loved how high he sang it," White said. "My voice isn't comfortable in that higher range,  but that song was a big influence on me trying to get my voice somewhere like that."

The news seems so unlikely because we think of Jack White as so cool—and Paul McCartney as so uncool by Beatles standards. On the other hand, White has a point—McCartney's range in "Hippy Hippy Shake" is higher than Jack White has ever been able to maintain, save for occaisional breaks into falsetto.





- 46 Essential Rock Reads, as Told by the <i>LA Times</i> Magnetic Fields, Stephin Merritt 69 Love Songs Turns 10 Years Old
Jack White
Paul McCartney
The Beatles
The White Stripes

Eh, I like Paul.

/site_media/uploads/images/users/mattycakes/Kate+Bush.jpg mattycakes

Nobody likes Paul.

/site_media/uploads/images/users/mburr/Photo 44.jpg mburr

I like Kate Bush.

/site_media/uploads/images/users/Kadgi/DSC04569.JPG Kadgi

mburr, are you really Heather Mills? Cus I know plenty that love Paul!

Mel B

Actually Jack White frequently sings higher than Paul on "Hippy Shake", even in "Broken Bricks"--and it's not falsetto.


oh my god no way! i bet his favorite monkee is davy! everyone knows john is the genius because he died young. come on jack white!


There's nothing uncool about being the greatest songwriter, bass player, and vocalist in the history of recorded sound. Watch the last episode of Late Night with Conan O'Brien to see my definition of uncool.


mburr get real - your statement is pure flatulance given that both mattycakes and I like Paul - so at least two of us like Paul... ...Probably nobody likes mburr!

eric cantona

No Paul = No Beatles.
Hence Paul is cool.
Listen to the White Album if you don't believe me.


Who is Jack White? Why should I care about his opinion?


Of course Paul is cool and to those of us who know what's what, he always has been. Paul was the "ringleader" through some of their most groundbreaking years when they got away from being a "teenybopper" band into being a band whose music was thought to be art. Whose tape loops were they on "Tomorrow Never Knows"? Those were Paul's, he'd been into that sort of experimentation for over a year by that point. Who came up with and played that whaling guitar solo on Taxman(and a number of others in fact)? Paul McCartney. Whose song was the wild Helter Skelter? Paul McCartney. Who came up with the swampy tempo for "Come Together"? Paul McCartney.

Who could scream with the best of them and had a fantastic vocal range. Paul McCartney. He could sing at the very top of the tenor range in full voice plus he could sing much lower, like his backing vocals on Come Together(there's an isolation track of that on youtube). There's also an isolation track of John's lead and Paul's backing vocal on Ticket to Ride and the notes Paul manages to reach there without going falsetto are pretty darn impressive. Whose voice in the harmony do you think it is making the "hide" on "I can't hide" cut like a knife on I Wanna Hold Your Hand?

Paul's instrumental versatility also came in real handy when John wanted to release "The Ballad of John and Yoko" quickly - that was John on vocals and guitar and Paul on everything else, so John was fine with it when it worked to his advantage.

Jack White knows what he's talking about. Sure Paul was lucky when he found John Lennon but make no mistake, John Lennon was damn lucky when he found Paul McCartney too.


Doesn't surprise me at all. `Doorbell' was one of those songs that could have been McCartney -early-70s. Now about McCartney's alledged `uncoolness', he's still cooler than most of us and if you analyse who did what in the Beatles you'll find that some of the coolest contributions were McCartney's. Lennon's songs Tomorrow Never Knows and Strawberry Fields got their psychedelic arrangements largely from McCartney. McCartney's post-Beatles peak came with Wings Over America in 1976, by which time Lennon had all but retired. You can't underestimate the impact of workaholicism, even if not everything it leads to is as great as Eleanor Rigby, Rockshow or Chaos and Creation in the Backyard

xavier baudet

How on earth can Paul McCartney be "uncool by Beatles standards"??? The writer clearly knows nothing about either the Beatles and McCartney.


Find us on Facebook

Latest Comments