Albums Beatles Related Soundtracks

Paul McCartney – Give My Regards to Broad Street (EMI EL 26 0278 1) (1984)


Ageing 1960s rockers have been handed a major moral victory as the European Parliament is set to curtail the artists’ statutory responsibility for recordings they made in the 1980s. Among the very worst music of their careers, albums such as Dirty Work by the Rolling Stones, It’s Hard by the Who, David Bowies’s Never Let Me Down and Give My Regards To Broad Street by Sir Paul McCartney can currently be blamed on their creators for 50 years. New legislation restricts bad reviews to just 30 years meaning that critical maulings of these albums will cease sometime during the next decade. Proposals to completely expunge the albums from critical records and people’s record collections were dismissed as impractical, though a “Guns For Sh*tty Albums” bill has passed initial stages of a New York state assembly lawmaking process.

“Obviously I’m thrilled, you know,” said McCartney at a press conference yesterday. “I mean, what was I thinking redoing those Beatles songs [on Broad Street]? They were never going to have the swing and feel of the originals, were they? And, Jesus, wasn’t the ‘intolerable interference’ I sued the Beatles over because of Phil Spector’s OTT treatment of ‘Long and Winding Road’; then here I go and do the same f*cking thing! And please let’s never mind the movie itself. The words ‘vanity’ and ‘project’ spring readily to mind. Wow.”

“And what about those ridiculous white suits, ugh! I really should have laid off the herbs around ’82,” he added, shaking his head.

Clifford Snoats, rock critic, writing in the Columbus Grauniad, said, “While the four or so new songs on Broad Street are fair to middling, the feeble pun of the title, which is more suited to the Leisure section of the West Briton Post, and terrible cover are enough to dismiss the album outright. As an exercise in pointlessness, it really does take some beating. Only the hardest of hardcore Macca-philes would rate it.”

But others were more forgiving. “It’s not that bad,” argued Kent Beatles fan Eric Weiss, who bought the album at a bootfair while on vacation in Cornwall, UK. “I certainly would want to retain the right to, say, buy the album from a charity shop for a couple pounds.”

“I’ve got a cool book about the movie, too,” said the slightly sad Weiss, “that I’d picked up at another bootfair just a few months before.”

However, Weiss is under no illusions about the intrinsic worth of the album and was quick to pour scorn on Folkestone’s British Heart Foundation for charging £19 for their copy.

“Okay, maybe I’m a glutton, but what kind of stupid eejit is going to pay that?”

Eric Weiss’ “cool” book displayed on the Broad Street inner gatefold

4 replies on “Paul McCartney – Give My Regards to Broad Street (EMI EL 26 0278 1) (1984)”

despite believing otherwise at the time of the album’s release (the arrogance of youth), my musical knowledge was not expansive enough to be aware the title was a pun on the old al jolson standard, so it went completely over my head (and i’m sure i wasn’t alone there, especially in blighty where most of us only knew jolson for two things: being the first person to talk on film, and his black and white minstrels routine)…

also if that price asked for it by the BHF is true then things really are getting out of hand – a record shop i once used to frequent had so many copies of it hanging around that several ended up in the dumper!

unlike the album, the film itself seems to have disappeared without trace… maybe macca realised what an egomaniac he had become and in salutory shame destroyed all copies of it? whatever the reason for its low profile these days, in retrospect it would be interesting to watch this film not only for historical reasons, but to see if it was as bad as it as made out to be at the time…

btw, who is this guy clifford snoats who is now getting quoted? i’m guessing it’s another alias/persona of princeasbo (maybe an anagram of his given name… or maybe his actual given name ha ha!)

The BHF price was true–it’s never going to shift, is it?

Broad Street is available on DVD, though I’d have to see it for a pound or two before picking it up–I’m not actively searching for it.

Finally, speaking of poor wordplay, Cliffs Notes are short hand literary study guides for high school and college students. I started using Clifford Snoats as a music writer nom de plume when I attended Mount Vernon Senior High. Apologies.

purely by coincidence the following question was asked on tonight’s edition of “eggheads”:

“who wrote the screenplay for and played the leading role in the 1980’s film “give my regards to broad street”?”… perhaps unsurprisingly given that it was a giant turkey despite the abundance of the soundtrack album, out of the three choices the contestant (wrongly) picked “roger daltrey”!

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