The story of Wings and Paul McCartney's iconic James Bond theme Live and Let Die

Paul McCartney and Wings
(Image credit: Gijsbert Hanekroot/Redferns)

“As a writer who thinks of himself as part craftsman, the idea of writing a Bond theme is akin to being asked to make a bit of furniture for the national collection,” Paul McCartney said in the 2013 biography Man on the Run. 

In October 1972, McCartney was introduced to 007 film producers Cubby Broccoli and Harry Saltzman, who gave him a copy of Ian Fleming’s novel Live and Let Die. He read it in a day, and finished the theme song the next, with Linda contributing the middle reggae section. 

Thank you for reading 5 articles this month**

Join now for unlimited access

US pricing $3.99 per month or $39.00 per year

UK pricing £2.99 per month or £29.00 per year 

Europe pricing €3.49 per month or €34.00 per year

*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription

Join now for unlimited access

Prices from £2.99/$3.99/€3.49

Bill DeMain

Bill DeMain is a correspondent for BBC Glasgow, a regular contributor to MOJO, Classic Rock and Mental Floss, and the author of six books, including the best-selling 'Sgt. Pepper at 50.' He is also an acclaimed musician and songwriter who's written for artists including Marshall Crenshaw, Teddy Thompson and Kim Richey. His songs have appeared in TV shows such as 'Private Practice' and 'Sons of Anarchy.' In 2013, he started Walkin' Nashville, a music history tour that's been the #1-rated activity on Trip Advisor. An avid bird-watcher, he also makes bird cards and prints.