Off the Ground
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|Off the Ground|
|Studio album by Paul McCartney|
|Released||2 February 1993 (UK)
9 February 1993 (US)
|Recorded||November 1991 – July 1992|
|Producer||Paul McCartney, Julian Mendelsohn|
|Paul McCartney chronology|
|Singles from Off the Ground|
Recording and structure 
After planning another world tour in 1993 to promote the album, McCartney opted to record Off the Ground with his touring band. Blair Cunningham joined on drums to replace Chris Whitten, who departed to join Dire Straits. McCartney decided to record the album "live in the studio", meaning that the band would rehearse an entire song then record it in one take, instead of recording each vocal track and instrumental track separately. This approach gave a new, raw and direct feel to the work, but was not overly liked by critics. The compositions also seemed less complex than on Flowers in the Dirt, with some of them having been out-takes from the earlier album. "Mistress and Maid" and "The Lovers That Never Were", which emerged from McCartney's songwriting collaboration with Elvis Costello, made their appearance on this album. Unlike Flowers in the Dirt, however, Costello did not appear on Off the Ground.
McCartney's increased interest in social issues came to prominence on this album, with the anti-animal cruelty rocker "Looking for Changes" (McCartney and his wife Linda, both being long-time vegetarians by this time) or paeans for a better world ("Hope of Deliverance" and "C'Mon People"). The B-side "Big Boys Bickering" lambasted politicians, with the phrase "Big boys bickering, fucking it up for everyone" showing a more aggressive side to McCartney.
Release and reception 
|Entertainment Weekly||(C-) |
|Los Angeles Times|||
|The New York Times||(Favourable)|
The lead single, "Hope of Deliverance", was released in the last week of December 1992 and the album followed on 2 February 1993. While Off the Ground hit number 5 in the UK and reached number 17 in the US, where it eventually went gold, it was the first Paul McCartney album to not contain a sizeable US hit single since Wings' Wild Life in 1971. While "Hope of Deliverance" floundered there, it managed to reach number 18 in the UK, where "C'Mon People" became a minor hit as well. The album spent only six weeks inside the Top 100 in the UK, eventually reaching number 5 there. In Germany, the album was particularly successful and certified platinum with "Hope of Deliverance" reaching number 3 on the singles chart and the album spending four weeks at number 2. "Off the Ground" reached number 27 in the US Adult Contemporary chart.
Some weeks after its release, McCartney launched "The New World Tour", taking in many successful shows across the globe during the summer months. These gigs were documented on the album Paul Is Live, which followed at the end of 1993.
Although generally considered a slightly weaker successor to Flowers in the Dirt and now somewhat overlooked, Off the Ground is prized by many McCartney followers.
The feet on the album cover are of McCartney, his wife Linda and his touring band.
Track listing 
- "Off the Ground" – 3:40
- "Looking for Changes" – 2:47
- "Hope of Deliverance" – 3:22
- "Mistress and Maid" – 3:00
- "I Owe It All to You" – 4:51
- "Biker Like an Icon" – 3:26
- "Peace in the Neighbourhood" – 5:06
- "Golden Earth Girl" – 3:45
- "The Lovers That Never Were" – 3:43
- "Get Out of My Way" – 3:32
- "Winedark Open Sea" – 5:27
- "C'Mon People" – 7:42
- Followed by a hidden excerpt of an unlisted song called "Cosmically Conscious", originally written by McCartney in 1968 during The Beatles' stay in Rishikesh.
- Off the Ground: The Complete Works
Off the Ground: The Complete Works is a two-disc set released in Japan and the Netherlands. This edition included McCartney's rare use of swear words in the song "Big Boys Bickering", a protest song. Other notable songs on this edition are "Long Leather Coat" and "I Can't Imagine". Even though the album is called the "complete works", it is missing two B-sides and three promo remixes. Those tracks are "Deliverance" and "Deliverance (Dub Mix)", dance-oriented reworkings of the song "Hope of Deliverance", released as B-sides of the "C'mon People" CD single #1, and the three promo remixes of "Off the Ground" released to American radio, namely the Bob Clearmountain remix, the Keith Cohen remix, and the Keith Cohen AC remix. Also, when the iTunes Store added his catalog of music in 2007, they included "I Can't Imagine" as an exclusive bonus track on the album.
- "Long Leather Coat" (McCartney/McCartney)
- "Keep Coming Back to Love" (McCartney/Stuart)
- "Sweet Sweet Memories"
- "Things We Said Today" (Lennon–McCartney)
- "Midnight Special" (Arranged by "Lead Belly" Ledbetter/Alan Lomax)
- "Style Style"
- "I Can't Imagine"
- "Cosmically Conscious" - 4:39
- "Kicked Around No More"
- "Big Boys Bickering"
- "Down to the River"
- "Soggy Noodle"
Chart positions 
Year-end charts 
- Off the Ground at Allmusic
- Kot, Greg (1993-02-05). "PMccartney Back On Top Of His Pop Material". chicagotribune.com. Chicago Tribune. Retrieved 2011-10-22.
- Altman, Billy (1993-02-12). "Off the Ground Review". ew.com. Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 2011-08-31.
- Racine, Martin (1993-02-09). "Nice & friendly/Mushy Paul McCartney finally gets off the ground and Wings it". Retrieved 2011-11-04.
- Hochman, Steve (1993-02-07). "Paul McCartney - "Off the Ground" (Capitol)". articles.latimes.com. Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2011-10-18.
- Kozinn, Allan (1993-02-14). "RECORDINGS VIEW; Paul McCartney Reaches for Past Glory". nytimes.com (The New York Times). Retrieved 2011-08-31.
- Puterbaugh, Parke (1993-02-18). "Off the Ground by Paul McCartney". Archived from the original on 2011-08-29. Retrieved 2008-04-16
- Calkin, Graham. "Off The Ground". Jpgr.co.uk. Retrieved 3 May 2013.
- "australian-charts.com Paul McCartney - Off The Ground". Australian Recording Industry Association. Retrieved 2011-08-31.
- "Paul McCartney - Off The Ground - austriancharts.at". Retrieved 2011-08-31.
- Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved 2011-10-29
- "dutchcharts.nl Paul McCartney - Off The Ground". dutchcharts.nl. MegaCharts. Retrieved 2011-08-31.
- Billboard - 13 March 1993. Retrieved 2012-01-29.
- "InfoDisc : Tous les Albums classés par Artiste > Choisir Un Artiste Dans la Liste". infodisc.fr. Retrieved 2011-08-31.
- musicline.de chartverfolgung "McCartney, Paul - Off The Ground". hitparade.ch. Retrieved 2011-08-31.
- "Hungarian Albums Chart". Mahasz.hu. Retrieved 2009-12-03.
- "Hit Parade Italia - Gli album più venduti del 1993" (in Italian). hitparadeitalia.it. Retrieved 2011-10-03.
- ポール・マッカートニー-リリース-ORICON STYLE-ミュージック "Highest position and charting weeks of Off the Ground by Paul McCartney". oricon.co.jp (in Japanese). Oricon Style. Retrieved 2011-08-31.
- "charts.org.nz Paul McCartney - Off The Ground". Recording Industry Association of New Zealand. Retrieved 2011-08-31.
- "norwegiancharts.com Paul McCartney - Off The Ground". Retrieved 2011-08-31.
- "swedishcharts.com Paul McCartney - Off The Ground". Sverigetopplistan. Retrieved 2011-08-31.
- "Paul McCartney - Off The Ground - hitparade.ch". Retrieved 2011-08-31.
- "Paul McCartney UK Album Chart listings". UK Albums Chart. Retrieved 2011-08-01.
- "allmusic ((( Flowers in the Dirt > Charts & Awards > Billboard Albums )))". allmusic.com. Retrieved 2011-08-31.
- "Austriancharts.st - Jahreshitparade 1982". Hung Medien. Retrieved 2010-08-01.
- "Les Albums (CD) de 1993 par InfoDisc" (PHP) (in French). infodisc.fr. Retrieved 2012-01-29.
- Oricon Album Chart Book: Complete Edition 1970-2005. Roppongi, Tokyo: Oricon Entertainment. 2006. ISBN 4-87131-077-9.
- "Austrian album certifications – Paul McCartney – Off the Ground" (in German). IFPI Austria. Enter Paul McCartney in the field Interpret. Enter Off the Ground in the field Titel. Select album in the field Format. Click Suchen
- "Canadian album certifications – Paul McCartney – Off the Ground". Music Canada.
- "French album certifications – Paul McCartney – Off the Ground" (in French). InfoDisc. Select PAUL MCCARTNEY and click OK
- "Les Albums Or". infodisc.fr. SNEP. Retrieved 2011-08-31.
- "Gold-/Platin-Datenbank (Paul McCartney; 'Off the Ground')" (in German). Bundesverband Musikindustrie.
- a-ビートルズ "- Yamachan Land (Archives of the Japanese record charts) - Albums Chart Daijiten - The Beatles" (in Japanese). 30 December 2007. Retrieved 2011-08-31.
- "The Official Swiss Charts and Music Community: Awards (Paul McCartney; 'Off the Ground')". Hung Medien.
- "British album certifications – Paul McCartney – Off the Ground". British Phonographic Industry. Enter Off the Ground in the field Search. Select Title in the field Search by. Select album in the field By Format. Click Go
- "American album certifications – Paul McCartney – Off the Ground". Recording Industry Association of America. If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Album, then click SEARCH