Spies Like Us (song)

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"Spies Like Us"
Single by Paul McCartney
B-side "My Carnival"
(Paul McCartney & Wings)
Released 18 November 1985
Format 7" single, 12"
Recorded September 1985
Genre Pop/Rock
Length 4:48
Label Parlophone/EMI
Writer(s) Paul McCartney
Producer(s) Paul McCartney, Hugh Padgham, Phil Ramone
Paul McCartney singles chronology
"We All Stand Together"
(1984)
"Spies Like Us"
(1985)
"Press"
(1986)

"Spies Like Us" is the title song to the 1985 Warner Bros. motion picture of the same name, starring Chevy Chase, Dan Aykroyd and Donna Dixon. It was written and performed by Paul McCartney, and was a top-ten hit in the United States in early 1986, reaching No. 7 on the singles chart,[1] making it McCartney's final solo top 10 hit in the U.S. to date. It also reached #13 in the UK.[2]

Recording and release[edit]

Multiple releases were issued in the UK: a regular 7" single, a 7" shaped picture disc, a regular 12" single featuring extended mixes and the B-side "My Carnival" (a song by Wings from the Venus and Mars session) and a 12" picture disc.[3][4]

The minute-long outro is uptempo while the title is being sung repeatedly. When the movie Spies Like Us hit the theaters, producers opted to play the outro first in the closing credits before playing the entire song.

"Spies Like Us" was released on CD in 1993, as part of the release of The Paul McCartney Collection, as a bonus track on the album Press to Play. The B-side, "My Carnival", was released as a bonus track on Venus and Mars, and the 12" single was an exclusive to iTunes.

Music video[edit]

The video for the song, directed by John Landis (who also directed the film), was not aired by the BBC because Dan Aykroyd and Chevy Chase appeared in it playing instruments. British labour rules prohibit non-musicians from performing in videos, and Aykroyd and Chase did not actually play on the record, though both have worked as professional musicians. The video ends with McCartney, Chase and Aykroyd walking across Abbey Road, parodying the famous album cover.

McCartney, the song, and its associated film were all referenced in the Self song "Out With a Bang".

Track listings[edit]

7" single (R 6118)
  1. "Spies Like Us" - 4:40
  2. "My Carnival" - 3:56
    • Performed by Paul McCartney & Wings
12" single (12R 6118)
  1. "Spies Like Us" (Party Mix) - 7:10
    • Remix by John Potoker
  2. "Spies Like Us" (Alternative Mix - Known To His Friends As "Tom") - 3:56
  3. "Spies Like Us" (DJ Version) - 3:46
  4. "My Carnival (Party Mix)" - 6:00
    • Remix by Gary Langan

Personnel[edit]

Spies Like Us
My Carnival

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Paul McCartney > Charts & Awards > Billboard Singles". allmusic. Retrieved 2009-08-30. 
  2. ^ "Official Charts: Paul McCartney". The Official UK Charts Company. Retrieved 2011-10-13. 
  3. ^ "Paul McCartney - Spies Like Us at Discogs". discogs.com. Retrieved 25 April 2012. 
  4. ^ "Spies Like Us / My Carnival by Paul McCartney". rateyourmusic.com. Retrieved 25 April 2012.