Mrs. Vandebilt

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"Mrs. Vandebilt"
Single by Paul McCartney and Wings
from the album Band on the Run
B-side "Bluebird"
Released January 1974
Format 7" single
Recorded September 1973
Genre Rock
Length 4:38
Label Apple
Writer(s) Paul McCartney, Linda McCartney
Producer(s) Paul McCartney
Wings chronology
"Helen Wheels"
(1973)
"Mrs. Vandebilt"
(1974)
"Jet"
(1974)
Band on the Run track listing

"Mrs. Vandebilt" is a song by Paul McCartney and Wings from the album Band on the Run. The track was not issued as a single in the UK or US, but was a single in Continental Europe and Australia.

Writing and recording[edit]

The opening lines of the song are taken from the catchphrase of English music hall performer Charlie Chester. Chester's catchphrase was "Down in the jungle living in a tent, better than a bungalow, no rent";[1] the lyrics changed this to "Down in the jungle living in a tent, You don't use money you don't pay rent".

Howie Casey is featured with a saxophone solo.[2]

The song was recorded during the album sessions in Lagos, Nigeria. The studio suffered a power outage during the session, but the recording continued with backup generators. Additional overdubs were later done in London.[3]

The forced laughter that closed Mrs Vandebilt was influenced by Charlie Chester's effects on his studio audience. Wings added more laughter in London's AIR Studios after returning from Lagos, Nigeria. McCartney recalled: "The laughing? It started off in Africa. We were doing sort of daft laughs at the end. When we got back we eventually overdubbed this crowd of people who were laughing. It was great listening to the tapes, trying to select the little bit of laughter that we would use. Most of it was us, but we need a little bit to cushion it up. It was great listening to a roomful of people laughing in stereo. They were getting into all these laughing bits, and we were on the floor." [4]

Live performances[edit]

McCartney had not played the song live until a free concert on 14 June 2008 in Kiev, Ukraine, on account of it receiving the most requests in a web poll.[5] McCartney played the song in his concert for Quebec City, and then at Hayarkon Park in Tel Aviv, Israel, on 25 September 2008, his first show in Israel. It became a fixture in his setlist, as he also performed the song in Halifax, the first show of his 2009 summer tour, as well as in his three July 2009 performances at the Citi Field in New York City. In addition, the song was featured in his Up and Coming Tour in 2010, his On the Run Tour in 2011-12, and most of his Out There! Tour in 2013. It was dropped for the performances in Japan at the end of the latter tour in November 2013.

Use in sampling[edit]

  • Various elements from the song, such as the lyrics "ho, hey ho", were sampled in the track "Ho' Is Short for Honey" on 88-Keys' 2008 album, The Death of Adam.
  • The song's introduction is also sampled in a Big Boi remix titled "Mrs. Vandebilt Told Me", released online in 2014.[6]
  • The "ho hey" chant was used by The Lumineers for their 2012 hit "Ho Hey".

Personnel[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Solomans, Sam. "I Pinched Charlie Chester's Gags". Open Writing. Retrieved 30 May 2011. 
  2. ^ Madinger, Chip; Easter, Mark (2000). Eight Arms To Hold You: The Solo Beatles Compendium. Chesterfield, MO: 44.1 Productions. p. 189. 
  3. ^ a b Bruce Spizer, The Beatles Solo On Apple Records (New Orleans: 498 Productions, 2005), 174.
  4. ^ Gambaccini, Paul (1976). Paul McCartney In His Own Words. New York, NY: Quick Fox. 
  5. ^ "Bill King, Good To See You, Mrs. Vanderbilt", livejournal.com
  6. ^ "Big Boi". Billboard.