Waterfalls (Paul McCartney song)

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Paul McCartney - Waterfalls single cover.jpg
Single by Paul McCartney
from the album McCartney II
B-side"Check My Machine"
Released13 June 1980
RecordedJuly–August 1979
GenreSoft rock
Length4:43 (Album Version)
3:20 (DJ Edit)
LabelParlophone/EMI (UK)
Columbia (US)
Songwriter(s)Paul McCartney
Producer(s)Paul McCartney
Paul McCartney singles chronology
"Coming Up"
"Temporary Secretary"
McCartney II track listing
11 tracks
Side one
  1. "Coming Up"
  2. "Temporary Secretary"
  3. "On the Way"
  4. "Waterfalls"
  5. "Nobody Knows"
Side two
  1. "Front Parlour"
  2. "Summer's Day Song"
  3. "Frozen Jap"
  4. "Bogey Music"
  5. "Darkroom"
  6. "One of These Days"

"Waterfalls" is a Paul McCartney ballad from his first solo album after Wings, McCartney II. The song has a stripped-down sound, with McCartney only playing a Fender Rhodes electric piano and a synthesizer and singing, and a short solo most likely played on an acoustic guitar. It was released as a single with "Check My Machine" as its B-Side and reached chart position #9 in the UK.[1][2] In the US, however, it was his first single ever to miss the Billboard Hot 100 chart, only reaching number 106 despite being the follow-up to the number one hit "Coming Up".[3] In 2013, Rolling Stone rated it the #25 all-time Paul McCartney post-Beatles song, describing how it contrasted with Wings' prior single.[4]

When questioned on singles he wished were more successful, McCartney stated, "There's quite a few, actually. ... 'Waterfalls', I think is nice." He also commented that TLC's single "Waterfalls" carries elements of his song.[4][5]


Other versions[edit]

Sloan recorded a more uptempo version of the song on the McCartney tribute album Listen To What The Man Said.[6]


  1. ^ "Waterfalls". Retrieved 2009-03-28.
  2. ^ "Official Charts: Paul McCartney". The Official UK Charts Company. Retrieved 2011-10-13.
  3. ^ Chip Madinger & Mark Easter, Eight Arms To Hold You: The Solo Beatles Compendium (Chesterfield, MO: 44.1 Productions, 2000), 250.
  4. ^ a b "Paul's 40 Greatest Solo Songs". Special Collector's Edition: Paul McCartney. Rolling Stone. 2013. p. 89.
  5. ^ "Paul McCartney". The A.V. Club. Retrieved 2009-08-29.
  6. ^ Patrick Berkery (Oct 10, 2001). "Various Artists (reviews)". Philadelphia Weekly. Retrieved 4 April 2010.