An Ever Present Past

Youth and Persona in Paul McCartney’s Self-Titled Solo Albums


  • James Millea Edge Hill University



Paul McCartney, Youth, Persona, Beatles, Covers, Voice


This article examines age in the work of Paul McCartney. It investigates how McCartney’s ongoing engagement with his own youth has shaped his musical output and accompanying visuals at key points throughout his career. It focuses specifically on the extended trilogy of self-titled McCartney albums, which culminates in two of his most recent releases, McCartney III (Capitol 2020) and McCartney III Imagined (Capitol 2021). Exploring Paul McCartney’s voice in his music and image in his music videos, this article considers the McCartney albums as a distinct statement on the role of age in popular music.

Author Biography

James Millea, Edge Hill University

Dr. James Millea is a lecturer in popular music and media and programme leader for BA Media in the Department of English and Creative Arts at Edge Hill University, UK. His research and teaching interests sit at the intersections of popular music and audiovisual media generally, publishing on such topics on both sides of the Atlantic. His current work explores the role of popular music in sports video games, as well as age and nostalgia in music videos and cover songs.






Articles – Special Issue