The star is set to release his latest solo album ‘Egypt Station‘ on September 7 and sings about his past drinking habits on the track ‘Happy With You’. The track features the lyrics: “I used to drink too much/Forget to come home.”
Speaking to MOJO, McCartney described the song as “candid”. “I did use to get stoned and wasted,” he said.
He said he felt like he had self-medicated in the past, “most particularly in the period right after The Beatles [split up].” “I was bummed out and in the middle of this horrendous shit where someone was going to take every penny we’d ever made,” he explained.
“That wasn’t easy and led to a very difficult time in my life. I definitely self-medicated there and drank more than I ever had and probably more than I ever have since. But you go through it.”
Asked if he was unhappy while drinking heavily and taking drugs in the past, he replied: “That’s right. Also, I’ve got a lot of friends who are sober, cos they have to be. Like Ringo [Starr], [The Eagles‘] Joe Walsh. Because they just took it too far.”
He continued: “When we were growing up, everyone would be going to the pub and drinking but mostly it all seemed quite jolly. But when I talk to Ringo about it, he says: ‘No, if you give me vodka, I would have to finish the bottle.'”
McCartney said ‘Happy With You’ was “emphasising” with his Beatles bandmate, adding it told the story of how they “used to be doing crazy things, but you don’t now cos you’re happy.” “And Ringo is,” he said. “He’s very content with his life.”
The former Beatles bassist also reasoned that his family had had an effect on that part of his life. “I did used to get a little bit more crazy than I do now,” he said. “I’ve got eight grandchildren. I haven’t got the time. Grandad can’t just be sitting in his armchair with a great big doobie on and a bottle of tequila.”
He added that he now only drinks one glass of wine a week, but said: “It’s a big glass!”
Meanwhile, during filming for his recent appearance on Carpool Karaoke, McCartney recalled the time he spent nine days in a Japanese jail. He was arrested at Tokyo airport in 1980 after being caught with marijuana in his suitcase.
The star is due to play three headline arena dates in the UK in support of ‘Egypt Station’ later this year. Any remaining tickets are available here.
Paul McCartney will play:
Liverpool, Echo Arena (December 12)
Glasgow, SSE Hydro (14)
London, The O2 (16)