Paul McCartney’s 'Ram' Returns as Remastered Reissue
Acclaimed 1971 album, recorded with his late wife Linda, includes the hit “Uncle Albert/Admiral Halsey.”
The Paul McCartney reissues rollout continues May 22 with Ram, the 1971 album he wrote and recorded with wife Linda that produced his first post-Beatles No. 1 single.
The remastered Apple LP will get the deluxe treatment in a number of formats, ranging from a single-disc package to vinyl to a box set with four CDs, a documentary DVD and a slew of extras. A two-CD digipak will feature B-sides and “Another Day,” McCartney’s debut solo single that was included in a 1993 reissue of Ram.
“This is an album from a long, long time ago, when the world was different,” McCartney says in the press notes. “It reminds me of my hippie days and the free attitude with which it was created. I hope you're going to like it, because I do!"
It’s the fourth in the ongoing reissues of McCartney’s post-Fab Four career, following McCartney, McCartney II and Band on the Run. Ram topped the U.K. chart but peaked at No. 2 in the States, where it was denied the top spot by Carole King's landmark Tapestry. It spawned the singer-songwriter-bassist’s first No. 1 single sans Beatles in the sound effects-laden “Uncle Albert/Admiral Halsey,” which won a Grammy.
McCartney was 28 when Ram was released. He and Linda, who died in 1998, wrote most of the album on their farm in southwestern Scotland. Critical reception generally ranged from lukewarm to harsh -- Jon Landau’s Rolling Stone review of the LP began with, “Ram represents the nadir in the decomposition of Sixties rock thus far,” and piled on from there -- but latter-day notices have included five-star raves from such outlets as Blender and Allmusic.
Highlights of the reissue include a CD and limited-run vinyl editions of the album’s mono edition, which featured alternate mixes that were only made available to radio stations at the time. The Ram box set will include a CD of the mono material — the first time it’s been available in the format -- along with a 112-page book; photo prints; handwritten lyrics and notes; "Thrillington," an orchestral interpretation of the record; and a DVD of Ramming, a new documentary narrated by Sir Paul about the making of the album.
McCartney, who was this year's MusiCares Person of the Year and performed at the Grammys last month, begins a brief European concert tour this week. He and his band played the Ram track “Ram On” a few times on tour last year.