Paul McCartney wasn’t (and isn’t) just a balladeer. He’s written all kinds of different types of songs (“Helter Skelter” for an obvious example) and he’s a brilliant bassist and song arranger. But there’s a reason he’s so well known for his ballads. He was (and still is) an incredibly gifted composer of ballads. These are his seven greatest ballads with The Beatles in alphabetical order.
“And I Love Her” – This song from 1964’s A Hard Day’s Night foreshadowed the rest of the songs on this list.
“Blackbird” – Ah, The White Album. The best album ever. I still remember the first time I ever heard this song. I was listening to The White Album for the first time and when I got to “Blackbird” I actually stopped the album and played this song again. I just had to hear it again, right away. I was that blown away by it. Today I still think it’s just as great.
“Here, There, & Everywhere” – I’ve heard McCartney say this is his favorite of all of the songs he has written. If you haven’t heard this yet then you must buy Revolver right now and check it out. It’s a stunning song.
“Hey Jude” – Possibly my favorite song ever. It’s a beautiful and moving song that still resonates just as much today as it did in 1968.
“I Will” – Another White Album treasure. Beautiful melody. Just a perfect song and it’s not even two minutes long. That’s one of the things I love about The Beatles songs, they didn’t stretch them out to make them artificially “epic.” If a song was best suited to be less than 2 minutes then that’s how they left it.
“Let It Be” – One of The Beatles most enduring songs. Also due credit must go to George Harrison for his great guitar solo.
“Yesterday” – Sure it’s overplayed. But there’s a reason for that. It’s an absolutely timeless song. And many people forget that at the time of it’s release it was actually not as “safe” as it sounds today. This was the first time a rock group used strings in a song in this way. As always The Beatles were innovators.