Paul McCartney Reveals Pre-Performance Trick Little Richard Taught Him

via @lennonsmccartney | Instagram

Paul McCartney has been a part of the music world for almost 50 years. During that period, the Beatles vocalist absorbed knowledge and counsel from fellow musicians, especially rock ‘n’ roll legend Little Richard.

Following Little Richard’s debut, Paul McCartney rose to prominence with The Beatles.

Little Richard became a superstar legend in the American music community in the 1950s with famous singles like “Tutti Frutti” and “Good Golly, Miss Molly,” and performers like Big Mama Thornton and Sister Rosetta Tharpe revolutionized the style that would later be called as rock ‘n’ roll, which was glorified by Little Richard and later by Elvis Presley.

Following the death of Little Richard in 2020, Beatles vocalist Paul McCartney rushed to Twitter to offer several of his recollections of the deceased rocker.

“From ‘Tutti Frutti’ to ‘Long Tall Sally’ to ‘Good Golly, Miss Molly’ to ‘Lucille’, Little Richard came screaming into my life when I was a teenager,” McCartney recalled. “I owe a lot of what I do to Little Richard and his style; and he knew it. He would say, ‘I taught Paul everything he knows’. I had to admit he was right.”


Little Richard taught Paul McCartney a show preparation routine.

McCartney went on to recall his initial encounters with Little Richard in 1962. The Beatles were a budding band at the time, with gigs at Hamburg’s Star-Club.

“In the early days of The Beatles we played with Richard in Hamburg and got to know him,” McCartney stated in another tweet. “He would let us hang out in his dressing room and we were witness to his pre-show rituals, with his head under a towel over a bowl of steaming hot water, he would suddenly lift his head up to the mirror and say, ‘I can’t help it cos I’m so beautiful.’ And he was.”

According to Rolling Stone, McCartney said in 2017 that he had embraced Little Richard’s pre-show practice to be his own and had done for many years. “I do like a steaming before I go on, which I was told was probably the best thing to clear your larynx,” he said. “I was taught that by watching Little Richard do it when we were kids in Hamburg. He used to do it before he went on.”