New ‘McCartney 3, 2, 1’ Documentary Reveals All of The Beatles Secrets

by Emily Morgan
(Photo by Mark and Colleen Hayward/Getty Images)

Two legends in their own right, Paul McCartney and Rick Rubin, have recently joined forces for a new six-episode series titled “McCartney 3, 2, 1,” which arrives on Hulu this week. 

The new docuseries takes Beatles’ fans behind the scenes to get an invaluable glimpse at Paul McCartney’s prolific career, from his work with the celebrated band to his solo venture. 

In “McCartney 3, 2, 1,” McCartney reveals how the name “Sgt. Pepper” actually came to be before becoming one of the band’s most well-known and influential songs of all time. 

“I was on a plane with our roadie, and we were eating,” McCartney said in an interview on “TODAY.”

“And he said, ‘Can you pass the salt and pepper?’ And I thought he said, ‘Sergeant Pepper.’ I said, ‘What?’ He said, ‘Salt and pepper.’ I said, ‘Oh, OK. I thought you said, “Sergeant Pepper.”‘ So we had a laugh about that, but then the more I thought about it, ‘Sergeant Pepper, that’s kind of a cool character.'”

The anecdote behind that album title is just one of the many revelations about the Fab Four that the 79-year-old spills to the legendary producer. In the series, McCartney also revealed that the Beach Boys’ 1966 album Pet Sounds inspired them to make their own masterpiece in “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.”

McCartney Reveals Details Behind The Beatles’ in New Series

“We heard Pet Sounds, and [we said], ‘All right, we’ve got to do something better than that.’ So we did ‘Sgt. Pepper,'” said McCartney. He added that getting to play “alter egos of ourselves” took the pressure off of the band.

As McCartney describes, there was no formulaic method to crafting the tunes, and in fact, the band found inspiration in the most unexpected moments. 

“There was no recording devices, so you had to remember them,” said McCartney of their song ideas. “We realized, you know, we were writing songs that were memorable not ’cause we wanted them to be memorable, [but] because we had to remember them. There was a very practical reasoning.”

Additionally, McCartney couldn’t read or write music— making his footprint on pop culture and music all the more significant. “What it means that, it’s in here,” he says, pointing to his head. “It’s not all over the paper.”

The series is directed by Oscar-nominated filmmaker Zachary Heinzerling, who oversaw Beyonce’s 2013 documentary, Self-Titled.

“McCartney 3, 2, 1” will be available to stream beginning Friday. To stream each episode of the new series, you can sign up for a subscription with Hulu. Hulu subscriptions start at $5.99 a month, $11.99 per month for Hulu (No Ads), and $64.99 for Hulu + Live TV.

Moreso, if you don’t own the songs that McCartney and Rubin revisit in the series there’s an easy way to stream them. You can sign up for a 30-day free trial to Amazon Music Unlimited, which gives you access to the Beatles and Wings’ discography, in addition to all of McCartney’s solo albums.