Singer reveals the story in a new interview with Bob Mortimer
McCartney opened up about the song’s origins in an interview with Bob Mortimer. A clip from the interview was released which comes from McCartney’s upcoming biography, The Lyrics: 1956 To The Present, which is set for release on 2 November.
It will recount McCartney’s songwriting from his earliest compositions to the songs he wrote in The Beatles, Wings, and then on to his present solo career.
The clip sees McCartney talking about the story behind the song “Rocky Raccoon,” which contains the line: “Now the doctor came in stinking of gin/ And proceeded to lie on the table/ He said, ‘Rocky, you met your match’/ And Rocky said, ‘Doc, it’s only a scratch/ And I’ll be better, I’ll be better, Doc, as soon as I am able.”
McCartney told Mortimer: “I was riding on a little moped to see my cousin Betty. It was a moonlit night … I said, ‘Wow, look at that moon!’ When I look back, the bicycle is now [on its side] and there’s no way to get it back up. So I’m hitting that pavement.”
McCartney explained that he “smashed [his] lip” and was subsequently left bleeding after the accident with his cousin calling for a doctor.
“I think it was around Christmas time … well he [the doctor] was pissed,” McCartney added. “He said, “I think you need a couple of stitches’,” McCartney remembers, saying the doctor was slurring and had no anaesthetic.
He goes on to recount how the doctor was too drunk to thread the needle for his stitches. “And he’s trying to thread the needle but he can’t see it,” McCartney remembered. “So Betty takes it off him and she threads it.”
The trailer arrived as McCartney also announced a special edition of The Lyrics, which contain all the lyrics he’s written throughout his career.
The special edition book, which is limited to just 175 numbered copies, are each signed by McCartney and include a print of a lyric sheet.