The truth behind that remix of Macca’s ‘Nineteen Hundred and Eighty-Five’

300 white labels were pressed and some were available at London’s Phonica store

Remember the ‘mysterious’ white label SDE told you about at the end of March, that offered two remixes of Paul McCartney‘s Band on the Run album track Nineteen Hundred and Eighty-Five? The full story behind how this came about and who was responsible for it, has been revealed…

As reported on Billboard, it turns out that German DJ/remixer Timo Maas and Canadian producer James Teej were responsible for the release, with Maas having done some work on the Macca multi-tracks as far back as 2009. The German wasn’t really satisfied with his work at that time: “we never fully succeeded in working the parts to a point where I really felt the end result was worth passing along,” he told Billboard, and so the music lay dormant on his computer until last year, when James Teej came to visit and heard it.

Enthused, the pair then set back to work on creating the two remixes. They were sent to Paul McCartney who gave them his seal of approval.

“We secretly sneaked it into two vinyl stores in the UK and Germany in order to test the waters and understand how people would react to the music on face value. The response was a little hard to believe,” says Maas, adding, “Phonica’s London store’s phone was ringing off the hook like crazy for copies, and it went to No. 1 on their charts overnight. All of that got picked up first by i-D magazine, and made it all the way to the UK tabloids who speculated that Kanye West might be behind it.”

SDE would like to interject at this point and say that we had this story five days before i-D thank-you-very-much. Anyway, it’s certainly interesting to learn how this came about; especially to note the fact that it wasn’t MPL who put out the white label, rather Maas and his management.

Read the full interview over at

13 responses to The truth behind that remix of Macca’s ‘Nineteen Hundred and Eighty-Five’

  1. Simon F says:

    It’s not a patch on the 2003 Radio Slave remix of Temporary Secretary 12″. Now that really is worth hunting down.

  2. Andrea says:

    Sorry: forty years later

  3. Andrea says:

    Well we can’t really consider some remix, made some thirty years later, by some “DJ-slash-remixer”, as an Official Macca Release, can we? It’s a bit stretching it I think.
    Actually, I don’t understand what all the fuss is about. I consider myself as a fan, and I don’t have any interest in it whatsoever…

    • Paul Sinclair says:

      The whole of Twin Freaks was some “DJ-slash-remixer” (Freelance Hellraiser). The white label didn’t have- an MPL logo on it, apart from that, no difference at all. This is an officially sanctioned Paul McCartney remix like the Silly Love Songs promo, like Twin Freaks, like Steve Anderson’s “Deliverance” – to try and claim the Nineteen Hundred and Eighty-Five remix isn’t ‘official’ – given what we now know – is a bit silly, if you ask me.

  4. Darren Vickers says:

    Yeh, and now its 300 Euro on dicogs :(

  5. David Rubin says:

    So what this is telling us is that it is not an official Macca release. So why is it commanding so much money??

    • Paul Sinclair says:

      Macca approved giving them the multi-tracks, and approved the release. It’s him on the record, playing and singing. He wrote the song. Other than that, it’s not an official Macca release! :)

  6. Dave H says:

    You can hear a minute and a half of the 7″ and 12″ on the Phonica website. I thought it was going to sound like some dance floor classic but the three samples are really stripped back.

    Anyone heard the whole 12″?

  7. Svein says:

    I’d like to think that if this was “testing the waters”, the positive response confirmed whatever it was they wanted to get confirmed – hopefully that there’s plenty of interest in a more full release of the music!

  8. Colin says:

    It was also released as a 7″ on RSD in a run of 100 through Phonica (a radio edit version).

  9. Bjarne Laastad says:

    Hope there will be a download option at some point

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