Pin It
Harry Styles Alasdair McLellan Alister Mackie
Harry StylesPhotography Alasdair McLellan, styling Alister Mackie

Harry Styles discusses going solo with Paul McCartney

Read an exclusive excerpt from the star’s Another Man cover story

This week, pop prince Harry Styles was unveiled as the A/W16 cover star of Dazed brother publication Another Man. With three covers and accompanying photo shoots by legendary photographers Alasdair McLellan, Ryan McGinley and Willy Vanderperre, the issue offers an unprecented insight into Harry’s world, where he’s come from and where he’s headed.

Released today, the magazine features a conversation between Styles and former Beatle Paul McCartney, in which they discuss surviving fame and staying grounded; an article written by his sister Gemma about his pre-X Factor childhood; and an interview with American TV personality Chelsea Handler who quizzes the star about everything from romance to religion.

Here, alongside an unseen image shot by Alasdair McLellan, we present an exclusive excerpt from his conversation with Paul McCartney, where the two pop powerhouses discuss going solo and creative independence.

Harry Styles: Can I ask you a question? When you first went from being in a band to being on your own, what was the creative side of that like? There’s obviously so much knowledge of who you were when you were in this group, did you find it at all difficult to think, ‘If I do anything different is it going to be right?’ How did you approach that first creative experience?

Paul McCartney: Yeah, well actually when the Beatles broke up, I was in the process of writing some stuff. So I just did something very simple, which was the first album I ever did solo called McCartney and it was just done in the front room sort of thing, really simple. I just had to get it out of my system. So I didn’t really think about it too much, I just did it. But then going on, there was this difficulty – you’re thinking, ‘Well, now what am I going to do, just make records that sound like the Beatles? Or, am I going to try and go in a completely different direction and do something that’s really not like the Beatles?’ So we started the group Wings, and then I just thought, ‘Sod it, I’m going to write some stuff that I want to write and keep it away from what the Beatles might have done with it.’ Once that was established with a few hits of my own, like Jet and Band on the Run and things like that, then I thought it was okay to do Beatles stuff again, because I’d proved a point to myself. These days I do lots of Beatles things, it doesn’t matter any more, I’m happy to do anything. But at first it was a little bit difficult, I must admit.

Harry Styles: The nice thing for me is that I’m not coming away from the band feeling like I wasn’t able to do what I wanted to do. I loved it and it was what I wanted but I’m enjoying writing at the moment; trying new things. I’ve been asking myself, ‘What do I want to say?’

Paul McCartney: It’s a good time in your life, after you’ve left something big and famous and now you’re actually doing your own thing, it can be great. I’m glad you’re enjoying it.

Another Man A/W16 is available to buy now.

Check out the Another Man website here!