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Paul McCartney wrote this with Denny Laine, his band mate in Wings. The song is a tribute an island in Scotland where Paul and his wife Linda had a farm. The Mull of Kintyre island is known for its beautiful scenery and tranquil atmosphere. After a difficult breakup with The Beatles, McCartney went there to avoid a nervous breakdown.
This was barely noticed in the US, but in Britain it was the best-selling single of the '70s, selling in excess of 2 million copies, which was more than any Beatles record. The US single was actually a bigger hit for its B-side, "Girls' School", than for this song. It peaked at #33 early in 1978.
In an amazing coincidence, the biggest hit singles of the 1970s in the UK and US - this song and Debby Boone's "You Light Up My Life," respectively - had virtually simultaneous chart runs. Even their reigns at #1 in their respective countries overlapped for 2 weeks in December 1977. (thanks, Joshua - La Crosse, WI, for above 2)