Picasso's Last Words (Drink to Me)

Album: Band On The Run (1973)

Songfacts®:

  • The famed Spanish artist Pablo Picasso died at the age of 91 on April 8, 1973. News of the legendary Spaniard's passing reached Paul McCartney, when he was in Jamaica. While having dinner there with Paul McCartney, Dustin Hoffman told the story of the death of Pablo Picasso and his famous last words, "Drink to me, drink to my health. You know I can't drink anymore." Paul had a guitar with him and immediately played an impromptu chord progression while singing the quote. Thus, "Picasso's Last Words" was born, later recorded and added to the album Band On The Run.
  • The song features former Cream drummer, Ginger Baker on shakers.
  • Pablo Picasso (1881-1973) was one of the most inventive and prolific talents in 20th-century art. In his life he created over 20,000 artistic works, including his famous painting, Guernica, a commentary on the bombing of civilians in the Spanish Civil War. Picasso died in Mougins, France, while he and his wife Jacqueline were entertaining friends for dinner. His final words were "Drink to me, drink to my health, you know I can't drink any more." Sadly, Picasso's passing left a legacy of bitterness and confusion as the artist died without leaving a will and his family ended up fighting amongst themselves for control of his billion dollar estate.

Comments: 11

  • Don from Sevierville, TnActually, on the original Wings version, Denny sings the first verse, then Paul sings lead for the rest of the song.
  • Buddy from Branford, CtThe song starts off with Denny singing: a Grand old painter.... and..I dont think Bert Reynolds is on the cover of the album, unless hes hiding behind one of the other actors? LOL
  • Barry from New York, NcSomeone below (Charles, Charlotte, NC) claims that Burt Reynolds is on the cover of the BAND ON THE RUN album. Hmmmmm I've been looking for hours now and still can't seem to locate Burt. Are you REALLY sure Burt Reynolds is on the cover?
  • Bruno from Lima, PeruThe story about this song is that Dustin Hoffmann didn't believe that Paul McCartney could write a song about anything. So he went for the Time Magazine, looked for any new and when he found it he said to Paul: "Show me", or something like that, then, right in front of his eyes, Paul create the song and that was it.
  • Dave from Philly, PaAccording to a magazine article, Hoffman got very excited when McCartney started to compose the song lyrics on paper at dinner-running in to the other room and saying to his wife"...look, he's doing it...he's doing it."
    great song from a great record
  • Chet from Buffalo, NyIt's also on Denny's 1999 release "A Tribute to Paul McCartney & Wings"
  • Chet from Buffalo, NyOK, let's get it straight. Denny Laine does an acoustic version in which he sings the song and plays guitar on his album "choice rock cuts".
    Sir Paul is the lead vocalist on the classic original version which is part of the "Band on the Run" album. Their voices are not even slightly similar.
  • Charles from Charlotte, NcSince Hoffman's story was the genesis for the song, McCartney should have thanked him by letting him appear on the cover photo alongside James Coburn, Burt Reynolds and Paul and Linda.
  • Don from San Antonio, TxWhy couldn't he drink? If he was gonna die in less than 12 hours, ...you see where I'm goin with this...
  • Mike from Mountlake Terrace, WaI submitted this song. You may be right about it being listed as Paul McCartney and Wings, however it's not that significant considering writing credits are exclusively Paul McCartney's, it was produced by Paul McCartney and engineer Geoff Emerick. "Lead vocals" are that of Paul McCartney however, and also on bass, drums, guitars, and keyboards. Linda McCartney on backing vocal and Denny Laine on guitars and backing vocals. Tony Dorsey on saxphone.
  • Green Puppet from Calgary, CanadaThis should be listed as a "Paul McCartney & Wings" song. It was on Band on the Run and Paul himself doesn't sing lead on it. Denny does.
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