London, November 29 : Sir Paul McCartney has revealed that he loves birds so much that he wanted to become an ornithologist as a kid.
"I've always liked birds. It's a theme of mine," the Sun quoted him as saying while discussing Electric Arguments by The Fireman, an album that's getting him some of the best reviews for many a year.
"I think they're symbolic of freedom, of flying away.
"As a kid, I was a keen ornithologist and had a little pocket book, the Observer's Book Of Birds. I lived on the outskirts of Liverpool and could walk just a mile to be in quite deep countryside," he added.
The 'The Beatles' legend admits that birds have hugely inspired his music.
"Somebody pointed out that I've written a lot of bird songs so, recently, I've become more conscious of it. There's Blackbird (on The Beatles' The White Album), Bluebird (on Wings album Band On The Run) and Jenny Wren (on solo album Chaos And Creation In The Backyard.)," he said.
A track in Electric Arguments, titled Two Magpies, seems to reveal McCartney's familiarity with the expression "one for sorrow, two for joy, three for a girl, four for a boy."
Asked whether he was superstitious, he said: "No, probably the only thing I'm superstitious about is magpies. Living in the country (at Peasmarsh, East Sussex), I see a lot of them. You see one and you spit or salute. I happen to spit."
He added: "I love it when you see two for joy. I don't shoot or catch them like a lot of people. They're not supposed to be good for other songbirds and a lot of keen gardeners don't like them, but I do. I've got lots. To me, it's double joy or triple joy. I'm very inspired on a spring morning if I see a crowd of eight."
Electric Arguments is the first Fireman album complete with lyric-based songs, for the previous two albums were ambient, electronic instrumental works.