Sir Paul McCartney shares meaning behind Yesterday lyrics

Paul McCartney has revealed a touching story behind the lyrics of Yesterday.

The music legend explained a particular line from the 1965 hit, "I said something wrong, now I long for yesterday", was written in reference to a conversation he had had with his mother.

"Sometimes it's only in retrospect you can appreciate it," Paul said on his podcast A Life in Lyrics. "I remember very clearly one day feeling very embarrassed because I embarrassed my mum."

Paul explained he had corrected his mother's pronunciation and left her feeling embarrassed.

"She would talk what we thought was a little bit posh," he said.

"I know that she said something like, 'Paul, will you ask him if he's going...' I went 'Arsk?! Arsk! It's ask mum.' And she got a little bit embarrassed. I remember later thinking 'God, I wish I'd never said that.' And it stuck with me. After she died I thought, 'Oh f**k, I really wish...'"

Until recently, many had believed the song was about a relationship breakdown. Paul himself admitted he had thought the same thing.

"When she died, I wonder, 'I said something wrong', are we harking back to that crazy little thing," Paul said.

"So I don't know. Does this happen? Do you find yourself unconsciously putting songs into girl lyrics (about a lost love) that are really your dead mother? I suspect it might be true. It sort of fits, if you look at the lyrics."