Paul McCartney and Wings could hardly have been hotter when their second single from the Venus and Mars album, 'Letting Go,' entered the Billboard Hot 100 on 4 October, 1976.
Both the LP itself and its first single, the jaunty 'Listen To What The Man Said,' had topped the US chart, and the album had also gone to No. 1 in the UK and several other European countries. By now, the band were on the Wings Over The World tour, which stretched across the globe over some 14 months and spawned the triple live album Wings Over America, as well as a movie release and TV film.
'Letting Go' was one of the first songs recorded for Venus and Mars, recorded at Abbey Road Studios with Geoff Britton during his short tenure as drummer. Written, as was all the album, by Paul and his wife Linda, the brooding track was in great contrast to its upbeat predecessor as a single. Billboard's review, as you can see, picked up on the track's “vaguely ominous minor chord progression.”
Although it was the highest new entry on that American chart of exactly 40 years ago at No. 74, the Capitol single ran out of steam at No. 39, just three weeks later. In the UK, it peaked at No. 41. The third single from the album, 'Venus and Mars/Rock Show,' fared considerably better, hitting No. 12 in the US.
'Letting Go' still often features in McCartney's live set, featuring right after 'Can't Buy Me Love' in the first of his two shows on the current One On One tour in Cleveland, Ohio in mid-August. In 2014, it was covered by Heart for the tribute album The Art Of McCartney.