This is a great question.
I was introduced to the Beatles in 1964, at the age of 6, when I saw them on Ed Sullivan, and I just HAD TO HAVE "MEET THE BEATLES." And, my parents indulged me. I played that record on the Hi Fi (well, my Mom or Dad did-- mostly my Mom) over and over and over again...but, at some point, I lost interest.
FF to 1970. Age 12. Beatles already split up. It was at THIS point I became a TRUE Beatles fan. The very first album I got was MAGICAL MYSTERY TOUR, and the rest was history...for them as my favorite band.
Around this time (well, a tad later), the radio was filled with post-Beatles solo songs...Paul's "Another Day," John's "Instant Karma!," George's "My Sweet Lord" and "What Is Life," and Ringo's "It Don't Come Easy." Soon, I began hearing "Too Many People" on the radio, and thought it was a new Beatles song. Don't ask me why, but it just sounded like a Beatles song to me. I think, it was around this time I became a Paul fan.
A friend of mine was very into RAM, and he would play that, The WHITE ALBUM, and BEATLES '65 (talk about an odd trio of records!) all the time at his house, where we would hang, drink cokes, and listen to music during summer days when it was too hot and humid to play baseball (summer of '71). My friend was particularly enamored with RAM, and played it incessantly, and that was when I really became hooked on Paul's music. He also played ABBEY ROAD, and I always thought, wow, what a difference the Beatles and Beatle Paul sounded compared to RAM Paul. I thought ABBEY ROAD was such a great, polished rock and roll album-- nearly perfect-- and RAM was this strange sounding, funky, odd record, not anywhere near as polished as the Beatles...yet there was something about it that I loved-- particularly songs like "3 Legs" and "Too Many People," and "Smile Away."
I remember also getting heavily into the other solo Beatles, too, and got John's IMAGINE album. I remember listening to "How Do You Sleep?" and even at the age of 12, knew this was a vicious attack on Paul. The funny thing is, I LIKED the song. I thought it was incredibly clever, and George's guitar solo was magnificent-- it still stands as one of his finest slide guitar solos ever. But, as clever as the song was, I found it a bit sad that John would attack his friend like that, so this further endeared me to Paul.
And, the rest, as they say, is history...got EVERYTHING he did after that, on release days. And bought the McCartney album and "ANother Day" as well, to complete my McCartney library. A library that is quite big some 43 years later. I'm sure, like many of us here, I have things in the ol' library Paul doesn't even realize exists.
in years to come/they may discover/what the air we breathe and the life we lead are all about/but it won't be soon enough for me