Entries in Paul McCartney (36)


"12-12-12" Concert: Music Superstars Rock Out for Sandy Relief

Kevin Mazur/WireImage for Clear Channel(NEW YORK) -- It was a night of music, comedy and celebrities at 12.12.12 -- The Concert for Sandy Relief, held at Madison Square Garden in New York City on Wednesday night.

While several top artists in the rock and pop genres performed for the MSG crowd, actors such as James Gandolfini, Jimmy Fallon and Jack McBrayer manned a phone bank where they accepted donations from viewers.

Forty cable networks televised and numerous websites streamed the event, the proceeds of which benefited The Robin Hood Relief Fund and victims of Superstorm Sandy.

Fittingly, the concert began at 7:30 p.m. Eastern time with a "local" artist -- New Jersey's Bruce Springsteen.  The Boss and his E Street Band kicked off his half-hour set with a performance of "Land of Hope & Dreams."

As he introduced "My City of Ruins," Springsteen noted that he wrote the song about Asbury Park, N.J.  He described the Jersey Shore as an area for both the rich and poor, adding, "I pray that that characteristic remains along the Jersey Shore because that's what makes it special."

Springsteen mixed "My City of Ruins" with a bit of "Jersey Girl," a favorite of Springsteen fans that was originally recorded by Tom Waits.

Springsteen was joined by another Jersey rocker, Jon Bon Jovi, for his final song, "Born to Run."  Springsteen returned the favor during Bon Jovi's set, teaming with the band on their hit "Who Says You Can't Go Home."

Springsteen and Bon Jovi were far from the only legendary rockers to take the stage over the course of the night.

Paul McCartney, the closing act, provided a special moment when he brought the former members of Nirvana on stage -- minus the late Kurt Cobain, of course, but including drummer-turned-Foo Fighters frontman Dave Grohl -- for a new song called "Cut Me Some Slack."  Sir Paul also sprinkled in some crowd-pleasers like "Helter Skelter" and "Live and Let Die."

The Rolling Stones, in the middle of a 50th anniversary tour, played just two songs, including "Jumpin' Jack Flash."  Mick Jagger joked at one point, "This has to be the largest collection of old English musicians ever assembled in Madison Square Garden."

That "collection" also included The Who, which saluted their late drummer, Keith Moon, by screening footage of him singing during their performance of "Bell Boy."  And as he took over vocals on "Baba O'Riley," Pete Townshend changed the lyrics "It's only teenage wasteland" to "It’s only Sandy wasteland."

The other artists on the bill were Long Island native Billy Joel; Manhattan's own Alicia Keys; Pink Floyd's Roger Waters, who was joined by Pearl Jam frontman Eddie Vedder; Eric Clapton; rapper Kanye West; and Coldplay's Chris Martin, who duetted with R.E.M. singer Michael Stipe.

The telecast featured celebrity appearances by Billy Crystal, Susan Sarandon, Adam Sandler, Ben Stiller, Kristen Stewart, Jon Stewart, Stephen Colbert, Diddy, Olivia Wilde, Steve Buscemi, Chris Rock, Seth Meyers, Brian Williams and Jake Gyllenhaal.

The marathon concert ended with Alicia Keys returning to the stage to perform “Empire State of Mind” as McCartney, firefighters, members of various public works departments and individuals personally affected by the superstorm gathered on stage.

An album of select performances from 12.12.12 will be sold on iTunes beginning on Dec. 18.

Here are the set lists from 12.12.12 -- The Concert for Sandy Relief, in chronological order:

Bruce Springsteen
"Land Of Hope And Dreams"
"Wrecking Ball"
"My City Of Ruins/Jersey Girl"
"Born To Run" (with Jon Bon Jovi)

Roger Waters
"In the Flesh?"
"Another Brick in the Wall (Part 2)"
"Us And Them"
"Comfortably Numb" (with Eddie Vedder)

Bon Jovi

"It's My Life"
"Wanted Dead or Alive"
"Who Says You Can't Go Home" (with Bruce Springsteen)
"Livin' on a Prayer"

Eric Clapton
"Nobody Knows You When You're Down and Out"
"Got To Get Better In A Little While"

The Rolling Stones
"You Got Me Rocking"
"Jumpin' Jack Flash"

Alicia Keys
"Brand New Me"
"No One"

The Who
"Who Are You"
"Bell Boy"
"Pinball Wizard"
"See Me, Feel Me"/"Listening to You"
"Baba O'Riley"
"Love, Reign o'er Me"
"Tea and Theatre"

Kanye West
"Jesus Walks"
"All Of The Lights"/"Run This Town"
"Diamonds" remix (featuring recorded Rihanna vocals)
"Touch the Sky"
"Gold Digger"
"Good Life"

Billy Joel
"Miami 2017 (Seen the Lights Go Out on Broadway)"
"Movin' Out (Anthony's Song)"
"Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas"
"New York State of Mind"
"The River of Dreams"
"You May Be Right"
"Only the Good Die Young"

Chris Martin
"Viva La Vida"
"Losing My Religion" (R.E.M. song; with Michael Stipe)
"Us Against The World"

Paul McCartney
"Helter Skelter"
"Let Me Roll It"
"Nineteen Hundred and Eighty-Five"
"My Valentine" (with Diana Krall)
"Cut Me Some Slack" (with Nirvana's Dave Grohl, Krist Novoselic and Pat Smear)
"I've Got a Feeling"
"Live and Let Die"

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Paul McCartney Says Yoko Ono Didn’t Break Up the Beatles

Lester Cohen/WireImage(NEW YORK) -- Back down, Yoko Ono haters: in a new interview, Paul McCartney says John Lennon’s widow didn’t break up the Beatles.

According to the L.A. Times, Sir Paul reinforced the position Lennon often took before his 1980 death, telling interviewer David Frost that the group was breaking up with or without Ono’s influence.

“She certainly didn’t break the group up, the group was breaking up,” McCartney says. “I don’t think you can blame her for anything.”

He adds, “When Yoko came along, part of her attraction was her avant-garde side, her view of things, so she showed him another way to be, which was very attractive to him. So it was time for John to leave, he was definitely going to leave,” with or without Ono in the picture.

The interview is scheduled to air Nov. 9 on the Al Jazeera English TV channel.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Springsteen’s Guitarist Calls England ‘Police State’ After The Boss and McCartney Silenced

Taylor Hill/FilmMagic(LONDON) — A Bruce Springsteen concert in London’s Hyde Park ended in controversy on Saturday night after The Boss’ microphone was cut off when the show ran over its allotted time.

Springsteen performed 29 songs, playing for more than three hours with several special guests as part of the Hard Rock Calling concert series. The set was already 30 minutes past its 10:30 p.m. curfew when Springsteen began the Beatles hit “Twist and Shout” with Paul McCartney. Before the song ended, the microphones had already been turned off.

Video shot by one of the 76,000 concertgoers, who braved rainy conditions, and posted on YouTube, showed the singers attempting to thank the crowd at the end of the show, but they could not be heard. Several in the crowd booed.

Steven Van Zandt, the lead guitarist for Springsteen’s E Street Band, vented on Twitter after the concert ended.

“One of the great gigs ever in my opinion. But seriously, when did England become a police state?” he tweeted.

“Is there just too much fun in the world? We would have been off by 11 if we’d done one more. On a Saturday night! Who were we disturbing?” he added, suggesting that the police focus on fighting crime instead of cracking down on noise violations.

In a statement posted on the Hard Rock Calling website, a spokesman for concert promoter Live Nation apologized to fans.

“It was unfortunate that the three hour plus performance by Bruce Springsteen was stopped right at the very end but the curfew is laid down by authorities in the interest of the public’s health and safety,” the company said.

Meanwhile London Mayor Boris Johnson distanced himself from the decision to end the concert, saying the musicians should have been allowed to “jam in the name of the Lord.”

Ultimately Van Zandt lay blame with city officials and not the concert’s organizers.

“English cops may be the only individuals left on earth that wouldn’t want to hear one more from Bruce Springsteen and Paul McCartney!” he wrote.

Later on Sunday, Van Zandt backed off his criticism slightly, tweeting “Nobody’s blaming England!”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Paul McCartney Turns 70

Dave Hogan/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- It seems like only yesterday that “When I’m 64″ became a reality for Sir Paul McCartney, but Monday, he hits an even bigger milestone: turning 70.

Of course, the Beatles legend hardly looks or acts his age, since he continues to remain a vibrant force as both a touring and recording artist.  In the last year alone he’s gotten married; collaborated on his first ballet, “Ocean’s Kingdom;” performed in North America, Abu Dhabi, Europe, South America and Mexico; released a new album of standard tunes, “Kisses on the Bottom;” was honored with the 2012 MusiCares Person of the Year award; received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame; directed his first music video; and played at Queen Elizabeth II’s Diamond Jubilee concert.

If that’s not enough, Sir Paul has plenty of upcoming plans in store for fans, including a performance at the opening ceremony of the Summer Olympics in London next month, a brand-new album that’s expected out in early 2013; and, of course, more touring.

All this activity would be impressive for a rock star at any age, much less one supposedly in the twilight of his career -- and that’s not even mentioning all of his previous achievements, which would take several days.  Let’s just say that McCartney’s work with The Beatles, Wings and as a solo artist has made him the wealthiest, and arguably most famous, musician on the planet.

While Macca himself has said his birthday plans will be low-key, that hasn’t stopped his well-known fans from offering their birthday wishes and marveling at his remarkable career:

Aerosmith’s Steven Tyler, whose band covered The Beatles’ “Come Together” for the 1978 movie Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band and who serenaded McCartney during the 2010 Kennedy Center Honors event, says his fellow rock legend really knows how to live life to its fullest.  “He’s got a whole second wind and a new childhood and a new marriage,” Tyler told ABC News Radio.  “Y’know, he’s gettin’ it every night on stage and hopefully in bed with his new wife!  God bless him.”

Phil Collins said he still can’t believe that as a kid, he was recruited to be an extra in The Beatles film A Hard Day’s Night, and now, today, he and Paul are friends and colleagues.  “Suddenly, 30, 40 years later, you’re playing with the guy and he knows your name and comes up and talks to you,” an incredulous Collins told ABC News Radio.  “It’s a little bit out of The Twilight Zone.”  And Phil, who’s basically quit making new music, says McCartney makes him feel a bit guilty about that.  “Every time I say that I’ve stopped, I think, ‘Well, he still going!’” he admitted.  “I admire him for keeping going.  So, happy birthday, Paul.”

The Beatles and The Beach Boys have always had a special relationship, and Brian Wilson, who turns 70 himself on Wednesday, has nothing but good wishes for his old pal.  Currently out on tour with the reunited Beach Boys, Wilson told ABC News Radio, “I hope he’s as happy as we are, and I wish him very much luck on his concerts.”

Eagles bass player Timothy B. Schmit told ABC News Radio that he wishes Paul “70 more years,” adding, “I learned how to sing from listening to him…His bass playing is so unique and powerful.  I learned a lot from him.”

Donovan, whose friendship with Paul and the rest of the Fab Four dates back to the mid ’60s, has a musical wish for McCartney.  “They say it’s your birthday /Buh-duh-duh-duh-duh-duh /It’s my birthday too, yeah,” the folk-rock great sang, delivering the opening lines to the classic 1968 Beatles tune “Birthday.”  He then added, “Well, I’m not 70 yet, but what I say is seven is a good number.”

Randy Bachman, of Guess Who and Bachman-Turner Overdrive fame, offered up some glowing praise for McCartney’s old band, saying, “As time goes by, anyone who wasn’t a Beatle fan, if you don’t become one now or tomorrow, you’re missing out on one of the greatest pleasures of life.”

Bonnie Raitt is another fan who admires Paul for “keeping going.”  “He is just non-stoppable,” she told ABC News Radio, recalling one of his concerts a few years ago where he blew her away by performing for three hours and playing an amazing guitar solo on a rendition of Jimi Hendrix’s “Foxy Lady.” “I couldn’t even believe it was him on guitar,” she said.  “He is really showin’ us how to do it…He’s just one of our greatest songwriters ever and such a great singer and a great person.  He’s just… not a jerk!”

Squeeze’s songwriting team of Glenn Tilbrook and Chris Difford were sometimes compared to McCartney and Lennon during their own band’s heyday.  Tilbrook told to ABC News Radio about Paul, “There’s not a time when I hear a Beatles record and don’t gravitate towards what he’s playing on the bass…If he did nothing else, his bass playing is amazing.  I wish him all the very best.”  Difford added, “‘Listen to What the Man Said’ -- that’s the first song that springs to mind.  I think he’s an incredible artist.”

And lastly, Faces/Small Faces keyboardist Ian McLagan, whose bands this year joined McCartney and The Beatles in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, said, “Happy Birthday, Paul.  God bless ya.  He never stops.  God, he’s amazing.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


"30 Rock" Live Episodes Featured a Beatle and a Kardashian

NBC/Jessica Miglio(NEW YORK) -- On Thursday night, the cast of NBC's 30 Rock performed two separate episodes live, one for East Coast viewers, and another for the West Coast.  This was the second time the show went live, and as in that 2010 on-air stunt, there were differences in both coasts' versions of the same episode, which centered on the sketch show TGS possibly ending its live shows.

Both episodes Thursday boasted on-air cameos from a celebrity, and while the West Coast saw a walk-on by Kim Kardashian, the East Coast was treated to seeing Paul McCartney.  As part of the live gag, both stars were shown a private bathroom to use in the show, and then they re-appeared at the end of their prospective episodes to joke about it. 

McCartney said he spent the episode off-camera unconscious in the loo after hitting his head.  Kardashian quipped she also spent the entire time in the bathroom, and in the closing moments admitted to breaking the toilet.

Other cameos included former Saturday Night Live star Chris Parnell, and Mad Men's John Hamm.  Parks and Recreation star Amy Poehler played a younger version of Tina Fey's Liz Lemon in a flashback, while Poehler's former "Weekend Update" co-anchor Jimmy Fallon played a younger version of Alec Baldwin's Jack.

NBC Nightly News host Brian Williams appeared on the West Coast version of the show, while the East Coast version ended with Baldwin suddenly making out with 30 Rock cast member Scott Adsit.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Report: McCartney Video Shows Celebs Signing ‘Tampon’ and ‘Enemy’

Dominique Charriau/WireImage(LONDON) -- In Paul McCartney‘s new video for his single “Valentine,” some of Hollywood’s biggest stars can be seen using sign language to translate the song’s lyrics. However, sign language experts tell the UK Sun some words were lost in translation.

For example, signers say Natalie Portman and Johnny Depp meant to sign the word for “appear,” but accidentally sign “tampon.” Depp apparently also attempts “Valentine,” but winds up signing “enemy.”

Despite the mistakes, the British Deaf Association is still applauding the video for raising awareness of sign language.

“It would have been nice if genuine deaf people had been used. But it’s still great,” says a spokesman.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Paul McCartney Honored at MusiCares Person of the Year Gala

MJ Kim/ ANGELES) -- Some of the biggest names in music, movies, and entertainment showed up Friday night in downtown Los Angeles to honor Paul McCartney at the MusiCares Person of the Year, an annual pre-Grammy gala organized by the charitable arm of the Recording Academy.

The performers and guests included Yoko Ono, Coldplay, Tony Bennett, James Taylor, Neil Young, Alicia Keys, Foo Fighters, Christina Perri, Joe Walsh, Katy Perry, Smokey Robinson, Bonnie Raitt, Tom Hanks and wife Rita Wilson, Motown founder Berry Gordy, David Crosby and, of course, the guest of honor: Sir Paul, who was joined by his wife Nancy Shevell and son James. 

On the red carpet, Smokey Robinson said that as a musician, McCartney "has definitely made a contribution that will live on and on and on forever and ever,"  adding, "He's gonna live through his music, like Beethoven." 

Joe Walsh, meanwhile, said McCarntey's bass playing -- not something that most people think of when talking about his greatest achievements -- was truly revolutionary.  On the red carpet, he explained, "Paul made a melody out his bass part. You could kinda sing some of them...and that melodic approach to the bass was unheard-of in those days."

Tom Hanks, meanwhile, believes that McCartney and the Beatles not only made timeless music, but they actually changed the world.  Recalling on the red carpet what it was like for him to hear the Beatles for the first time in early 1964, Hanks said, "My world was so palpably sad because of the assassination of John F. Kennedy and it was less than three months prior, so it was wintertime, it was bleak, it seemed to be raining all the time, it was cold and windy.  And then these guys came on, and everybody talked about it, and honestly, the world was different, as of then."

At the event, stars paid tribute to Sir Paul by performing songs from his catalog, including Beatles classics, solo hits and Wings songs.   McCartney told the crowd, "For me, obviously it's just fantastic to hear these fantastic artists singing my songs and making 'em sound so beautiful...putting the nuances on the songs that I didn't know were there, so it's just a fantastic evening for me."

McCartney himself kicked off the night by performing "Magical Mystery Tour" and "Junior's Farm," and later returned to the stage to play some tracks from his new album Kisses on the Bottom, as well as "Nineteen Hundred and Eighty-Five" from Band on the Run.  He closed out the night with the Beatles' Abbey Road classic "Golden Slumbers."

Recording Academy President Neil Portnow said that Friday night's crowd was bigger than last year’s attendance of 2,500, who showed up to honor Barbra Streisand, and so the final total raised for charity would likely eclipse last year’s record sum of $4.75 million.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Paul McCartney Finally Gets Star on Hollywood Walk of Fame

Dave Hogan/Getty Images(LOS ANGELES) -- Nearly 20 years after first being nominated to claim his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1993, former Beatle Sir Paul McCartney will get his star in a ceremony outside the Capitol Records building on Thursday. McCartney is the last of the Beatles to receive this honor.

“McCartney’s star will be lined up on the famed walk alongside his fellow Beatles, Ringo Starr, George Harrison and John Lennon in front of the famed historic Capitol Records building located at 1750 N. Vine Street,” according to a post on the Walk of Fame’s website.

The 69 year-old rock star attended the ceremonies honoring his band mates Starr in 2010 and Harrison in 2009 as their stars were unveiled in Hollywood.  Even the band itself has its own star.

McCartney was first nominated in 1993, but due to scheduling issues the ceremony never took place. According to the Walk of Fame’s website, Hollywood Chamber of Commerce CEO Leron Gubler will present McCartney’s star.

Thursday also marks the anniversary of the Beatles’ historic first appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show on February 9, 1964.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Paul McCartney Confirms Album Title; Reveals Track Listing

Dave Hogan/Getty Images(LONDON) -- Paul McCartney has confirmed reports that his album of standards, due in February, will be called Kisses on the Bottom.  

The title is Paul's cheeky play on a line from the opening track on the album "I'm Gonna Sit Right Down and Write Myself a Letter."  Its opening lines are I'm gonna sit right down and write myself a letter and make believe it came from you.  I'm gonna write words oh so sweet. They're gonna knock me off of my feet.  A lot of kisses on the bottom, I'll be glad I got 'em'."

McCartney has also revealed the album's track listing -- 14 songs in all, while a deluxe version will include two more, plus access to a download of a show at Capitol Studios, which will be available from the rock legend's website starting Tuesday, February 14.  The deluxe version also includes expanded packaging and liner notes.

As previously reported, Kisses on the Bottom includes guest appearances by Eric Clapton and Stevie Wonder on the tracks "My Valentine" and "Only Our Hearts," respectively.  Clapton also plays on the track "Get Yourself Another Fool."

Here's the track listing for Kisses on the Bottom:

1. "I'm Gonna Sit Right Down and Write Myself a Letter"  
2. "Home (When Shadows Fall)"
3. "It's Only a Paper Moon"
4. "More I Cannot Wish You"  
5. "The Glory of Love"       
6. "We Three (My Echo, My Shadow and Me)"  
7. "Ac-Cent-Tchu-Ate the Positive"
8. "My Valentine"
9. "Always"
10. "My Very Good Friend the Milkman"
11. "Bye Bye Blackbird"
12. "Get Yourself Another Fool"
13. "The Inch Worm"
14. "Only Our Hearts"

Deluxe CD Album Tracks:
15. "Baby's Request"
16. "My One and Only Love"

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Paul McCartney Letter Surfaces Offering Drummer an Audition

FPG/Hulton Archive/Getty Images(LIVERPOOL) -- A handwritten letter from Paul McCartney inviting an unknown drummer to audition for the Beatles was found folded inside of a book at a Liverpool yard sale, giving some insight into the band’s early days.

The letter was written on Aug. 12, 1960 — just days before McCartney and the Beatles left for a formative two-month gig in Hamburg, Germany. It was also two years before the band split with its first drummer, Pete Best, and replaced him with Ringo Starr, forming the band as we know it today.

The note offers an audition to someone who placed an advertisement in the Liverpool Echo just four days earlier. The ad was unsigned and said: “Drummer–Young–Free.”

In the letter McCartney offered the drummer a tryout, but noted that he must be able to travel almost immediately to Hamburg with the band, where they were said to hone their musical talents in low-rent clubs in the city’s famous red-light district.

“Expenses paid 18 pounds per week (approx) for two months,” McCartney wrote in the letter. “If interested ring Jacaranda club.”

The letter was signed, “Yours sincerely, Paul McCartney of the BEATLES.”

It’s not yet known what became of the unknown drummer — whether he auditioned, or if he just wasn’t able to impress the up-and-coming rockers.

The letter, found by an anonymous Liverpool antique coin collector, is set to be auctioned off next month at Christie’s.

The auction house said it is expected to draw more than 7,000 pounds ($11,000) when it’s sold on Nov. 15 alongside other pop memorabilia.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio