Tonight’s Paul McCartney appearance on “Late Night with David Letterman” is historic in so many different ways—first and foremost Sir Paul has returned to the Ed Sullivan Theater where he and The Beatles first wowed America 45 years ago on the show of the same name.
McCartney and his band also performed el fresco from above the theater’s marquee, taking a cue from the Fab Four’s famous 1969 “Let It Be” rooftop concert in London atop Apple Records—the last time the band played together live. The pop king also spoke of his collaborations and friendship with the “King of Pop” Michael Jackson.
All of the “pomp and circumstance” surrounding McCartney and his appearance tonight are well founded. It has always amazed me that, despite his stature and accomplishments, he has often suffered through the years from critics quick to discount much of his music as inferior to that of John Lennon. While still in radio in the 80s, I actually addressed this with a letter to the editor of a paper that bashed Paul’s songs. If you look at his solo career alone, in fact, McCartney has produced, over the past 30 years, more than 35 Top 40 hits. This despite the fact that radio has largely ignored his newer records since the late 80s.
Indeed, he is royalty and, perhaps with the passing of Michael Jackson too soon still fresh in our minds, Paul McCartney will once again be celebrated, in life, as he so richly deserves.