Paul McCartney Performs At Irving Plaza Before SNL’s 40th Anniversary Show

Sir Paul McCartney, you are one busy little Beatle.

The Gothamist is reporting that McCartney and his band performed a surprise Valentine’s Day concert at Irving Plaza in New York City. Once the announcement was made, tickets sold out quickly. The star-studded crowd was treated to McCartney in a raw, unpolished performance, which made the concert even more unforgettable.

The stars in the crowd included Meryl Streep, Tom Hanks, Rita Wilson, Steve Martin, Eddie Murphy, Chris Rock, Bradley Cooper, Leonardo DiCaprio, and Steve Buscemi. McCartney tweeted his thanks to them. A member of the audience, Daniel Ralston, then tweeted that one of them was recording the concert.

“Attention @nypd Meryl Streep is filming the Paul McCartney show on her iPhone. Please arrest this bootlegger.”

The crowd of less than 1,000 were treated to the 26-song set that McCartney pulled from his current tour set. McCartney played some Cavern Club material, including “Matchbox,” “Born In The USSR,” “One After 909,” and “It’s So Easy.” McCartney mixed in some Wings favorites, including “Let Me Roll It,” “Another Day,” “Jet.” Of course, there were the Beatles standard, like “Let It Be,” “Lady Madonna,” “Hey Jude,” and an Abbey Road medley.

For the Valentine’s Day holiday, the band played “Maybe I’m Amazed,” “All My Loving,” “And I Love Her,” “We Can Work It Out,” and “I’ve Just Seen a Face.” And for “My Valentine,” a recent ballad dedicated to wife Nancy Shevell, red confetti petals fell upon the crowd.

“That’s the big spectacular production number of this evening,” he noted.

Throw in a cover of Jimi Hendrix’s “Purple Haze,” and you have quite the show.

The New York Times is reporting that this concert, a prelude to McCartney’s performance on Saturday Night Live’s 40th Anniversary show, went about 100 minutes long, enough to whet the appetites of the concertgoers as well as those who couldn’t get tickets.

Kanye West, McCartney’s most recent collaborator and Grammy Awards stage jumper, was not present at this concert. This was for McCartney to showcase a Valentine’s Day performance. As Mr. McCartney said, “Tonight it’s all about love.”

The show was not polished like his other concerts. Indeed, when McCartney’s voice grew weak and ragged singing “Jet”, the band sallied forth to finish the song. Drummer Abe Laboriel Jr.’s efforts were allowed to erupt on the audience.

At the end, while performing the Abbey Road medley, McCartney reminded the audience, “The love you take, is equal to the love you make.” Most appropriate for Valentine’s Day.

[Image courtesy of paulmccartney.com]