The two former Beatles reunited on stage for the first time in seven years during a concert in aid of the David Lynch Foundation, held at the Radio City Music Hall in New York City. The foundation, set up by the film director, promotes transcendental meditation in schools.
McCartney headlined the concert, singing a string of Beatles and solo career hits. At the end of his set, which included clips of Beatles footage, he introduced Starr as Billy Shears, before the pair performed ‘With A Little Help From My Friends’.
At this point we would like to introduce somebody to you who you know, you’ve heard his name.
He’s going to come out here and play you a little song this joyful night. Ladies and gentlemen: Billy Shears.
Starr, who had performed the songs ‘Yellow Submarine’ and ‘Boys’ during his own set earlier in the concert, then played drums on Sir Paul’s rendition of ‘Cosmically Conscious’, a hidden track on his 1993 album Off The Ground which was written in India in 1968.
The concert began at 7.35pm, and was filmed in full. It also featured appearances from Moby, Sheryl Crow, Jerry Seinfeld, Eddie Vedder, Ben Harper, Mike Love, Donovan, and Howard Stern.
Starr’s three-song set was performed with Ben Harper and his band, Relentless7. They played ‘It Don’t Come Easy’, which was dedicated to George Harrison, before Ringo sang ‘Boys’ while playing drums, and finally played ‘Yellow Submarine’ with Sheryl Crow and Eddie Vedder on backing vocals.
At 10.30pm McCartney took to the stage. The set list was as follows:
- ‘Drive My Car’
- ‘Got To Get You Into My Life’
- ‘Let It Be’
- ‘Lady Madonna’
- ‘Here Today’
- ‘Band On The Run’
- ‘Can’t Buy Me Love’
- ‘With A Little Help From My Friends’
- ‘Cosmically Conscious’
- ‘I Saw Her Standing There’
McCartney and Starr last performed together at a tribute concert for George Harrison in 2002, where they were joined by Eric Clapton at the Royal Albert Hall to perform ‘While My Guitar Gently Weeps’.
Also on this day...
- 2009: George Harrison to get Hollywood Walk of Fame star
- 1967: Mixing, editing: Within You Without You
- 1967: Paul McCartney flies to San Francisco
- 1964: The Beatles occupy the Billboard Hot 100 top five
- 1963: Live: Roxburgh Hall, Stowe School, Buckingham
- 1963: Radio: Side By Side
- 1962: Live: Cavern Club, Liverpool (evening)
- 1962: Live: Cavern Club, Liverpool (lunchtime)
- 1961: Live: Top Ten Club, Hamburg
Want more? Visit the Beatles history section.