Paul McCartney Biography
Guinness World Records described McCartney as the "most successful composer and recording artist of all time", with 60 gold discs and sales of over 100 million albums and 100 million singles, and as the "most successful songwriter" in United Kingdom chart history. More than 2,200 artists have covered his Beatles song "Yesterday", more than any other song in history. Wings' 1977 release "Mull of Kintyre" is one of the all-time best-selling singles in the UK. Inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a solo artist in March 1999, McCartney has written, or co-written 32 songs that have reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100, and as of 2013 he has sold over 15.5 million RIAA-certified units in the United States. McCartney, Lennon, Harrison and Starr received MBEs in 1965, and in 1997, McCartney was knighted for his services to music.
McCartney has released an extensive catalogue of songs as a solo artist and has composed classical and electronic music. He has taken part in projects to promote international charities related to such subjects as animal rights, seal hunting, landmines, vegetarianism, poverty, and music education. He has married three times and is the parent of five children.
James Paul McCartney was born on 18 June 1942, in Walton Hospital, Liverpool, England, where his mother, Mary (née Mohin), had qualified to practise as a nurse. His father, James ("Jim") McCartney, was absent from his son's birth due to his work as a volunteer firefighter during World War II. Paul has one younger brother, Michael (born 7 January 1944). Though the children were baptised in their mother's Roman Catholic faith, their father, a former Protestant turned agnostic, felt Catholic schools sacrificed the education of their students for the sake of their religious teachings, so he and Mary did not emphasise religion in the household.
McCartney had attended Stockton Wood Road Primary School from 1947 until 1949, when he transferred to Joseph Williams Junior School due to overcrowding at Stockton. In 1953, he passed the 11-plus exam, with only three others out of ninety examinees, gaining admission to the Liverpool Institute. In 1954, he met schoolmate George Harrison on the bus to the Institute from his suburban home in Speke. Harrison had also passed the exam, meaning he could attend a grammar school rather than a secondary modern school, where most pupils went until becoming eligible to work. The two quickly became friends; McCartney later admitted: "I tended to talk down to him because he was a year younger."
Exterior of a two-story brick building, with a hedge in front of it. Six windows are visible, three on each level, as are two doorways on the lower level.
McCartney's mother Mary was a midwife and the family's primary wage earner, enabling them to move into 20 Forthlin Road in Allerton, where they lived until 1964. She rode a bicycle to her patients; McCartney described an early memory of her leaving at "about three in the morning [the] streets ... thick with snow". On 31 October 1956, when McCartney was fourteen, his mother died of an embolism. McCartney's loss later became a point of connection with John Lennon, whose mother, Julia, had died when he was seventeen.
McCartney's father was a trumpet player and pianist who led Jim Mac's Jazz Band in the 1920s. He kept an upright piano in the front room, encouraged his sons to be musical and advised Paul to take piano lessons, but he preferred to learn by ear.Jim gave Paul a nickel-plated trumpet for his fourteenth birthday, but when rock and roll became popular on Radio Luxembourg, McCartney traded it for a £15 Framus Zenith (model 17) acoustic guitar, rationalising that it would be difficult to sing while playing a trumpet. He found it difficult to play guitar right-handed, but after noticing a poster advertising a Slim Whitman concert and realising that Whitman also played left-handed, he reversed the order of the strings.
McCartney wrote his first song, "I Lost My Little Girl", on the Zenith, and composed another early tune that would become "When I'm Sixty-Four" on the piano. American rhythm and blues influenced him, and Little Richard was his schoolboy idol; "Long Tall Sally" was the first song McCartney performed in public, at a Butlins holiday camp talent competition.
At the age of fifteen, McCartney met Lennon and his band, the Quarrymen, at the St Peter's Church Hall fête in Woolton on 6 July 1957. The Quarrymen played a mix of rock and roll and skiffle, a type of popular music with jazz, blues and folk influences. The band invited McCartney to join soon afterwards as a rhythm guitarist, and he formed a close working relationship with Lennon. Harrison joined in 1958 as lead guitarist, followed by Lennon's art school friend Stuart Sutcliffe on bass, in 1960. By May 1960 the band had tried several names, including Beatals, Johnny and the Moondogs and the Silver Beetles. They adopted the name the Beatles in August 1960 and recruited drummer Pete Best shortly before a five-engagement residency in Hamburg.
Informally represented by Allan Williams, the Beatles' first booking was for a series of performances in Hamburg, starting in 1960. In 1961, Sutcliffe left the band and McCartney reluctantly became their bass player. They recorded professionally for the first time while in Hamburg, credited as the Beat Brothers, as the backing band for English singer Tony Sheridan on the single "My Bonnie". This brought them to the attention of Brian Epstein, a key figure in their subsequent development and success. He became their manager in January 1962. Ringo Starr replaced Best in August, and the band had their first hit, "Love Me Do", in October, becoming popular in the UK in 1963, and in the US a year later. Their fans' hysteria became known as "Beatlemania", and the press sometimes referred to McCartney as the "cute Beatle".
In August 1965, the Beatles released the McCartney composition "Yesterday", featuring a string quartet. Included on the Help! LP, the song was the group's first recorded use of classical music elements and their first recording that involved only a single band member. "Yesterday" became the most covered song in popular music history. Later that year, during recording sessions for the album Rubber Soul, McCartney began to supplant Lennon as the dominant musical force in the band. Musicologist Ian MacDonald wrote, "from  ... [McCartney] would be in the ascendant not only as a songwriter, but also as instrumentalist, arranger, producer, and de facto musical director". Critics described Rubber Soul as a significant advance in the refinement and profundity of the band's music and lyrics. Considered a high point in the Beatles catalogue, both Lennon and McCartney claimed lead authorship for the song, "In My Life". McCartney said of the album, "we'd had our cute period, and now it was time to expand." Recording engineer Norman Smith stated that the Rubber Soul sessions exposed indications of increasing contention within the band: "the clash between John and Paul was becoming obvious ... [and] as far as Paul was concerned, George [Harrison] could do no right—Paul was absolutely finicky."
In 1966, the Beatles released the album Revolver. Featuring sophisticated lyrics, studio experimentation, and an expanded repertoire of musical genres ranging from innovative string arrangements to psychedelic rock, the album marked an artistic leap for the Beatles. The first of three consecutive McCartney A-sides, the single "Paperback Writer" preceded the LP's release. The Beatles produced a short promotional film for the song, and another for its B-side, "Rain". The films, described by Harrison as "the forerunner of videos", aired on The Ed Sullivan Show and Top of the Pops in June 1966. Revolver also included McCartney's "Eleanor Rigby", which featured a string octet. According to Gould, the song is "a neoclassical tour de force ... a true hybrid, conforming to no recognizable style or genre of song". With the exception of some backing vocals, the song included only McCartney's lead vocal and the strings arranged by producer George Martin.
The Beatles, holding marching band instruments and wearing colourful uniforms, standing near a grave covered with flowers that spell "Beatles". Standing behind the band are several dozen famous people.
The band gave their final commercial concert at the end of their 1966 US tour. Later that year, McCartney completed his first musical project apart from the group—a film score for the UK production The Family Way. The score was a collaboration with Martin, who used two McCartney themes to write thirteen variations. The soundtrack failed to chart, but it won McCartney an Ivor Novello Award for Best Instrumental Theme.
Upon the end of the Beatles' performing career, McCartney sensed unease in the band and wanted them to maintain creative productivity. He pressed them to start a new project, which became Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, widely regarded as rock's first concept album. Inspired to create a new persona for the group, to serve as a vehicle for experimentation and to demonstrate to their fans that they had musically matured, McCartney invented the fictional band of the album's title track. As McCartney explained, "We were fed up with being the Beatles. We really hated that fucking four little mop-top approach. We were not boys we were men ... and [we] thought of ourselves as artists rather than just performers."
Starting in November 1966, the band adopted an experimental attitude during recording sessions for the album. According to engineer Geoff Emerick, "the Beatles were looking to go out on a limb, both musically and sonically ... we were utilising a lot of tape varispeeding and other manipulation techniques ... limiters and ... effects like flanging and ADT." Their recording of "A Day in the Life" required a forty-piece orchestra, which Martin and McCartney took turns conducting. The sessions produced the double A-side single "Strawberry Fields Forever"/"Penny Lane" in February 1967, and the LP followed in June. McCartney's "She's Leaving Home" was an orchestral pop song. MacDonald described the track as "[among] the finest work on Sgt. Pepper — imperishable popular art of its time." Based on an ink drawing by McCartney, the LP's cover included a collage designed by pop artists Peter Blake and Jann Haworth, featuring the Beatles in costume as the Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, standing with a host of celebrities. The heavy moustaches worn by the Beatles reflected the growing influence of hippie style trends on the band, while their clothing "spoofed the vogue in Britain for military fashions", wrote Gould. Scholar David Scott Kastan described Sgt. Pepper as "the most important and influential rock-and-roll album ever recorded".
Epstein's death in August 1967 created a void, which left the Beatles perplexed and concerned about their future. McCartney, stepping in to fill that void, gradually became the de facto leader and business manager of the group Lennon had once led. His first creative suggestion after this change of leadership was to propose that the band move forward on their plans to produce a film for television, which was to become Magical Mystery Tour. The project was "an administrative nightmare throughout", according to Beatles' historian Mark Lewisohn. McCartney largely directed the film, which brought the group their first unfavourable critical response. However, the film's soundtrack was more successful. It was released in the UK as a six-track double extended play disc (EP), and as an identically titled LP in the US, filled out with five songs from the band's recent singles. The only Capitol compilation later included in the group's official canon of studio albums, the Magical Mystery Tour LP achieved $8 million in sales within three weeks of its release, higher initial sales than any other Capitol LP up to that point.
In January 1968, EMI filmed the Beatles for a promotional trailer intended to advertise the animated film Yellow Submarine, loosely based on the imaginary world evoked by McCartney's 1966 composition. Though critics admired the film for its visual style, humour and music, the soundtrack album issued seven months later received a less enthusiastic response. By late 1968, relations within the band were deteriorating. The tension grew while recording The Beatles, commonly known as the White Album. Matters worsened the following year during the Let It Be sessions, when a camera crew filmed McCartney lecturing the group: "We've been very negative since Mr. Epstein passed away ... we were always fighting [his] discipline a bit, but it's silly to fight that discipline if it's our own".
In March 1969, McCartney married Linda Eastman, and in August, the couple had their first child, Mary, named after his late mother. For Abbey Road, the band's last recorded album, Martin suggested "a continuously moving piece of music", urging the group to think symphonically. McCartney agreed, but Lennon did not. They eventually compromised, agreeing to McCartney's suggestion: an LP featuring individual songs on side one, and a long medley on side two.
On 10 April 1970, in the midst of business disagreements with his bandmates, McCartney announced his departure from the group. He filed suit for the band's formal dissolution on 31 December 1970. More legal disputes followed as McCartney's attorneys, his in-laws John and Lee Eastman, fought Lennon, Harrison, and Starr's business manager, Allen Klein, over royalties and creative control. An English court legally dissolved the Beatles on 9 January 1975, though sporadic lawsuits against their record company EMI, Klein, and each other persisted until 1989.
After the Beatles' break-up in 1970, McCartney continued his musical career with his first solo release, McCartney, a US number-one album. Apart from some vocal contributions from Linda, McCartney is a one-man album, with Paul providing compositions, instrumentation and vocals. In 1971, he collaborated with Linda and drummer Denny Seiwell on a second album, Ram. A UK number one and a US top five, Ram included the co-written US number-one hit single "Uncle Albert/Admiral Halsey". Later that year, ex-Moody Blues guitarist Denny Laine joined the McCartneys and Seiwell to form the band Wings. McCartney had this to say on the groups's formation: "Wings were always a difficult idea ... any group having to follow [the Beatles'] success would have a hard job ... I found myself in that very position. However, it was a choice between going on or finishing, and I loved music too much to think of stopping." In September 1971, the McCartneys' daughter Stella was born, named in honour of Linda's grandmothers, both of whom were named Stella.
Following the addition of guitarist Henry McCullough, Wings' first concert tour began in 1972 with a debut performance in front of an audience of seven hundred at the University of Nottingham. Ten more dates followed as they travelled across the UK in a van during an unannounced tour of universities, during which the band stayed in modest accommodation and received pay in coinage collected from students, while avoiding Beatles songs during their performances. A seven-week, 25-show tour of Europe followed, during which the band played solely Wings and McCartney solo material with the exception of a few covers, including the Little Richard hit "Long Tall Sally", the only song McCartney played during the tour that had previously been recorded by the Beatles. McCartney wanted the tour to avoid large venues; most of the small halls they played had capacities of fewer than 3,000 people. Of his first two post-Beatles tours, McCartney said, "The main thing I didn't want was to come on stage, faced with the whole torment of five rows of press people with little pads, all looking at me and saying, 'Oh well, he is not as good as he was.' So we decided to go out on that university tour which made me less nervous ... by the end of that tour I felt ready for something else, so we went into Europe."
In March 1973, Wings achieved their first US number-one single, "My Love", included on their second LP, Red Rose Speedway, a US number one and UK top five. Paul's collaboration with Linda and former Beatles producer Martin resulted in the song "Live and Let Die", which was the theme song for the James Bond film of the same name. Nominated for an Academy Award, the song reached number two in the US and number nine in the UK. It also earned Martin a Grammy for his orchestral arrangement. Music professor and author Vincent Benitez described the track as "symphonic rock at its best".
After the departure of McCullough and Seiwell in 1973, the McCartneys and Laine recorded Band on the Run. The album was the first of seven platinum Wings LPs. It was a US and UK number one, the band's first to top the charts in both countries and the first ever to reach Billboard magazine's charts on three separate occasions. One of the best-selling releases of the decade, it remained on the UK charts for 124 weeks. Rolling Stone named it Album of the Year for 1974, and in 1975 it won Grammy Awards for Best Contemporary/Pop Vocal and Best Engineered Album. In 1974, Wings achieved a second US number-one single with the title track. The album also included the top-ten hits "Jet" and "Helen Wheels", and earned the 413th spot on Rolling Stone's list of the 500 Greatest Albums of All Time.
Wings followed Band on the Run with the chart-topping albums Venus and Mars (1975) and Wings at the Speed of Sound (1976). In 1975, they began the fourteen-month Wings Over the World Tour, which included stops in the UK, Australia, Europe and the US. The tour marked the first time McCartney performed Beatles songs live with Wings, with five in the two-hour set list: "I've Just Seen a Face", "Yesterday", "Blackbird", "Lady Madonna" and "The Long and Winding Road". Following the second European leg of the tour and extensive rehearsals in London, the group undertook an ambitious US arena tour that yielded the US number-one live triple LP Wings over America.
In September 1977, the McCartneys had a third child, a son they named James. In November, the Wings song "Mull of Kintyre", co-written with Laine, was quickly becoming one of the best-selling singles in UK chart history. The most successful single of McCartney's solo career, it achieved double the sales of the previous record holder, "She Loves You", and went on to sell 2.5 million copies and hold the UK sales record until the 1984 charity single, "Do They Know It's Christmas?".
London Town (1978) spawned a US number-one single ("With a Little Luck"), and was Wings' best-selling LP since Band on the Run, making the top five in both the US and the UK. Critical reception was unfavourable, and McCartney expressed disappointment with the album. Back to the Egg (1979) featured McCartney's collaboration with a rock supergroup dubbed "the Rockestra". Credited to Wings, the band included Pete Townshend, David Gilmour, Gary Brooker, John Paul Jones and John Bonham. Though certified platinum, critics panned Back to the Egg. Wings completed their final concert tour in 1979, with twenty shows in the UK that included the live debut of the Beatles songs "Got to Get You into My Life", "The Fool on the Hill" and "Let it Be".
In 1980, McCartney released his second solo LP, the self-produced McCartney II, which peaked at number one in the UK and number three in the US. As with his first album, he composed and performed it alone. The album contained the song "Coming Up", the live version of which, recorded in Glasgow, Scotland, in 1979 by Wings, became the group's last number-one hit. By 1981, McCartney felt he had accomplished all he could creatively with Wings and decided he needed a change. The group disbanded in April 1981 following disagreements over royalties and salaries.
In 1982 McCartney collaborated with Stevie Wonder on the Martin-produced number-one hit "Ebony and Ivory", included on McCartney's Tug of War LP, and with Michael Jackson on "The Girl Is Mine" from Thriller. The following year, he and Jackson worked on "Say Say Say", McCartney's most recent US number one as of 2012. McCartney earned his latest UK number one as of 2012 with the title track of his LP release that year, "Pipes of Peace".
In 1984, McCartney starred in the musical Give My Regards to Broad Street, a feature film he also wrote and produced which included Starr in an acting role. Disparaged by critics, Variety described the film as "characterless, bloodless, and pointless". Roger Ebert awarded it a single star and wrote, "you can safely skip the movie and proceed directly to the soundtrack". The album fared much better, reaching number one in the UK and producing the US top-ten hit single "No More Lonely Nights", featuring David Gilmour on lead guitar. In 1985, Warner Brothers commissioned McCartney to write a song for the comedic feature film Spies Like Us. He composed and recorded the track in four days, with Phil Ramone co-producing. McCartney participated in Live Aid, performing "Let it Be", but technical difficulties rendered his vocals and piano barely audible for the first two verses, punctuated by squeals of feedback. Equipment technicians resolved the problems and David Bowie, Alison Moyet, Pete Townshend and Bob Geldof joined McCartney on stage, receiving an enthusiastic crowd reaction.
McCartney collaborated with Eric Stewart on Press to Play (1986), with Stewart co-writing more than half the songs on the LP. In 1988, McCartney released Снова в СССР, released only in the Soviet Union, which contained eighteen covers; recorded over the course of two days. In 1989, he joined forces with fellow Merseysiders Gerry Marsden and Holly Johnson to record an updated version of "Ferry Cross the Mersey", for the Hillsborough disaster appeal fund.That same year, he released Flowers in the Dirt; a collaborative effort with Elvis Costello that included musical contributions from Gilmour and Nicky Hopkins. McCartney then formed a band consisting of himself and Linda, with Hamish Stuart and Robbie McIntosh on guitars, Paul "Wix" Wickens on keyboards and Chris Whitten on drums. In September 1989, they launched the Paul McCartney World Tour, his first in over a decade. The following year, he released the triple album, Tripping the Live Fantastic, which contained select performances from the tour. In 1990, the US publication Amusement Business presented McCartney with an award for the highest grossing show of the year; his two performances at Berkeley earned over $3.5 million. He performed for the largest paying stadium audience in history on 21 April 1990, when 184,000 people attended his concert at Maracanã Stadium in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
McCartney ventured into orchestral music in 1991, when the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Society commissioned a musical piece by him to celebrate its sesquicentennial. He collaborated with composer Carl Davis, producing Liverpool Oratorio. The performance featured opera singers Kiri Te Kanawa, Sally Burgess, Jerry Hadley and Willard White, with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra and the choir of Liverpool Cathedral. Reviews were negative. The Guardian was especially critical, describing the music as "afraid of anything approaching a fast tempo", and adding that the piece has "little awareness of the need for recurrent ideas that will bind the work into a whole". The paper published a letter McCartney submitted in response in which he noted several of the work's faster tempos and added, "happily, history shows that many good pieces of music were not liked by the critics of the time so I am content to ... let people judge for themselves the merits of the work." The New York Times was slightly more generous, stating, "There are moments of beauty and pleasure in this dramatic miscellany ... the music's innocent sincerity makes it difficult to be put off by its ambitions". Performed around the world after its London premiere, the Liverpool Oratorio reached number one on the UK classical chart, Music Week.
In 1991, McCartney performed a selection of acoustic-only songs on MTV Unplugged and released a live album of the performance titled Unplugged (The Official Bootleg). During the 1990s, McCartney collaborated twice with Youth of Killing Joke as the musical duo "the Fireman". The two released their first electronica album together, Strawberries Oceans Ships Forest, in 1993. McCartney released the rock album, Off the Ground, in 1993. The subsequent New World Tour followed, which led to the release of the Paul Is Live album later that year.
Starting in 1994, McCartney took a four-year break from his solo career to work on Apple's Beatles Anthology project with Harrison, Starr and Martin. He recorded a radio series called Oobu Joobu in 1995 for the American network Westwood One, which he described as "widescreen radio". Also in 1995, Prince Charles presented him with an Honorary Fellowship of the Royal College of Music—"kind of amazing for somebody who doesn't read a note of music", commented McCartney.
In 1997, McCartney released the rock album Flaming Pie. Starr appeared on drums and backing vocals in "Beautiful Night". Later that year, he released the classical work Standing Stone, which topped the UK and US classical charts. In 1998, he released Rushes, the second electronica album by the Fireman. In 1999, McCartney released Run Devil Run. Recorded in one week, and featuring Ian Paice and David Gilmour, it was primarily an album of covers with three McCartney originals. He had been planning such an album for years, having been previously encouraged to do so by Linda, who had died of cancer in April 1998.
In 1999, he continued his experimentation with orchestral music on Working Classical. In 2000, he released the electronica album Liverpool Sound Collage with Super Furry Animals and Youth, using the sound collage and musique concrète techniques that had fascinated him in the mid-1960s. He contributed the song "Nova" to a tribute album of classical, choral music called A Garland for Linda (2000), dedicated to his late wife.
Having witnessed the 11 September 2001 attacks from the JFK airport tarmac, McCartney was inspired to take a leading role in organising the Concert for New York City. His studio album release in November that year, Driving Rain, included the song "Freedom", written in response to the attacks. The following year, McCartney went out on tour with a band that included guitarists Rusty Anderson and Brian Ray, accompanied by Paul "Wix" Wickens on keyboards and Abe Laboriel, Jr. on drums. They began the Driving World Tour in April 2002, which included stops in the US, Mexico and Japan. The tour resulted in the double live album Back in the U.S., released internationally in 2003 as Back in the World. The tour earned a reported $126.2 million, an average of over $2 million per night, and Billboard named it the top tour of the year.
In July 2002, McCartney married Heather Mills. In November, on the first anniversary of George Harrison's death, McCartney performed at the Concert for George. He participated in the National Football League's Super Bowl, performing "Freedom" during the pre-game show for Super Bowl XXXVI in 2002 and headlining the halftime show at Super Bowl XXXIX in 2005. The English College of Arms honoured McCartney in 2002 by granting him a coat of arms. His crest, featuring a Liver Bird holding an acoustic guitar in its claw, reflects his background in Liverpool and his musical career. The shield includes four curved emblems which resemble beetles' backs. The arms' motto is Ecce Cor Meum, Latin for "Behold My Heart". In 2003, the McCartneys had a child, Beatrice Milly.
McCartney and Starr standing on a stage facing each other both with microphones help up to their mouths. Both men are wearing dark suits, McCartney is wearing a pink shirt, and Starr a black-and-white print.
In July 2005, he performed at the Live 8 event in Hyde Park, London, opening the show with "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band" (with U2) and closing it with "Drive My Car" (with George Michael), "Helter Skelter", and "The Long and Winding Road". In September, he released the rock album Chaos and Creation in the Backyard, for which he provided most of the instrumentation. In 2006, McCartney released the classical work Ecce Cor Meum.The rock album Memory Almost Full followed in 2007. In 2008, he released his third Fireman album, Electric Arguments. Also in 2008, he performed at a concert in Liverpool to celebrate the city's year as European Capital of Culture. In 2009, after a four-year break, he returned to touring and has since performed over 80 shows. More than forty-five years after the Beatles first appeared on American television during The Ed Sullivan Show, he returned to the same New York theatre to perform on Late Show with David Letterman. On 9 September 2009, EMI reissued the Beatles catalogue following a four-year digital remastering effort, releasing a music video game called The Beatles: Rock Band the same day.
McCartney's enduring fame has made him a popular choice to open new venues. In 2009, he played three sold-out concerts at the newly built Citi Field—a venue constructed to replace Shea Stadium in Queens, New York. These performances yielded the double live album Good Evening New York City later that year. In 2010, McCartney opened the Consol Energy Center in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
In July 2011, McCartney played two sold-out concerts at the new Yankee Stadium. A New York Times review of the first concert reported that McCartney was "not saying goodbye but touring stadiums and playing marathon concerts." In September 2011, having been commissioned by the New York City Ballet, McCartney released his first score for dance, a collaboration with Peter Martins called Ocean's Kingdom. Also in 2011, McCartney married Nancy Shevell. He released Kisses on the Bottom, a collection of standards, in February 2012; that same month the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences honoured him as the MusiCares Person of the Year, two days prior to his performance at the 54th Grammy Awards.
As of 2013, McCartney remains one of the world's top draws. He played to over 100,000 people total during two performances in Mexico City in May, the shows grossing nearly $6 million.
In June 2012, McCartney closed Queen Elizabeth's Diamond Jubilee Concert held outside Buckingham Palace, performing a set that included "Let It Be" and "Live and Let Die". He closed the opening ceremony of the 2012 Summer Olympics in London on 27 July, singing "The End" and "Hey Jude" and inviting the audience to join in on the coda. Having donated his time, he received £1 from the Olympic organisers. On 12 December, McCartney performed with three former members of Nirvana: Krist Novoselic, Dave Grohl, and Pat Smear during the closing act of 12-12-12: The Concert for Sandy Relief, seen by approximately two billion people worldwide. On 28 August 2013, McCartney released the title track of his upcoming studio album New, which is due for release in October 2013.