This past Wednesday was the 30th anniversary of John Lennon’s death. It’s a moving, rallying moment for Beatles fans every year, though round numbers tend to make such sentiments more easily graspable for mourners and media alike, and so it was on 12/8/10. For someone who felt and feels the impact of such a loss as closely as Paul McCartney, the year is less important, the month and day’s general gravitas much moreso. I’ve been lucky enough to see Paul twice now, and though those were shows in summerish months and years ago, his performance at each of “Here Today” — a song lyricizing an imagined, loving conversation with Lennon that he never found time to have — was always a misty-eyed showstopper. (After the first time I wrote: It’s amazing how closely you’ll listen to the lyrics of a song right after [Paul McCartney] tells you he wrote it for John Lennon.” Still true.) The lyrics aren’t subtle, the chords not particularly creative, both of which are, so far beside the point. You watch and hear Paul sing to his friend and it’s a reminder of how human these brilliantly creative men were, and how human it is to ultimately say goodbye.
I’m glad Paul did it last night. Keeping it balanced, Paul also joined Jimmy for a very special performance of “Yesterday,” with its original place-holding lyrics (“Scrambled eggs, oh my baby how I love your legs…”). Apparently it’s the first time Paul’s done any version of “Scrambled Eggs,” and it’s possible (probable?) Fallon’s staff pitched in with a couple of couplets in this rendition. It’s nice Macca engaged in some yucks, he’ll be music guest on the Paul Rudd-hosted SNL this weekend and if his past stints are any indication, will feature in a sketch or three. Anyway, both vids are here for you:
Prior comic relief comes via this Jimmy/Macca duet on “Yesterday”: