It was just a day in the life of Paul McCartney, thrilling Beatles fans at the final show of his North American Freshen Up tour on Saturday—but during the encore, when McCartney announced “the one and only Ringo Starr” the crowd knew they were being gifted the rare opportunity of seeing two of the Fab Four get back together.
The concertgoers went wild, and Ringo beamed as he walked up to the microphone, where in a tender moment, Paul embraced him and kissed his forehead. Ringo shouted “Happy Birthday!” (like this was a belated gift for his July 7 birthday)
Then, he flashed his favorite peace sign and said “Peace and love” before taking a seat at a second drum platform that was quickly wheeled out for the surprise reunion.
They didn’t let the fans down, moving right into the opening drum beats of Sergeant Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. (See the video below…)
Although Paul has performed at Dodger Stadium in recent years, it was almost 54 years ago they shared the stage here in L.A., when the Beatles performed during their penultimate tour gig in August 1966.
The duo has played together only a handful of times since 1970, and Paul was the one accepting a surprise appearance in 2013, when he joined Ringo and his All-Starr Band at their Radio City blowout on Starr’s 70th birthday. They also came together for the 50th anniversary Beatles Salute, which was filmed at the Los Angeles Convention Center, and they rocked the audience at the Grammy Awards in January 2014.
Ringo Starr has continued to be prolific with ongoing worldwide tours and a new album, released in 2017, called Give More Love. Paul quietly contributed on two of the songs on the album: We’re on the Road Again, and Show Me the Way, a love song Ringo wrote for his wife, Barbara Bach.
But musical connections aren’t the only way McCartney and Starr team up. The two are both activists for peace and love for all creatures. Last month was the 10-year anniversary of Meat Free Mondays, an effort spearheaded by Paul and his daughters to promote meatless meals once per week—and Ringo was there to endorse it.
Ringo and his wife’s charity, The Lotus Foundation, supports charitable projects aimed at “advancing social welfare in diverse areas”, such as substance abuse, cerebral palsy, cancer, battered women, homelessness, and animals in need. In 2015, the couple decided to auction off 1,300 of Ringo’s personal memorabilia, including the first pressing of the White Album with his fingerprints on it, and raised $9.2 million for the foundation.
Saturday night at Dodger Stadium wasn’t just a reunion of two of the most iconic musicians of all time. It was another emotional milestone to witness McCartney and Starr together again performing Beatles classics and sharing their gifts of peace and love: two souls who just keep getting better all the time.
(WATCH the reunion, uploaded by Kathy Kielar on YouTube)
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