There are few names in music as big as Paul McCartney. As one-fourth of arguably the best rock and roll band ever, McCartney and his fellow friends from Liverpool became a permanent part of the zeitgeist in the 1960s, rising to levels of fame that most bands will never know. The Beatles were more than just four young men playing rock music though; they were icons of a generation, symbols of a cultural revolution.
Paul is turning 70 today, and we thought we'd take a look back at some of the big headlines he's made throughout the years. Being a member of The Beatles his life under a microscope that he's been contending with for about five decades. These are some of the high points in that long and illustrious career.
Ladies and Gentleman, The Beatles! - On February 9th, 1963, John, Paul, George and Ringo introduced themselves to the United States at large when Ed Sullivan, one of the biggest names in entertainment of all time, introduced them onto his stage in New York City. Over 73 million people tuned-in to watch them play "All My Loving" and "I Wanna Hold Your Hand." It is still one of the most highly-rated events on television, and it marked the begin of the "British Invasion," a pop-culture movement that saw many bands from across the pond make the leap to American audiences.
Paul Breaks Up The Beatles - Despite what some fans have intimated about the breakup of the band, it was actually Paul who filed the papers to dissolve The Beatles permanently. After months of fighting, on New Year's Eve 1970, papers were filed in court to break up the band completely, though it wouldn't be until 1975 when all the ensuing legal battles were resolved, and a formal agreement was made by all members of the group.
The Grass Was Not Greener in Tokyo - In 1980, Paul and his other massively successful band Wings were headed to Tokyo, Japan for a series of concerts when they hit a little snag. Within Paul's possessions at the airport in Tokyo was a stage of marijuana that Japanese officials were none-too-thrilled about finding. For ten days Paul was locked up in a Tokyo jail, awaiting word on what his fate would be. He would ultimately be let go without any charges filed and he was deported immediately.
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