Paul rocks the Hall! Update (3/17/99) An eyewitness report from Ray Kelly (thanks, Ray!):
"I questioned Paul McCartney at the press conference at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction on Monday night about what he is now working on. He said he finished work last week on "some rock and roll songs." He did not give a release date. Asked by another reporter about an upcoming album of classical music, he said it was news to him.
He spoke about Linda's photograph and the "Band on the Run" album. He sounded annoyed when somebody asked him if being inducted as a solo artist gave him a sense of "closure." He questioned the use of the word "closure" and said he was not dying next year.
Backstage, Paul chatted for a while with George Martin. A Hall of Fame crew member said that Paul did not bring a guitar to the ceremony and they "couldn't find one for him." I hope the full jams are televised tonight. Paul did "Blue Suede Shoes," "What I'd Say" and "Let It Be." Also, at the press conference Billy Joel said he was thrilled to have been inducted the same year as McCartney, citing the Beatles influence on him."
And some quotes from the induction ceremony:
''They (the Beatles) helped me to hear things that my ears couldn't pick up. They taught me a great deal.'' -- Sir George Martin. "I fell in love with the way she looked -- the beehive hair, the mascara, the purple shirts. It had no effect on me whatsoever." -- Elton John on Dusty Springfield.
''Out he stepped from the shadow of the Beatles, and there he was. It kind of blew my mind.'' -- Neil Young, in his speech inducting Paul McCartney.
''This one's for you, baby.'' -- Paul McCartney, as he ended his speech, dedicating it to Linda.
''You got me and John in this. What about George and Ringo? C'mon, guys.'' -- Paul McCartney on the absence of George and Ringo in the Rock Hall of Fame
One final note: On his radio show Tuesday morning, Howard Stern criticized the talents of Sir George Martin, saying he basically was elected to the Rock Hall of Fame for turning the knobs in the studio and listening to the work of geniuses. If only you were paid for your dignity, Howard ...
(3/16/99) Paul McCartney entered the Rock Hall of Fame last night with the Class of '99, including Sir George Martin, Dusty Springfield, Bruce Springsteen, Billy Joel and others. Neil Young introduced Paul, saying says he admired the way Paul was able to step out of the shadow of the Beatles. "I have a lot of respect for Paul for keeping a great family together." Paul, dressed in a black suit, told the audience he wished Linda was with him, then invited his "date," his daughter Stella, to the stage. Stella wore a sleeveless t-shirt that sardonically read, "It's about f---ing time," referring to the time it took to induct Paul into the Hall. Paul told the audience, "I love Cleveland because Cleveland gave me Linda's Mom and I love New York because New York gave me Linda! This one's for you, baby!" During the musical segments, Paul, backed by Paul Shaffer and Eric Clapton, performed "Blue Suede Shoes," dedicating it to Carl Perkins. "Carl Perkins, the man!," he was quoted as saying. He also backed Billy Joel on "What I'd Say" (at one point sharing a microphone with Dion) and he and Joel sang "Let It Be." Congrats, Paul! During the Rock Hall live coverage, it was revealed a film, called "McCartney," is in production by filmmaker Robin Bexter, who was at the ceremony. Sir George Martin was also inducted tonight in a speech by fellow record producer Jimmy Iovine. You can see a pic of Paul at the ceremony here.