From My Collection

Tug of War Album signed by Paul McCartney

Tug of War signed album by Paul McCartney
Tug of War album signed by Paul McCartney
On 26th April 1982 Paul McCartney released the Tug of War Album.
I bought it on the day at the Virgin Megastore in Oxford Street. On coming out I saw a blue Mercedes car passing me – and realised it was Paul’s car! He was on the way to nearby AIR Studios.
Luckily there was a lot of traffic that day and I ran like hell, trying to get to AIR before Paul. On seeing me chasing him Paul pointed at me out of the car window and laughed. I just manage to get there before him. When the car pulled up, he said, ‘Training for the Olympics are we!’ We had a short chat and he signed my album.
Great memories.

Paul and Linda McCartney autograph in Soho Square

Paul and Linda McCartney autograph in Soho Square
Paul and Linda McCartney autograph in Soho Square

In June 1983 I had a day off work, and decided to spend it in Central London with my Beatles friends, Debbie and Zakka. It was a lovely sunny day, so we decided to go to Soho Square gardens for a picnic. It also just happened to be where Paul McCartney’s offices were (and are to this day).

We were delighted to see there was a light on in Paul’s private office, a good sign he was in the building. This was confirmed not long later when Paul came over to the window, spotted us, and did a crazy dance while laughing :>)

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Reflections on seeing Paul McCartney in concert

Paul McCartney in concert in London
Paul McCartney in concert in London
Paul McCartney in concert in London
Paul McCartney in concert in London
Over the years I’ve probably seen Paul McCartney live around 30-35 times. The first time was with Wings at Wembley Arena in December 1979. It was my first live sight of a Beatle, and Paul started his set with Got To Get You Into My Life – one of my all time favourite songs! I loved the show, but was surprised that the audience was quite subdued – I wasn’t.
I had a long wait for my second Macca show – but that was really special too. It was in July 1989 when Paul did a special ‘rehearsal’ concert at the Playhouse Theatre in London. Only about 3-400 people were there. It was the first time he’d done songs like Can’t Buy Me Love and I Saw Her Standing There since the Beatles.
A few weeks later he did full ‘Dress Rehearsal’ show at Elstree Studios – and did Sgt Pepper, Hey Jude, Back in the USSR, the Abbey Road medley etc for the first time ever live! Me and my friend just stood like statues at the end, just amazed at what we’d seen.
When Paul’s world tour came to London, I saw him seven times at Wembley. I wasn’t going to go to so many, but friends visited from all over the world, and many offered me tickets, so I couldn’t refuse.

Remembering George Harrison

George Harrison autograph
George Harrison

Today we are remembering George Harrison, who passed away in 2001. I was lucky enough to meet George on a couple of occasions – at the premiere of the Handmade Films’ How to Get Ahead in Advertising and a few years after that, at a concert by Ravi Shankar. In each case, they were very public events, and I barely got to say ‘hello’ – I would have loved to have the opportunity to sit down and have a long conversation with him, but it was not to be.

I was lucky enough to see George live at the Royal Albert Hall in 1992, his only solo UK concert. I’ve never been in a place where there was so much love. The ‘vibes’ were incredible. A brilliant moment was  While My Guitar Gently Weeps. Before the song, George said, ‘ ..and I’d like to bring on a blast from all our pasts – RINGO!’  – and the roof raised! During the song George sang ‘I look at you all…’ and rather than pausing, as he does on the record, he said ‘Quite nice actually’ – in his usual understated way.


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Meeting Paul McCartney

Paul McCartney with Richard Porter
Paul McCartney with Richard Porter in 1982

Over the years as a Beatles fan, I have had the pleasure of meeting Paul McCartney on many occasions. Here are a few pics of me with Paul.

This pic was taken in May 1982, outside AIR Studios in Oxford Street, London. I had been a Beatles fan for years, but pretty much on my own. After the tragic murder of John Lennon, I wanted to meet other fans, and put an ad in Beatles Monthly for penpals. One guy I wrote to, John Challis, told me he had met Paul McCartney many times in Oxford Street. I didn’t believe him at first, as I had been past the building he’d told me about, and didn’t even know there was a studio there. However, he persuaded me to come up to Oxford Street at about 6pm (the time he said Paul came out the studio) and I would meet him.

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