The two surviving Beatles, Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr, came together at the Grammy Awards on Sunday for a rare joint performance coinciding with the 50th anniversary of the British group’s breakthrough on American television.
With McCartney at the piano and Starr at his drums, the two played a new song Queenie Eye, a catchy tune that hearkened back to the Beatles’ trademark hits. It was only the fourth time they had performed together on stage since a 2002 concert to honor the late George Harrison. John Lennon’s widow, Yoko Ono, and son Sean Lennon were in the crowd dancing along on Sunday.
McCartney and former members of grunge rock band Nirvana, including Foo Fighters frontman Dave Grohl, won best rock song for Cut Me Some Slack.
“I have to say that we wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for Paul and for Ringo. This song was 2 hours in my studio. I called up Paul and I said ‘Hey man, you want to come jam with some friends of mine?’ and he came over to the studio and we knocked this out in a couple hours and to me that’s what rock and roll is all about,” said Grohl.
“He’s right,” added McCartney. “He said to me, ‘Come Along and we’ll do a jam on Long Tall Sally.’ I said, ‘No we’ve been there, we’ve done that. We should just make something up and this is it.'”
On Saturday all four Beatles were given a Lifetime Achievement award by the Grammys. The group will further be honored with a tribute, The Night That Changed America: A Grammy Salute to the Beatles, that will be taped on Jan. 27 and air on Feb. 9.
The 56th Grammy Awards are the music industry’s top honors and are handed out by the Recording Academy across 82 categories.