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Paul McCartney Played Lady Madonna at One World Together At Home
Saturday’s “One World: Together at Home” concert event, organized by Global Citizen and the World Health Organization, brought together some of the most widely-beloved musicians on the planet for an evening that celebrated the efforts of global healthcare workers to fight the coronavirus pandemic. After the show, Global Citizen announced that it had raised more than $127 million in pledged donations from corporate sponsors for the WHO’s emergency response fund.
Stevie Wonder kicked off the event by paying tribute to his late friend, the singer and songwriter Bill Withers, who died earlier this month at the age of 81. Withers wrote a pretty perfect song for this moment, and Wonder honored his memory with his performance of “Lean on Me.”
Former Beatle Paul McCartney also delivered a stripped-down performance of the band’s 1968 song “Lady Madonna” in honor of medical workers. Earlier this week, Sir Paul talked the slightest bit of friendly smack about the Rolling Stones—who also happened to be in virtual attendance during the show.
Another highlight was Eddie Vedder’s performance. Vedder has an organ in his house, as one does, and used it to perform “River Cross,” the tender closer from Pearl Jam’s latest album, “Gigaton.”
And Elton John delivered a performance of his 1983 hit “I’m Still Standing.” It looks like a piano was wheeled into his back yard for the purpose (unless he has an outside piano, which is a definite possibility.) But most intriguing was the portable basketball hoop and two basketballs that John decided to keep in frame. Okay, so they probably belong to his kids. But it’s way more fun to think that he likes to shoot hoops after tickling the ivories.
Gabrielle Bruney is a writer and editor for Esquire, where she focuses on politics and culture.