Paul McCartney shares new essay on “magical” Glastonbury 2022 set

Dave Grohl, Paul McCartney, Bruce Springsteen, Glastonbury 2022

Paul McCartney has shared new reflections on the “magical” experience of headlining Glastonbury 2022, alongside new photos and footage from the night.

The Beatle headlined the Saturday night of this year’s festival – the first Glastonbury in three years – and played a mammoth, career-spanning set, welcoming special guests Bruce Springsteen and Dave Grohl.

In a new piece for the BBC, McCartney reflected on the experience and shared new backstage photos from the night, alongside footage of his band rehearsing ahead of the set.

He wrote: “Festivals are special, but Glastonbury is particularly so and it’s a big event in lots of people’s year. Because it had been cancelled in 2020 and 2021 due to Covid, it became more important to pull it off.

“I’d asked Bruce Springsteen in 2020 if he’d be happy to come onboard and he said yes, and he kept his promise two years later. So that was very exciting, having him and Dave Grohl up on the stage.”

See the new and exclusive photos and backstage footage from the night here.

Paul McCartney
Paul McCartney performs on the Pyramid stage during day four of Glastonbury Festival at Worthy Farm, Pilton on June 25, 2022 in Glastonbury (Picture: Dave J Hogan/Getty Images)

Of the Glastonbury atmosphere, he added: “It’s a pretty impressive scene for people in the audience, but we get the whole view up on the stage with the flags and the hills going back forever, so it was quite a big deal that they said yes to joining me in that experience.

“Of course, up on stage I can’t really see people’s reactions but I love to hear them because I’ve found myself doing that at concerts. I went to see James Taylor once and started blubbing because it was just so lovely! I was thinking, ‘Oh, I love this guy’ – I’m getting emotional even now!

“It’s a magical thing, knowing music can do that to people,” Macca added. “We’re the only animal on the planet that does that.

“Then you’ve got the spirituality of the place, knowing about the ley lines and everything else. When you have an event like Glastonbury and everyone comes together with good vibes and energy, I’m very happy to be part of that.”

NME‘s Sophie Williams named the set her favourite live show of 2022 as part of a round-up of NME writers’ best gigs of the year, writing: “There was something that was impressively relentless about the set: it never lagged despite its three-hour run time, while almost every song arrived with psychedelic visuals or, almost unbelievably, pyro.

“But it was the sight of Dave Grohl and Bruce Springsteen – two prominent Beatles obsessives – living out their dreams as they performed closer ‘The End’ with McCartney that was the most powerful spectacle of all. As a flurry of fireworks spread across the sky above, the trio repeated one word over and over: “Love.” For 180 minutes, it was everywhere.”

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