Paul McCartney given US honour
Sir Paul McCartney was made a Kennedy Center honouree by US president Barack Obama last night (05.12.10).
The Beatles singer and guitarist was given the award for contributions to American arts and culture, alongside other recipients; talk show host Oprah Winfrey, choreographer Bill T. Jones, composer Jerry Herman and singer Merle Haggard.
At a White House reception for the honourees, the President said: "They`re being honoured for their unique ability to bring us closer together and to capture something larger about who we are."
After the reception was a concert paying tribute to the recipients of the awards - hosted at the Kennedy Center in Washington by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton - which saw stars including No Doubt and Foo Fighters frontman Dave Grohl taking to the stage to perform songs written by Paul.
No Doubt performed `Hello, Goodbye` while Dave performed alongside pianist Norah Jones for Paul`s track `Maybe I`m Amazed`.
Aerosmith singer Steven Tyler then sung a medley of Beatles songs from their 1969 album `Abbey Road`.
The show was closed with a performance by James Taylor and gospel vocalist Mavis Staples, who played `Let It Be` and `Hey Jude`, which moved most of the crown, including Paul and the President, to their feet.
Paul later told the BBC: "It`s a huge honour. It is one of American`s highest honours and as a performing artist it is just great to get it.
"I am a big fan of this president, and I think he`s a great man."