They said it's her birthday - and Paul gave her a great time; . . . a private show costing $1m, all for a good cause.
MONEY can't buy you love - but it can certainly buy the ultimate birthday gift.
When it came to making his wife Wendy's 50th a memorable occasion, Ralph Whitworth decided flowers and chocolates did not quite fit the bill.
So he stumped up $1m to hire Sir Paul McCartney to play at a surprise birthday party.
In a rare private performance, the Beatles legend took to the stage for 90 minutes. He played a 19-strong set, including classics Let It Be, Yesterday, Back In The USSR, Lady Madonna, We Can Work It Out, Hey Jude and She's Leaving Home, for Wendy, a dedicated fan, and 150 guests at the party in California.
He then called the television executive on to the stage and gave her 50 roses before leading his band through a rendition of Beatles rock song Birthday while she danced at his side.
American financier Ralph offered Sir Paul $1m (pounds 636,000) for the personal show, one of the smallest gigs he has played.
The former Beatle agreed on condition he could donate the fee to AdoptA-Minefield, the anti-landmines charity backed by him and his wife, Heather. He said: ``Normally I don't do this sort of gig, but I was chuffed to do it because it was a win-win show. ``Ralph gets to be the great husband for organising the surprise, his wife gets a rocking party, I get to rehearse the band for the tour and, most important, Adopt-A-Minefield gets $1m.
``It was a very human evening and we all had a fabulous time.''
Heather Mills-McCartney, who was in the audience at the show, said the $1m would help many survivors of landmine attacks to rebuild their lives.
Heather said: ``This money will enable Adopt A Minefield to fit new limbs for thousands of landmine survivors so that they can walk again. This birthday party will be a great present for them.''
Wendy, the executive producer of CNN's Larry King Show, was joined by family and friends at The Ranch Blues Club, San Diego. Two hours after the party started, Ralph told the gathering: ``Now we're going to play a bit of rock and roll for Wendy'' - and Paul and his band took to the stage. The show doubled-up as a warm-up gig for his upcoming concert tour of Europe which starts next month. ``Wendy Whitworth's jaw hit the floor when Paul took to the stage,'' said one onlooking member of the McCartney crew. ``The gig had been arranged in total secrecy and only her husband was in on the secret. ``She was totally gobsmacked and she was reduced to tears by the shock of it all.'' Meanwhile, Sir Paul McCartney's spokesman Geoff Baker last night said details were still being finalised for the star's Liverpool concert later this year.
He confirmed a venue has been sorted out and an announcement will be made in the next few weeks.
McCARTNEY: Played private wedding gig for a cool $1m; HUSBAND: Ralph Whitworth
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|Publication:||Daily Post (Liverpool, England)|
|Date:||Feb 24, 2003|
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