A collection of all-star guests gathered in Washington, D.C. last night to celebrate Paul McCartney and Merle Haggard. The musical heroes are two of this year’s recipients of the Kennedy Center Honors, along with Oprah Winfrey, Bill T. Jones, and Jerry Herman. The annual event selects significant contributors to American culture.
Kris Kristofferson and Miranda Lambert paid tribute to Haggard with a cover of “Silver Wings.” Vince Gill and Brad Paisley teamed up for a Haggard-approved version of “Workin’ Man Blues,” while recent bustee Willie Nelson was first joined by Sheryl Crow for ”Today I Started Loving You Again,” then by Kid Rock and Jamey Johnson for “Ramblin’ Fever.”
For the McCartney side, No Doubt kicked things off with “Hello Goodbye” before putting their own ska spin on “All My Lovin’” and “Penny Lane.” Dave Grohl and Norah Jones lent their distinct voices to “Maybe I’m Amazed,” and Aerosmith’s Steven Tyler took on Abbey Road classics “She Came In Through the Bathroom Window,” “Carry That Weight,” and “The End.” James Taylor and Mavis Staples led the closing spectacular “Let It Be,” replete with audience members bearing glowsticks.
The performances will air on CBS on December 28.