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Thursday, 27th May 2010

Fast Facts and A Bunch of Video: Sir Paul McCartney and LC's Gershwin Prize for Popular Song

You've likely already heard the Sir Paul McCartney was awarded the 3rd Gershwin Prize for Popular Song by the Library of Congress. The award was announced on November 16, 2009.

Sir Paul joins Stevie Wonder*** (2nd Winner) and Paul Simon**** (1st Winner) as Gershwin Prize recipients.

The award ceremony will take place on June 2nd, 2010 in the East Room of the White House. The President and First Lady will be in attendance. After the award is presented, Sir Paul will play a concert.

That concert will air on Wednesday, July 28, 2010, at 8 p.m. EDT (check local listings) as "Paul McCartney: The Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song In Performance at the White House." The concert will be broadcast by PBS nationwide.

To learn more about Sir Paul and also enjoy a few of his songs, there is a lot of video available on the Internet (free) including several concerts and this 2001 interview with Charlie Rose.

You can also view this 2009 chat with David Letterman. He also performs four songs live on the marquee of the Ed Sullivan Theater, where Letterman records his program.

The Four Songs:

1) Band on the Run

2) "Back in the USSR"

3) "Helter Skelter"

4) "Coming Up."

The Gershwin Prize

The Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song celebrates the work of an artist whose career reflects lifetime achievement in promoting song as a vehicle of musical expression and cultural understanding. Within the context of the award, “song” is defined as either a single composition or a number that may be extracted from a larger work such as musical, film score, or television soundtrack. The styles in which these works are composed cross social, racial, and national boundaries, and reflect myriad contemporary traditions like rock, jazz, country, pop, blues, folk, and gospel. While song has always been considered a “popular” work, the advent of sound recordings and radio and television broadcasting at the beginning of the last century significantly extended audiences. It is “song” in this broadest definition to which the prize refers.

The winner of the Gershwin Prize for Popular Song is selected by, "Librarian of Congress in consultation with a board that is both credible and broad enough in scope to represent the full spectrum of popular song."

Learn More

Library of Congress Announces Gershwin Prize for Popular Song To Sir Paul McCartney

The White House Announcement: President and First Lady to Host Concert Honoring Paul Mccartney [sic] in the East Room

Music Legend Paul McCartney Named Recipient of Third Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song
Includes an extended bio.

The Gershwin Prize for Popular Song Web Page (via LC)

The Other Recipients

*** Stevie Wonder's White House Concert is Available on the PBS Web Site

**** Paul Simon's White House Performance is not available online. To learn more about Mr. Simon, this 2007 interview with Charlie Rose might be useful.

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