It was 41 years ago tonight (December 29th, 1979) that Paul McCartney & Wings gave their final live performance. McCartney, who had formed the band in 1971, had seen the group go through several incarnations — running through three guitarists and four drummers in only seven years. The main nucleus of the band, McCartney, wife Linda and Denny Laine, were the group's only constant members. The final 1979 line-up featured guitarist Laurence Juber and drummer Steve Holley.
Their final show, which was the closing spot on the three-night Concerts For The People Of Kampuchea UNICEF benefits at London's Hammersmith Odeon, featured Wings' normal two hour set, before being joined by the Who's Pete Townshend and Kenny Jones, Led Zeppelin's Robert Plant, John Bonham and John Paul Jones, along with Ronnie Lane, James Honeyman-Scott of the Pretenders, Bruce Thomas of the Attractions, Procol Harum's Gary Brooker, and Dave Edmunds, for a three-song “Rockestra” performance.
The mini-set, which featured all the musicians in gold lame tails and top hats, included nearly 40 players tearing through Little Richard's “Lucille,” the Beatles' “Let It Be,” and two run-throughs of McCartney's “Rockestra Theme,” which was released earlier that year, featuring many of the same musicians, on Wings' Back To The Egg album. The tune went on to snag the Grammy for that year's Best Rock Instrumental Performance.