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Anxious fans tonight kept vigil outside a Tokyo hospital  as Sir Paul McCartney battled a serious viral infection. Macca, 72 next month, was admitted after his recent symptoms failed to improve.

He was hit by the mystery bug on May 16 – the day after he landed in the Japanese capital. His world tour gigs on May 18 and 19 were postponed as doctors ordered “complete rest” in his  hotel room while he recuperated. The Beatles legend, who had tests for a “minor heart irregularity” in 2007, had hoped to return for the third and final Tokyo show on Wednesday. But that too was axed as he was taken to hospital on Tuesday amid growing fears over his health.Now organisers have also cancelled a scheduled concert in Osaka tomorrow and a first show in South Korea capital Seoul next Wednesday. Vegetarian Sir Paul, who also practices yoga and meditation, is being treated at Tokyo’s St Luke’s International Hospital, with third wife Nancy, 53, at his bedside. One fan outside said: “I was surprised when I first heard a details

It was 50 years ago in June that Sgt Pepper taught the band to play. And to celebrate, hundreds of New Zealand musicians are teaming up to bring Beatlemania back to Auckland.

The Play It Strange Trust is uniting 150 musicians for two nights of music to mark the 50th anniversary of The Beatles' two Auckland Town Hall shows on June 24 and 25. Each night's performance will have a different line-up. Among those performing on June 24 are Don McGlashan, SJD and Tim Finn, with Peter Urlich, Jason Kerrison and Jordan Luck among those taking to the stage on the second night. And though there were swarms of teenagers screaming at the Fab Four 50 years ago, this time hundreds of schoolchildren will join the musicians on stage, performing Beatles songs they have been rehearsing in the lead-up to the shows. Thankfully, it seems John, Paul, George and Ringo haven't been lost among the Biebers and Mileys that dominate the charts today. Play It Strange CEO Mike Chunn says when one student was asked if she knew any Beatles songs, she replied that she knew ever details

NEIL Innes is convinced that too many people involved in the music business are far too serious. And for more than 40 years he’s been on a mission to bring some fun back, both as a solo artist and with the likes of the Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band and The Rutles, who come to Clitheroe’s Grand Theatre next week.

“Oh, musicians can be way too serious,” he said. “People are all individuals and need to find themselves and what works for them. “The music industry treats the music-buying public as a mob, happy to accept what’s thrown at them without questioning. “I’m afraid I’ve never been able to accept that concept. For a start, there’s no room for silliness.” The Rutles have become a cult, beloved by music and comedy fans alike. The original idea was for a sketch on Rutland Weekend Television, a TV series in the mid 1970s featuring Monty Python’s Eric Idle. Neil had the idea for a spoof of The Beatles’ Hard Day’s Night, which became a five minute sketch on the show.

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Paul McCartney is on the mend, his spokeswoman says. A virus infection forced the former Beatle to cancel his Japan tour and South Korea concert. TheSankei Sports newspaper reports that McCartney, 71, was admitted to a hospital when the infection worsened.

"Paul received successful medical treatment at a hospital in Tokyo," McCartney spokeswoman Perri Cohen told USA TODAY in a statement. "He will make a complete recovery and has been ordered to take a few days rest. Paul has been extremely moved by all the messages and well wishes he has received from fans all over the world." She declined to say whether he remained hospitalized. McCartney's Out There tour is scheduled to resume June 14 in  details

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — Paul McCartney has canceled his concert in South Korea next week due to the virus-caused illness that forced him to call off his entire Japan tour, organizers said Wednesday. The former Beatle, who turns 72 next month, had planned to hold concerts in Japan and South Korea as part of his world tour.
"I was really looking forward to visiting and playing in South Korea for the first .time and I'm sorry to be letting fans down," McCartney was quoted as saying in a statement released by Seoul-based Hyundai Card Co. Ltd., an organizer for his South Korea concert. "I'm very disappointed by this and hope to be able to visit soon." The statement said that "Paul is still not feeling better and this cancellation is unavoidable." Organizers said McCartney's side didn't give them details about his illness. Hyundai Card officials said they would offer a refund on the tickets, which range from about $55 to $290. McCartney was scheduled to perform at a Seoul stadium on May 28. It would have been his first concert in South Korea. His ill details

She was the impetus for two of rock music’s most identifiable love songs in the Beatles‘ ‘Something‘ and Derek and the Dominoes‘ ‘Layla.’ Pattie Boyd was also the catalyst for the first Beatles concert reunion.

On May 19, 1979, Boyd — ex-wife of George Harrison — married the former Beatle’s best friend Eric Clapton at his English estate. Harrison brought along Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr for what turned into an epic, though apparently musically questionable, wedding reception jam. Also there on an outdoor stage at Clapton’s English estate (in the same garden, by the way, where Harrison wrote ‘Here Comes the Sun’) was the Rolling Stones‘ Mick Jagger and Bill Wyman, Elton John, David Bowie, members of Clapton’s band Cream and Denny Laine, from McCartney’s ’70s-era band Wings. Boyd, an ex-model who’d appeared on the cover of Vogue, was married to Harrison from 1966-77 & details

The walk to freedom for Sunder, a 13-year-old elephant who has been in captivity, could be delayed further. MLA Vinay Kore, who has been resisting Sunder's release, has now filed an appeal against it in the Supreme Court. 

The Bombay High Court had on April 7 ordered authorities to implement a state government order, issued in August 2012, to release Sunder into the wild. The People for Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) has been fighting to secure the pachyderm's release and had moved the Bombay High Court as the state government's order to release him had not been implemented. Sunder who has been in captivity and was kept chained inside a dark shed at a Temple in the Kolhapur district of Maharashtra for seven years would have been finally free from the torture. PETA India's Director of Veterinary Affairs Dr Manilal Valliyate told NDTV, "This is an attempt from MLA Vinay Kore to delay the process of implementing the High Court order. All the paperwork from moving Sunder to a sanctuary in Bangalore details

TOKYO (AP) — The bug Paul McCartney caught last week has squashed the final dates of his Japan tour. His reps say the singer isn't well enough to do any of the remaining shows in Japan — because his doctor has ordered him to take complete rest. The canceled shows in Japan include one that had been set for tomorrow at Nippon Budokan hall.
That's a key one because it's where the Beatles performed during their first tour of Japan in 1966. The illness caused McCartney to scrub two weekend concerts in Tokyo, a makeup show set for yesterday and another in Osaka this past Saturday. Japanese are among the world's biggest fans of Western pop music — and some fans traveled from out of town for the McCartney shows.
 

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An electric guitar played by The Beatles' George Harrison has sold for almost £400,000  at an auction in New York. The former Beatle played the 1962 Rickenbacker 425 guitar on British TV shows like Ready  Steady Go! in 1963, prior to the band's US invasion in 1964.

Harrison, who died in 2001 aged 58, also used the instrument during the recording of I Want  to Hold Your Hand and This Boy. The guitar’s pre-sale estimate was up to $600,000 (£356,000) said auction house Julien's but  it eventually sold for $657,000 (£390,641) The sale topped the previous sale of a VOX guitar played by both Harrison and Lennon in May  last year which fetched £269,000 but fell far short of the record $965,000 (£591,000) set by a Bob  Dylan guitar in December. Harrison bought the guitar in 1963 in Mount Vernon, Illinois, while visiting his sister in the United  States. The auction also saw the sale of a placard covered in doodles and signed by John Lennon and  Yoko Ono, from their ‘bed-in’ protest, details

Tokyo National Stadium shows to be postponed 18th & 19th May Doctors have ordered Paul complete rest and he has been doing all he can to get better. Paul has only ever had to reschedule a handful of shows in his entire career and is so upset about this situation, he hates to let people down.

This morning he told his staff he was going to try and perform tonight against doctors orders, but his team, along with the doctors, wouldn't allow it. He has been very moved by the fan's reactions and messages of love and support he has received in Japan. Paul has instructed his team to look at rescheduling options. Message from Paul: "Thank you so much for your kind messages of support. I’m so very touched. Unfortunately my condition has not improved overnight. I was really hoping that I'd be feeling better today. I'm so disappointed and sorry to be letting my fans down. Love, Paul"

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Beatles Radio Listener Poll
If the Dead can do a farewell show without Jerry can Paul & Ringo without John & George?