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Super Bowl XXXIX was an American football game between the American Football Conference (AFC) champion New England Patriots and the National Football Conference (NFC) champion Philadelphia Eagles to decide the National Football League (NFL) champion for the 2004 season. The Patriots defeated the Eagles by the score of 24–21. The game was played on February 6, 2005, at Alltel Stadium in Jacksonville, Florida, the first time the Super Bowl was played in that city. […]
Paul McCartney performed during the halftime show; his selection by the NFL, the show’s producers, Don Mischer Productions, and the show’s sponsor, Ameriquest Mortgage, was considered to be a “safe” choice, as it avoided the possibility for an incident similar to that which sparked the Super Bowl XXXVIII halftime show controversy the previous year. […]
On Sunday 6th February Paul and his band rocked their way through an explosive four-song set at the 2005 Super Bowl halftime show, performing the classics Drive My Car, Get Back, Live And Let Die and Hey Jude. This was Paul’s second Super Bowl appearance, following a memorable pre-game performance at Super Bowl XXXVI in New Orleans in 2002, the first Super Bowl after the tragic events of September 11th. Watched by a record 144.4 million viewers in the US, the Super Bowl is the nation’s highest-rated TV programme annually and the most-watched single-day sporting event. Paul’s performance was broadcast in more than 200 countries worldwide.
Paul McCartney made the announcement of the new “US” tour during the NFL Super Bowl XXXIX Halftime Show. The full details of the tour are published on April 18, 2005.
From paulmccartney.com, February 18, 2005:
THE SUPERBOWL DIARY… – 18.02.2005
Here as promised is Paul Freundlich’s (Paul’s US publicist) Superbowl Diary.
1:49AM, Thursday, February 4th. I’ve just ducked out of the 8th Floor meeting room at The Ritz-Carlton on Amelia Island to begin the homework assignment’ that I’ve received unexpectedly about 45 minutes ago over tofu with Paul. A diary has been requested, for no particular reason mind you, to highlight our moments leading up to Superbowl XXXIX between the heavily favored New England Patriots and Philadelphia Eagles. It’s to be written as I would write a letter to my wife.’ And so, with the television blaring some meaningless junk (what should I expect at 2:00 in the morning) I’ve quickly gotten out my computer to write down some thoughts for fear that my memory will fail some of the moments, the names, the events and details that have already moved into the past.
Monday, January 31st.
8:00AM. Work begins with a barrage of phone calls from NFL, FOX and NFL Network representatives, not to mention the members of the media from across the country wondering when, where, how or if they’ll get some b-roll of rehearsal, photos or even their shot at the title interviewing Paul. They prod, push and demand but the reality is that I really have no idea what, if anything, that Paul will want to do in regard to the media as he hasn’t arrived yet and I haven’t had the opportunity to speak with him. The line remains the same as it has for the past few weeks, prior to arriving in Jacksonville, and I do my best tap-dancing to ensure that I can be prepared given any scenario.
12:05PM. Just arrived at the stadium after an hour spent driving in a white van with other members of the team, Bill Bernstein, our tour photographer, Mark Haefeli, whose shooting a making of’ for the NFL Network, Robby Montgomery, who’s more or less worked for the past few months putting this gig together with Barrie Marshall, the tour director (even though we’re not on tour) and Brian, the driver. Most of the ride’ is spent at a security checkpoint where all of us are asked to leave our vehicle for the pat-down and wand waving, sign-in and credential check, while our van, along with 4 or 5 other cars is screened by a giant military x-ray machine. I’ve never seen anything like this before. A large truck, which has an arm’ that extends above and over each vehicle, moves along at about 1 or 2 miles per hour, produces an x-ray print out which I’m sure reveals any weapons of mass destruction that might be concealed. None found.
12:10PM. The rehearsal area or compound as it’s been affectionately dubbed, is situated on a practice field outside the Alltell Stadium. Damn it’s cold outside. This is Florida? One very large tent houses the stage and hundreds of people are running around working, building, moving lights and enormous video screens into place. I’ve been told that our guys have literally been working for months to put the staging together. Coop, Scottie, Springo and Pab tell me it’s taken nearly 10 days just to put the 18 MILES of cable, 650 moving lights and all the gear into place, not to mention the sound system which will release nearly 500,000 watts of sound. It’s good to see them again, not only are they great people, but they’re the best at what they do.
3:00PM. I’ve managed to corral our team, John Hammel, Barrie Marshall, Charles Bayfield, our newly appointed head of security, Robby Montgomery (Mark Haefeli and his crew of Craig Braden and Bill Shackleton in tow) for a visit to the media center. Paul will be giving a press conference and there is much to be done. I figure good to have everyone on hand so that there are no surprises and everyone is in the loop. Phil, our tour manager, puts us into a couple of vehicles and we’re on our way. We meet with Brian McCarthy from the NFL and his team of NFLites. We start from where Paul will enter. Who will be in this area? Are you putting barricades down? How many security people will be on hand? Will they be uniformed, etc. Moving right along, we’re shown a green room for Paul. We ask about catering, pipe and drape to curtain off a makeup area, lighting, a mirror, etc. They show us an interview room that we’ve requested (just in case) and we map out possible routes to the bathroom as well as to the press conference room. This place, the media center, is buzzing. There is media everywhere. There are live broadcasts going on and television and radio crews all over the place interviewing football know-it-alls. The press conference room is huge. We’re thinking about 350 will be on hand. We discuss placement of the media. We argue a bit over the placement of the photographers (we get what we want) and television crews, we discuss where the barricades and security will be placed, where Paul will be, the minute by minute details of the actual press conference as well as where and on what Paul will sit (or stand), the microphone, the signage, the content, the questions, the water, the placement of football helmets and more. After about 2 hours we leave to return to our compound. No doubt that we’ll be returning to double-check.
5:00PM. Barrie, Charles, John and I move right along (with Haefeli crew in tow) to the stadium. Walking out onto the field is quite a site. Crews are busy at work on the field and the paint isn’t yet dry from the insignia’s being placed on the field for the game. Wow, it’s cold out here. Anyway, we meet to map out Paul’s entrance (and exit), where media will be placed during the game, to find out where the broadcast crew will be situated (I’m thinking that Paul might want to interview with Terry Bradshaw again) and to see the corporate box where Paul will be during the game. Everything seems in order and about an hour later we return to our compound knowing that this won’t be the last time that we meet with these folks.
6:00PM. The work continues back at the compound as darkness falls. The cell phones ring like mad, the computers are still out and there are hundreds running around like mice. They’re moving the stage components out from the tent to a practice field situated nearby. Ultimately, there will be 600 stagehands that will be responsible for setting up and breaking down the stage in just 6 minutes. Very glad I’m not one of them.
It’s been a long day, with everyone preparing for Paul’s arrival tomorrow. As for the band, Wix has already completed his journey to Jacksonville and the rest of them Brian, Rusty and Abe are due in late tonight. The logistics, planning and details are staggering for an appearance like this. Somewhere the lawyers are probably still squabbling and men in suits are arguing over what will and won’t be allowed. We don’t care about that down in the trenches, unless it would adversely affect Paul in some way. In any case, I’m certain that everyone is crossing their t’s and dotting their i’s. Everything must be perfect for the show. I know that I for one am hoping that a mistake doesn’t park itself somewhere on our road to perfection. We take the 45-minute ride back to the hotel and grab a bite to eat. Haven’t had anything since breakfast. Tomorrow Paul arrives for his first day of rehearsals.
Tuesday, February 1st.
10:00am. Took a run, ate breakfast and now I’m back on the van with my comrades on our way to the compound for rehearsal. The phones haven’t stopped ringing, the preparations have continued, Barrie and his crew have worked through the night. But today is the day. I saw Paul a few weeks ago, but many haven’t seen or spoken to him in quite some time not even John Hammel from what he tells me. Will he, won’t he, can he, should he who knows. Perhaps we’ll have answers to all, some or none of our questions, but regardless the team is top notch and everyone is as prepared as can be.
11:15. Here we are again. We’ve arrived at the security Checkpoint Charlie. Did I mention that we have to leave the vehicles while they scan them with darth-x-rayer. Damn it’s cold out here. I will say this though watching Robby go through a security checkpoint is all that one needs to defuse the tension that is bubbling under all of us. He has so much junk, loose change and things that go beep from the pass of the security wand that he’s unloading the stuff in the middle of the roadway. Priceless.
11:25. We get ourselves situated in our office, plug ourselves into civilization, while organized chaos surrounds. We check the scores of emails and return the calls that were missed moving around the sporadic cell phone coverage that seems to be the norm in Jacksonville. They are sure to be there for all of us in all of our respective areas. After all, as we prepare for an event that is to be seen by 144.4 million in the US alone, there is an agenda that surrounds an A&E DVD, Fall tour and album to mention a few. Sleep is for the dead and rest is for the weary. I walk outside after a bit to witness the hundreds who continue, in what is now sure to be 30 degree Floridian weather, to move the stage practicing for their 6 minutes of fame. They seem to take great pride in their work. I’m certain that one day their grandchildren will be telling their children how they were part of this performance.
12:30. Word that Paul’s arrival is within an hour filters through the compound. His estimated time of arrival is growing close. I for one begin to gather my thoughts, as I know that we all do, so that we can keep our questions and comments direct and to the point. There is little time for much else. The new stylist, the seamstress, the publicist, the tour director, the project manager, the video crew, the tour manager, the production manager not to mention the producers will no doubt all want something. And then of course there’s the valuable time that slips into oblivion for some unknown reason.
1:45. Paul arrives behind his police escort. Never have seen one like the one that we had following Superbowl XXXVI in New Orleans, where this football thing all started. He pops out to what no doubt by now are the familiar faces of the team many of whom have greeted him in the rain, the snow, the sunshine, the good times and the bad. Hugs for all. Great to see you. To the trailer. Time to get to work. Mike, John, Barrie, Robby and I bound up the stairs to Paul’s trailer to go over the business at hand. Haefeli and Bernstein enter gracefully to document. Paul establishes that he wants to go through wardrobe before rehearsal. I’m told, no interviews, but ask if he’ll answer some questions with Haefeli’s crew. He agrees and then requests a word with Barrie, we leave and stand by outside as Paul turns his trailer into the House O Style.
2:30. With wardrobe plans in motion and seemingly squared away for the time being, Paul makes his way from his trailer to the stage inside the tent in our compound. He stops along the way for a hug here and a handshake there for those familiar to the process. Like all, or 99% of the gigs that I’ve been part of, he kicks off the rehearsal with the familiar bars of Coming Up. I can hear the producers thinking, funny, that’s not in the script. It was nice though. You could see that nothing had changed for the band since the last gig, except for the mud and spontaneity of Glastonbury.
5:45. The rehearsal ends. Paul has requested a meeting in his trailer and Don Mischer, the show’s producer/director has video of the roughly 13-minute performance to show to Paul. We all pile into the trailer, vital crew-members, Roy Bennett and the team,’ as Paul takes a seat atop a coffee table directly in front of the flat-screened television. A young runner, a girl, has been dispatched to the trailer to work the machine, which she does better then all assembled. Don goes through his list of disclaimers, reasons for black screens and bars along the bottom of the frame and finally lets all view. Drive My Car, to Get Back, to Live And Let Die and finally Hey Jude make for a great set. Paul and Don have a quiet exchange, which I barely hear. Adjust a camera angle here and correct a shot there and it appears as though Paul, Don, etc. know that there is much work to be done. All vacate the trailer as Robby requests 1 minute more of Paul’s time to view and approve two trailers that no doubt Ameriquest, NFL, FOX and NFL Network have fought over. Paul agrees and while Robby dexterously pulls out his already connected Apple laptop to load up the videos, Bernstein jumps in so that Paul can see and approve some photos to hold and/or to release to the media. That’s good, not really, that’s cool. Lets go with that one. We all concur, Bill’s done his job for the day and I have something new to play with for press. Robby’s ready. But wait. Bill and Paul are now planning a photo shoot for Thursday. Would be great to get some new photos for the tour in the Fall. Bill now has his mission, a brief photo shoot to be done on a trailer? Will have to do. Right then, let’s have a look at those videos. Paul moves over to the Apple on the table, that’s a computer of course, and he watches intently. He nods, smiles and asks what these promos are for. Robby answers knowledgeably and Paul approves them.
Paul departs at about 6:30, says his good-byes and the work continues. Bill begins planning with Springo and Barrie as to how to convert a trailer to a photo studio and I alert the NFL, The Associated Press and the local papers that we have a photo to release. I also request a meeting with Scott Ackerman, the executive vice president of FOX in charge of the pre-show for a possible Bradshaw/McCartney interview. About an hour later, Bill has squared away all that he can for the night for his photo shoot and we leave the compound at roughly 7:30/8:00. Robby remains with Barrie as there are apparently still some hotly contested issues that are still being banged out between our camp and the NFL. Barrie also needs to dispatch a special team of engineers who will come in first thing in the morning to ensure that the bathroom in Paul’s trailer is working properly. It wasn’t. A day’s work is never done.
Wednesday, February 2rd.
10:45AM. We arrive on the compound for another day. I’ve spent much of the morning letting all those that have been calling me for the past few weeks know that Paul will not be conducting interviews. There’s a lot going on, but first and foremost I call Scott Ackerman, to have him come over to our compound to sit with Robby, Barrie and I to discuss the possible Bradshaw/McCartney showdown. We ask the usual questions. Who’s on throughout the show, what’s the timeframe that we’d have, where each host (there are four) would be seated, time that we’d need to be on hand, proximity to Paul’s box, whether we could have a holding room for powder, interview content, location, etc. Scott seems amenable not only to making it all work, but to Haefeli’s cameras which have appeared to film the meeting. After about an hour, I let them know that we’ll get back to him after we’ve presented the opportunity to Paul. He leaves and then realizes that he should ask Mark not to use comments that he had made regarding the Secret Service. President’s Clinton and Bush41 will be appearing on the Pre-Show just prior to Paul, if he agrees.
11:00AM. I receive a call from John Eastman regarding a painting that Paul has bought. He tells me that Paul wants me to arrange for him to give this painting to the fire department. In an effort to have information ready for Paul regarding this matter I burn the phones and find that the Uniformed Firefighters Association, which represents the 5000plus of the rank and file of the New York City Fire Department seems the best choice. I present the concept and await their call back at some point in the next 24 hours. Recognizable faces are pacing back and forth on cell phones outside the trailers, bundled up in clothing to keep warm, dealing with their issues of the moment. The crews are rushing about making preparations for rehearsals: Day Two.
12:00NOON. I see online that there is a plane-crash back home a small New Jersey airport, Teterboro, where I would think Paul would depart New York for Jacksonville. Sure enough, Paul’s arrival is to be delayed and it seems as though 2:00pm is more likely. There is more time to prepare, but less time for rehearsal. Not good. The weather is terrible, very cold.
2:15PM. Paul arrives. Kiss to Phil Kaz. Greetings to all. Let’s get to the trailer. Paul once again reviews his clothing undecided on what to wear, and I enter to discuss the information I’ve just gotten regarding the New York City Fire Department. All seems okay and I tell him that I’ll have more information within 24 hours. I ask several questions regarding the press conference, but sense that time is tight so I wait on the Bradshaw interview and leave. Paul remains on the trailer for a short time and then heads to rehearsal.
3:30PM. Once Paul is settled into rehearsal Barrie and I depart for the media center for another advance of the press conference. They’ve promised that they’ll have the rooms open and that the set-up will be underway so it will be easier to make changes (or not). Once again we walk Paul’s walk and go through each and every detail. Things appear to be in place except for a few minor details concerning the setup of the press conference room itself. We’re stopped by several reporters all requesting one on one interviews for the following day and after about 3 conversations, which take far too long given the timeframe that we are on, we discover that it’s easier to give hope then to step on the possibility. On our way out, Barrie is stopped by Jim Steeg the outgoing special events coordinator for the NFL. They discuss something about Hooters, an American franchised eatery famous for, well you get the idea, and after checking the watch we realize unless we leave at that moment we will be late for Paul’s departure.
5:30PM. The light drizzle that started earlier in the day has stopped. We get into our van only to find that Jacksonville’s urban planners must have lied to the Superbowl host committee about their ability to deal with traffic. We get out of the van and run. We don’t want to miss Paul before he leaves. We arrive on foot in time to see everyone piling into the television truck presumably to watch the results of the day’s work. Paul and Don sit side by side and discuss camera angles, camera switches, lighting and clothing color. The band, the team and other members of Don’s staff stand by, watch and listen. After about 30 minutes, Paul and Don go over tomorrow’s schedule (the final day of rehearsal). It’s to consist of 3 run-throughs and a real-time dress rehearsal inside the stadium. Pyrotechnics will operate at 30-50% capacity and the fans’ will be brought in to surround the 360-degree stage. The day is now done, everyone leaves the truck and a few last minute conversations take place. It has begun to rain again.
6:15PM. Paul does his best Fred Astaire and plays around with Robby under his umbrella. He gives Robby (and me) another thought concerning his wardrobe and then gives him the umbrella and leaves.
Our day continues in the wardrobe trailer. Robby, Barrie and I discuss what Paul has requested, while Haefeli rolls tape. Robby has his cell phone to one ear quietly listening for the outcome of a clearance issue, while Barrie’s cell phone is in his other ear awaiting a conversation with the newly appointed stylist. She’s in New York City. Clearance issue settled, Robby gives HIS phone to Barrie who begins to put the wheels in motion for the stylist’s transportation back to Florida. I find a couch and sit. Haefeli looks over at me and laughs and proclaims this as his best comedy scene yet for his making of film. I realize that he’s caught me rubbing my brow in a moment of complete exhaustion. Wardrobe matter closed, Barrie returns to his trailer to solidify plans with Springo for Paul’s photo shoot with Bernstein and Robby and I depart for the night. An array of colored lettering, felt and various sweatshirts are to arrive in the morning for the aforementioned wardrobe concept. Paul will ultimately decide against it.
Thursday, February 3rd.
11:00AM. I depart from the hotel with Robby. There is much to do in preparation for Paul’s press conference today. We’ll be there early to run through all the last minute details, to make any changes necessary to the set-up and we’ll have time (I think) for any last minute disasters that could need fixing. You never know.
12:15PM. Robby and I arrive at the media center and move into action. Another walk-through. Entrance to the building is secure and looks good. Paul’s green room is definitely not ready. Robby and I move some furniture around, I demand pipe and drape to separate his makeup area and I haven’t seen a mirror for the makeup area just yet. Patience is wearing thin and as time moves along, so do I to the press conference room. Some press has already gathered. I notice some cardboard on chairs towards the front and realize that some photographers have staked out their space. Not what we discussed. I tell the NFL representatives, security and press, no photographers in chairs they’re to be in the back. Period. No exceptions, except for Bernstein, who I point out to their head of security. I discuss placement of some stanchions, no big deal, and return to Paul’s holding room to see if our mirror and pipe and drape have arrived. Pipe and drape is not there yet and as time moves along I suggest taking some existing pipe and drape in the hall and moving into Paul’s room they concur and it’s done. Where’s the mirror? I figure out that telling them 6 times that we need one isn’t enough. The NFL decides to take matters into their own hands. Their security team will rip a mirror from the bathroom wall and 10 minutes later there is a massive mirror with the black glue still attached at the back moved into place in Paul’s dressing room. Another classic manoeuvre I think.
1:00PM. I call Haefeli and Charles to check on Paul’s arrival status. They’re waiting at the airport. He’s to land at 1:50, which means a 2:00 2:15 arrival is assured with his police escort. I tell them to let John Hammel know that there is a mirror in place (without the details of the story of how) and ask them to buzz me when they roll. I inform the NFL reps that 2:30 should be our rough start time. That will give Paul time for powder, bathroom (if necessary) and for a quick briefing.
1:10PM. I check the interview room that by now has been set up by our boys Braden and Shackleton. I’m not really worried about this one as I figure they’ve shot interviews with Paul at least a dozen times. True to form, they tell me that they’re all set.
1:15PM. I’m not happy with the crowds that are forming out near our corridor’. Paul’s dressing room, interview room, etc. is all in one hall off the main stretch of radio networks conducting interviews and John Hammel and I had clocked this days earlier. I inform security that at 1:30 I want more stanchions and men in place so that I can see a secure area prior to Paul’s arrival. I return to the press conference room.
1:25PM. Everything seems in order in the conference room now. The room is filling fast a good thing and I place some water on Paul’s desk where he’ll be sitting for the conference itself. The photographers begin to congregate in their designated area and the television crews begin to set up. The locals and NFL Network will be carrying the conference live. I inform Brian McCarthy, the conference’s MC, that we’re going to make an announcement at roughly 1:45 informing all media in attendance of the ground rules. We’ll also make it clear that there are to be no photographers in front of the barricades in the back of the house. We’ll meet back in the conference room in 20.
1:30PM. Time for all the last minute requests that seemingly take up minutes we don’t have, that are not planned for and can throw everything into total chaos. This is where life becomes difficult. The several items that Paul has agreed to sign have now become bountiful. I notice that some items have come in that were not discussed, including some leather footballs. I politely remind the NFL of what we did agree to sign and they’re removed shortly after. Ameriquest reps are now asking for a brief meeting. Apparently, I’m informed that this is already slated? I tell them no autographs (don’t have the time), no cameras (Bill can take the pic) and I’ll give them the word when and if I can make it happen. They have no choice but to agree. Next I hear it’s the mayor. Well, I guess it is his town. We’ll see what we can do and I promise nothing reminding his reps that we’re on a very tight schedule. Afterall, it’s my mission to deliver a seamless event for Paul and to return him to rehearsal on time I cannot forget that the music is what has brought us here and it is what we are truly here for.
1:52PM. My phone rings. I know who this will be. Paul’s on the ground and arrival is 10-15 minutes away.
1:53PM. I inform security and our team to get into place and I move into the conference room, which is now absolutely wall to wall people, to make the announcement concerning content, photographers and timing. Brian McCarthy stays to the script. No personal questions and photographers must stay within their designated area in the back.
I’m feeling okay.
1:59PM. I make my way to the back entrance and await Paul’s arrival.
2:08PM. Sirens blare. Paul’s close. He arrives and asks how much time we have. I inform him 20 minutes. He seems okay with that. He’s in good spirits from his journey as he opens his fly to show us the Lucky You’ logo embroidered in his jeans crotch. He jokes that this is to be his wardrobe malfunction. He knows that the Janet Jackson debacle of SuperBowl XXXVIII is front and center in the minds of those in attendance today. A good thing from a content perspective he’ll joke about it.
2:10PM. I introduce him to his make-up artist Paulette, he moves over to the table of merchandise, and signs everything in front of him it is somewhat excessive. I’m sure somewhere some NFL exec is breathing a heavy sigh of relief. But it is to be for charity.
2:15PM. Into makeup. My opportunity comes to brief him on what will happen today.
2:17PM. John Hammel informs me of a concern regarding sound. He says that he’s spoken to Brian McCarthy of the NFL, who he’s met days earlier, and I tell him that I’ll reinforce the request before we enter the room.
2:20PM. Paul completes makeup. I ask if he’ll meet with the small Ameriquest contingent and he agrees. It’s what we’re here for.
2:22PM. I signal for the Ameriquest people to come OH SHIT Here come 20 people, Robby told me that Paul had agreed to 10 and there are the proverbial guitar cases, LPs, CD’s, shirts, photos and whatever else will hold the ink from a Sharpie. I stop them firmly and remind the NFLites of my requests earlier. All the merch’ is dropped and I wing it with everyone in tow what else can I do? Paul is as gracious as usual, he shakes everyone’s hand (I grab an errant magazine and photo from one that has slipped away which I return after the meet and greet is over), we take the photo and escort them out.
2:24PM. Paul agrees to meet the mayor, picture is taken, and he, in a moment of great comedy, shows him his wardrobe malfunction that he’s shown us earlier. He’s respectfully asked the ladies to leave the room beforehand. Classic moment.
2:27PM. I inform Charles that we’re ready to move and we go. The corridor that I’m concerned about going through is clear, even though Paul mentions jokingly that he feels like a boxer heading to the ring.
2:30PM. Paul’s in place. I hand him a football thinking that it could be good to have in his hands for the photo op. He takes it. First there is the Ameriquest speech. Two minutes seems very long or the suit seizes the opportunity to capture his 15 minutes of fame. He’s seated and then Don Mischer sticks to the script (as always) with 2 minutes during which he’s waxing poetic about the accomplishments of our guy and the honor that he’s had over the preceding days. I alert Paul to get ready.
2:40PM. Paul bounces out on stage. The room is massively packed with media. I stand by, listening intently for that personal question. John Hammel, standing next to me notices a professional photographer in the seats. We notify the NFL’s chief of security, who politely walks over and moves him. The conference moves along, seemingly well. Billy Bush of Access Hollywood asks the question that we want out there. The tour, the album, are plugged, great.
2:50PM. I give the signal. Two more questions. McCarthy, the MC, nods to me in acknowledgement. The conference concludes with Paul standing being his table, he finally lifts the football that I had given him earlier and throws it out into the crowd of media that have assembled. Great moment.
2:55PM. We retire to our one on one room where Haefeli is set-up. I take a seat nearby to take notes and after John Hammel’s revisions to the setup (he thinks it should look better), Paul and Mark chat about the upcoming tour as well as this weekend’s events.
3:00PM. Paul returns to his green room to change. Signs a few autographs on the way out, waves to some onlookers, gets into his limo and leaves for rehearsal.
3:01PM. A woman standing nearby begins balling loudly. He didn’t sign it! He didn’t sign it! She is inconsolable. Robby and I tell Bernstein and Braden to shoot it. Really is just one of those moments that you cannot recreate that exemplifies the connection between Paul, his music and the hearts of millions all over the world.
3:45PM. I thank all that have helped to make the event happen. They are very pleased. They tell me that it is by far the largest press conference to ever take place during the Superbowl including the one given by BOTH coaches. The media will in fact pick up on that fact for the morning’s papers and stories run around the world. 1500 pack McCartney press conference. McCartney, better draw than coaches. Great.
3:50PM. Robby and I enter the white van that we’ve traveled around on all week to return to the rehearsal sight.
4:10PM. We arrive back at the compound. Paul is getting a massage in his trailer, after which he’ll spend roughly 30 minutes with Bernstein taking photographs, which we all hope will be for the tour ad mats.
5:00PM. I walk into Paul’s trailer where he’s now completed a massage and is preparing for his photo shoot. I give him the latest news on the New York City Firefighters matter and inform him that the NFL is pleased with the conference.
5:10PM. Bill Bernstein begins a photo shoot in the main cabin of a trailer. It is truly amazing. He has brought in an assistant, a white backdrop, props and lighting with the help of Barrie, Springo, Phil and others. Not a small task considering that the photo shoot was called 24 hours before, that security needed to clear equipment (which needed to be secured) and an additional person. Paul’s trailer is converted into a makeshift photography studio, but more importantly it will need to revert to a greenroom immediately following. We do after all, have 600 stagehands on hand shouldn’t be too difficult.
5:40PM. They emerge and the buzz is that they’ve got the shots. Good news.
5:50PM. Many of us begin our walk to the stadium now. We’re done rehearsing on the compound and dress rehearsal will take place in what is now a very soggy stadium. It’s been raining most of the day and there is some question as to whether or not the weather will effect the rehearsal. Umbrellas are constructed on stage for Paul, grounds crews bring in massive sheeting to cover the field, while Toro blowers attempt to shift the water from the field to the sidelines. 3500 people await Paul’s arrival at the stadium for rehearsal. They’re to be the on field audience. They seem young to me at first glance.
6:15PM. Paul leaves the compound, along with the band, for the drive to the stadium.
6:40PM. Two run-throughs of the show begin in a light rain. Now it’s cold AND rainy. Paul and the band break into a jam, welcome to the Superbowl, and the 3500 begin to dance unscripted. Feels like we’re back on tour. I begin to scan the crowd for unauthorized video cameras as I instinctually do.
6:50PM. Run-through begins. I clock a guy filming with a handheld Hi8. The tape is Paul’s now. I take it. Standing with David Saltz, an NFL representative, and Robby I turn and notice another Hi8 shooter. The same guy! He came prepared. I confiscate a second tape for Paul, which I’ll later turn into security (protocol) and I have the uncooperative gentleman escorted out of the venue even though he’s been granted access and a pass as an employee of Mischer Productions. So much for security clearances.
7:00PM. I go to the FOX truck to see what it looks like on TV. There I find Robby speaking with representatives of the NFL. There is major legal issue that has apparently just popped up I walk away. Don’t want to know, but I offer Robby my assistance if needed. Truth is that I have enough on my plate. I enter the truck to view the rehearsal. I see David Hill, the head of FOX Sports. He’s pleased to have heard that Paul will reprise his interview with Terry Bradshaw. I remind him that this is not yet 100% confirmed. The tapes of rehearsal roll. I’m certain that opinions are developed privately, (mine is) but in the end all that matters to us is Paul’s.
8:15PM. Full run-through begins, sans the fireworks (the 30-50% that Don had mentioned earlier) and the aerial shots that will be broadcast from a helicopter overhead on Superbowl Sunday.
8:45PM. Paul and band, team McCartney and Mischer deposit themselves inside a broadcast truck clearly too small to accommodate everyone. I leave to head back to the compound, in the hope that I’ll be able to get two last questions answered before Paul calls it a day.
10:15PM. Paul and band return to the compound as expected and I enter his trailer. He’s speaking with Mike Walley and John Hammel getting ready to depart for our hotel. There’s a party there for Wix’s wife Margo. I hop into the trailer and receive final permission to officially confirm the Bradshaw interview. Mission accomplished. Almost.
11:15PM. We all depart for the hotel.
12:30AM. It’s now Friday. Check the time. I put my bag into my room and seriously contemplate whether I want to attend the evening’s festivities.’ I go realizing that tomorrow, or is it already tomorrow, is another day and it would be rude not to go as it’s Margo’s birthday.
12:45AM. I enter the party and deposit myself in conversation with Abe, Paul’s drummer and Haefeli. The mood is good. Everyone has arrived ahead of me and they seem to be enjoying the close to their evening. This includes Paul. I grab a very small plate of polenta, tofu squares and crisps, a bottle of water and sit at a table with Haefeli and Robby in a corner. The conversation is polite and non-work related.
12:55AM. Paul passes our table seemingly on his way to the bathroom. Haefeli comments that he’ll be over to us when he returns. He’s right. Robby takes the opportunity to vacate his seat to go look at the dessert table. Paul returns to take his seat. The conversation, mainly pointed at Haefeli, has now moved back into work mode. Paul wants to discuss his ideas for the NFL Network special that Haefeli is making. I listen mostly, and notice that Haefeli is having a tough time following Paul. But after several passes Haefeli has his mission/suggestions from Paul. I receive the homework assignment’ to write this diary. I’m told to write it as I would a letter to my wife. What? Why? Still not sure, as I sit here writing this, but the words on these pages are something that I take seriously, having spent to date nearly 5-6 hours doing so.
1:00AM. Mike Walley moves gently over to our table Paul tells him to fuck off jokingly he really was kidding. The servers want to take away the food and Paul hasn’t eaten. Paul leaves us and it strikes me that this could quite be his first meal’ since the work-day has started. Regardless of how hard we work the reality is that the same can be said for him.
1:25AM. I leave to accompany Haefeli and Robby on a cigarette run outside and return
a few minutes later. We sing Happy Birthday to Margo as a massive chocolate sheet
cake is carried to her. After a round of for she’s a jolly good fellow,’ Paul hands her
what she refers to as a blue bag and her card from all those gathered.
1:27AM. Margot opens the blue bag (obviously from Tiffany’s) revealing a small blue box.
1:28AM. Margot opens the small blue box revealing a small blue pouch
1:29 AM. Margot opens the small blue pouch and finds a beautiful necklace, which she
promptly deposits on her neck.
1:30AM. No cake for me as I slip out with Mark H. and Robby as they fulfill their late-
night nicotine craving once again.
As I return to the party, believe it or not I realize that it’s time to go back to work. I believe I’m the first to leave and this is when this diary begins with me furiously tapping the computer keys documenting our visit to Jacksonville for Superbowl XXXIX at 2 o’clock in the morning.
Friday, February 4th.
8:30AM. The night was a long one, I overslept, and when I call Robby, Phil and Mark to find no answer on their cell phones or in their rooms I wonder if everyone has left the hotel without me. I’m reminded of the call last night at 3am informing me that the tape of Paul answering football questions’ is at the front desk. Paul needs to approve before his departure for New York in order for it to have any immediate media meaning. I jump out of bed and get to work.
9:00AM. Call Mike Walley, he tells me I have about an hour until Paul’s departure. Great. I deliver the tape and wait. Entries in this diary, confirmation of the Terry Bradshaw interview, a discussion with Barrie asking my opinion concerning our audience’ and a call to Vanessa in New York City to attempt to schedule Paul’s meeting with the head of the firefighters union. The work continues. By the way, there’s no show or rehearsal today.
10:30AM. By now I’ve barged into Robby’s room to do my part in some research concerning a radio promotion that supposedly has been done for audience contest winners. I read the paperwork that Robby has printed out for me. Everything seems to be in order but do we ever really know if we don’t do it ourselves? Further, is it realistic to think that we actually can do everything ourselves considering the workload? There’s a knock on the door. John Hammel enters. Here’s your tape. #1 is good, #2 is no good, he says looking at me handing me back the video tape that I had given to Mike Walley 30 minutes earlier. What? #1? #2? What the hell is he talking about? I assume he’s speaking about the tape and the soundbites. Paul says just to use the first bit. He mentions something about being colorblind, but at least this confirms my suspicions about what to give out. I deliver the information to Mark Haefeli, who happens to enter the room a minute or two later, the edit is being made and the tape is sure to add to the already massive media coverage that Paul is receiving for this appearance. I return to my room to continue entries in this diary.
12:15AM. While others are urging me to get out of the hotel. At least enjoy part of the day. Let’s go into town. At this point I succumb only to the urgency to grab some breakfast. So after getting ready and continuing to run through my matters of the day, I hop downstairs for a quick bowl of oatmeal with Mike, Robby and Mark, who by now are also in full work mode.
1:00PM. The day continues with more detail work concerning Paul’s interview with Terry Bradshaw, last minute tweaking of the show (the issue of the day is clearly the audience’) and my need to get Paul’s meeting for early next week scheduled in New York. My cell phone doesn’t really stop ringing.
2:30PM. Emails are flying back and forth, calls are going on between the participants and the NFL is frantically consulting with their Gestapo to see if we can run brand new radio promos to get more fans on the field audience. Paul wants our road vibe’ and rightfully so. I refuse to begin the process at radio on the grounds that if we do this and the winners aren’t granted access to the field that Paul will suffer the public consequences. Barrie agrees. Other arrangements are getting made.
8:30PM. Robby, Mike, Mark, Wix and Margo, Brian and Rusty find Joe’s Place, a nice spot on Amelia Island and enjoy a meal of fun conversation and memories. The day’s work is over for now. One day closer to the Superbowl and tomorrow will bring well, who knows.
Saturday, February 5th.
7:30AM. Grab my computer and start making entries in this diary aware that at this moment I have no idea what the day will bring. I realize that I never did get the call back from Paul’s PA concerning the firefighters meeting in New York. I gather there is always Monday, but man is that cutting everything close. Really is nothing that I can do about it. I’ll just move on to more immediate matters and hope for the best. We’ll just need to make Tuesday work somehow, or not.
12:15PM. Lunch with Mike, Robby and Haefeli. The news of the day is a letter that Paul has written that has been posted on Heather’s website. It defends the barrage of erroneous and frivolous news stories that have followed them in England for the past year or so. This will be big news. But how can I get word to Paul of what is happening? I inform Mike Walley in the hope that he’ll speak to Paul at some point in the day. In the meantime it’s clear that Stuart (Paul’s British publicist) and I should stand clear and let Paul’s extremely eloquent words stand on their merit.
2:00PM. The afternoon is filled with last minute details. The media placement for the Halftime performance and interview, the request from band members for tickets to a party in town, further discussion regarding Paul’s audience’ for the show and more.
7:45PM. As I sit in my room working, a call comes in from Vanessa, one of Paul’s Assistants. Appears that I won’t need to wait until Monday to find out when Paul can meet with the firefighters union chief. Noon on Tuesday it is. I immediately call my contact in New York City and leave a message on his cell phone. Time to get ready. Many of us are meeting at 8:30 for dinner. Hopefully there won’t be much more work tonight. But you can never be too sure. Tomorrow is the day.
10:30PM. MAKEUP! I inquire to ensure that makeup will be on hand for Paul. Nobody seems sure, so I leave the dinner to go to my room to phone the makeup artist. Barrie follows. We go to his room. Phil informs me that he’ll do whatever necessary. I phone her, thankfully I had taken her number down, and she is in fact available throughout the day and the NFL has made the necessary arrangements for us. I ask if she can be on sight a bit earlier then the brief she has been given and she agrees. Potential disaster avoided.
11:45PM. Memories of the past tours are discussed with fondness as people get up from their seats to mingle over dessert. Lee Eastman has flown in and Michele has returned from London. Paul’s new stylist is in attendance. She fits in nicely. People begin to leave for bed one by one over the next hour or so.
1:05AM. I return to my room. Tonight I’ve been one of the last to leave. I immediately return to the place I’ve spent much of the past two days my computer to make a few journal entries. The Superbowl is imminent. I really do hope that everything goes well.
Sunday, February 6.
8:30AM. I’m awoken, thankfully (or not), by a phone call alerting me to specific stories that have broken in London concerning an open letter to the media written by Paul. The letter addresses the true story behind several smaller stories that have run over the course of the past year, with the overall thematic that Heather is controlling Paul. The letter from Paul, posted on Heather’s website, defends her. I speak with our UK publicist Stuart Bell and inform our team of the matter. We agree again, that the letter is so eloquently written it needs no follow-up.
10:15AM. Breakfast with Lee, Mike, Michele and Robby. I’m concerned, and wondering how to handle this matter with Paul. It’s decided that we’ll wait the day until telling him. He is after all about to go on stage in front of 144.4 million US viewers. But that decision, even though the right one, will weigh on me throughout the day. I don’t like keeping things from people.
11:00AM. Two vans’ have already departed for the compound. We’re to return there to rehearse until we’re needed up at the stadium. We continue to discuss the breaking news’ and other last minute details are addressed as well.
12:15AM. We arrive at the compound and immediately I gather Barrie, Robby, Mitch and a member of Charles’ security team for a second advance for the Bradshaw interview. We map out Paul’s route to the stadium. The one suggested is unacceptable. We amend, we secure special security clearance to use a golf cart inside the stadium, we ask about security through a public hall’ (we’re told that we’re to be supported by 17 secret service agents (take note) and I re-emphasize the interview content, physical placement, microphone and monitor situation direct with David Hill, the president of FOX Sports. All seems in order and we leave to return to the compound.
1:15PM. Paul arrives at the compound. The sun is shining. It is the warmest day of the week. Good news. He goes to his trailer.
2:00PM. Paul emerges and begins rehearsal. It’s flawless. You can feel the excitement building now.
3:00PM. After rehearsal Paul returns to his trailer.
4:00PM. Team one departs to advance and be on hand for the Bradshaw interview. Robby, Barrie, Michele and Bill Bernstein.
4:15PM. Paul emerges from his trailer and calls me in for a briefing on what is next. We have a few minutes and I tell Paul that we should be on our way by about 4:40. He agrees, picks out clothing, gets made up and I wait outside with security, John and Mike.
4:35PM. Robby calls. I can barely hear him but he tells me that he has a situation.’ It is pandemonium along the route to the FOX broadcast booth. I’m standing next to Charles. I inform him. Robby asks me when we’re leaving and as he asks I tell him that we’ll be there in 10 minutes. There seems to be nothing that Charles can do. I hear Barrie screaming in the background, and at that very moment Paul comes out of his trailer. I yell into the phone (not sure Robby can hear me) We’re rolling.
4:50PM. Flawless. Bus takes us to the base of the stadium. As security promised we get on the golf cart, which takes us through the stadium, passed a marching band, waiving fans and grounds crews. The elevator to the 1st floor is waiting and the area at the base of the elevator is clear. We’re told that we’ll be going to our left into a holding room it is exactly as was planned. We’re right on time. The doors to the elevator open and there is wall-to-wall commotion. Pandemonium. Fans are all over the place and Paul is quickly whisked into the holding/makeup room. It is total anarchy and chaos. I look at Robby and Barrie, and what I presume is Fox’s head of security, who assures us that he has enough security to take us through the crowd to the booth. He is adamant about it, but nobody seems to follow his lead. There is chaos, commotion and the screaming fans are chanting Paul, Paul, Paul. Unbelievable, but the situation is unsafe. As we move towards the booth as agreed, for some reason someone puts us back into the elevator. The crowd boos. Someone has decided that we’ll go up one flight, where it is clear, and walk down to the booth. But, as the elevator is closing Paul bangs it open and takes charge of the situation himself. He points to the Fox security guard, who seems to be in control, (perhaps he just has the loudest voice) and we all get out of the elevator and sure enough we are led to the broadcast booth. Two words come to mind Holy Shit. We get there safely.
5:00PM. Paul arrives on the set, all our staff is in place, and the interview itself goes flawlessly. Paul sings with Bradshaw, announces the forthcoming tour and has a bit of fun. Mission accomplished there.
5:08PM. Security intends on bringing Paul out the same way, same path that we’ve just taken. They spend the little time that they have during the interview clearing out the space. A ring is formed around Paul and away we go. With pandemonium still raging we get Paul to the elevator and down, back to the golf cart below. We leave.
5:30PM. We’ve made it to the corporate box that has been provided to Paul by the NFL. The band is awaiting our return along with a few members of our party. Haefeli enters the room and smiles to Paul thinking that he’s just gotten something great for his NFL Network Making Of. Paul seems genuinely concerned by what just happened. Obviously how can anyone blame him? His safety is first above all else. But, man it was a great rock n’ roll moment.
6:40PM. The game starts and sides are immediately drawn. Members of our party declare their favoritism and much like the 80,000 assembled it seems split. Some of us are for Philadelphia and some for New England. Even though Paul rooted for New England at the last Superbowl, I never do get a sense that Paul roots for anyone in this game. He just seems to enjoy the spectacle of it all. We’ll stay to the end.
7:30PM. Barrie and Phil begin working away frantically. Along with our security detail it appears as though they are carefully mapping out Paul’s next movements. Wendy, our stylist, swings into action and Paulette is standing by for that last minute powder. The game is a tight low scoring affair but the half is winding down and our sole purpose for being there is fast becoming the reality.
8:25PM. High fives all around as Paul and the band depart with members of the crew for the field/stage. I decide, along with Lee Eastman to stay in what is clearly the best seat in the house a corporate box draped over the aisle splitting the 50-yard line.
8:40PM. The stage is moved out on the field. It is an unbelievable sight. I’m told later in the evening that instead of the 6-minutes, it’s taken just 4 minutes 38 seconds to move into place. The opening video hits the big screens at either end of the stadium. I’m standing in a position to see the field, as well as the in-house monitors inside the box. Paul is introduced and the crowd goes absolutely nuts.
8:45PM. ‘Drive My Car’ is flawless. Get Back’ absolutely rocks and I can’t help but think that the NFL censors have missed JoJo and his California grass. Appears that I wouldn’t be the only one as newspapers, the following day, will point out the lyric in countless stories. Love that. Live and Let Die’ secures its place as one of the best live songs ever, supported by a fireworks display that is second to none. The other 50% of the fireworks that we didn’t see in dress rehearsal arrive in grand fashion as the helicopter cameras catch explosions 30 feet above the stadium. And then there’s Hey Jude, a global sing-along that will go down as the world’s largest ever, complete with lights and nah, nah, nah cards. The 12-minute performance passes in a flash and I’m left wishing that we could see more. I will later find out that I’m not the only one that feels that way. Mission accomplished. There’s a tour this Fall and this is all the ammunition that one needs to jumpstart that baby.
9:10PM. Paul and band return to the roar of our team hugs and high fives. Order is restored in time to discover that New England has taken the lead and we are almost done with the 3rd quarter. Paul and the band change and our dinner is served. Paul leans over to sneak a peek at some of the footage that Haefeli has captured on his Hi-Def handheld and Craig Braden reviews his own tape revealing a lady that was trapped momentarily under a riser being brought out on the field. She’s not injured. Spingo arrives in the box, captures the lone tin of popcorn, and proclaims that his Blackberry won’t stop vibrating. There are emails from crewmembers with Bon Jovi, Aerosmith, Godsmack, his mom and more. And all of our phones continue to ring with nothing but praise throughout the rest of the night.
10:00PM. It’s the 4th quarter, New England still leads, and I realize that Robby is nowhere to be found. Something is wrong. I call him. He sounds angry and has apparently just finished a battle with Don Mischer. I offer to help him, attempt to get him to return to the box, let him know he’s missed, but we’ll meet him back at the buses when we leave for the night. I’ll find out eventually what has happened.
10:40PM. Paul alerts Phil that we’re going to leave with the Eagles down by 10 points. There is roughly 3 minutes left in the game. One play after Springo warns Paul that the Eagles still have a chance to win, McNabb hits a streaking wide receiver for a touchdown and it’s a 3-point game. We’ll stay, says Paul laughing. There is after all the onside kick, but once New England recovers, the game is over and with the mood still high we leave the box to our bus and police motorcade.
11:00PM. I enter a car with Phil, Robby and Michele and immediately Robby tells me what has happened to him. First, Mischer, our director, after multiple alerts to secure a particular shot of Paul from the stage has missed that shot. Robby is furious. Second, he’s been told that the DVD that Paul has requested for viewing purposes back at the hotel would not be available. Robby tells me that he has gone nuclear on Don (and David Hill who is standing nearby), tells them off for the security screw-up back at the FOX booth earlier in the evening (for which David Hill accepts responsibility) and proceeds to tongue lash them. I’ve seen this before and know that it is at these moments that I fully appreciate having Robby on my side. He shows me the DVD and proceeds to vent further. I let him, knowing that it will eventually stop.
12:15PM. We are all thoroughly exhausted. All are leaving in the morning, but there is one last thing the celebration. I take about 15 minutes, go to my room to pack my bags and the walk down to the Grill Room in our hotel. Paul is standing speaking to a much leaner Bill Clinton. All are in attendance and the mood is excellent. There’s a DVD player standing by for us to view the performance. Good thing Robby got it from Mischer.
12:30PM. Mike ushers everyone to the food and encourages them to dig into the various pizzas, polentas and pastas. I join the fray. Barrie and I take a seat at a table and begin to talk about the next phase. He wants to meet, have conference calls and grab Robby and I to brainstorm and to discuss tour planning.
12:45PM. As Wix is to leave he has the earliest flight out Barrie grabs Robby to show the DVD. He doesn’t want Wix to miss it. Paul grabs a chair in front of the television, with most of the band at his side and the rest of us stand huddled around the set eager to see the fruits of our collective labor. The moment of truth. It’s just as good the second time around. Paul is smiling, the band is singing along and we’re all whooping and hollering. Mission accomplished. The tape ends and regardless of the shot that worries Robby, the one that Mischer didn’t get, Paul stands and toasts the crew. He thanks all in the room, praises the toughness and quality of our team in the trenches, the creativity of his lighting director Roy Bennett (who I believe celebrates his finest hour at Superbowl XXXIX) and the party roars on.
1:15PM. Paul strolls over to the pianist and bassist who are our entertainment for the evening and sings a few standards. The party continues. Conversation continues and one by one people begin to leave. Robby and I make a pact that we’re staying until the end not sure of why but we actually do close the room. Perhaps the week has been so difficult that we decide that this would be our victory the last ones standing.
1:30PM. I notice Haefeli sitting, writing and walk over. He’s working away. Writing questions for John Hammel, who will ask them of Paul (more then likely on camera) for his making of.’ He asks me for some help. How can I resist and at nearly 2 in the morning, yet again, I’m writing. It works, because about 20 minutes later Mark proclaims that he’s got the questions he wants. He hands John the paper and our work is truly done for the night.
2:45PM. Paul says his final goodbyes and true to our pact, Robby and I leave the room, with Michele, and go to bed. It has been a long day. One that we will never forget.
Monday, February 7th.
8:30AM. I am awoken by my alarm.
9:30AM. I call Mike and ask him to alert me when Paul gets up. I still need to let him know about the stories out of England regarding his note defending Heather. Mike tells me that he will and I let him know that I should be available via my cell phone for a few hours. I have a flight back to New York to catch.
10:30AM. I leave the hotel to go to the airport, along with the rest of the New York City team (Bill and Haefeli). I buzz John to let him know that if he sees or speaks to Paul that I should really discuss the British papers with him.
11:45AM. I arrive at the airport and as we’re getting out of the car I get the call. I speak to Paul. It has been very important to me that I let him know what is happening. The conversation lasts all of 4 minutes but I’m relieved that he now knows. No immediate instructions.
12:30PM. I finally get the representative for the Uniformed Firefighters Association who tells me that Noon tomorrow is perfect. I confirm, alert Vanessa to the names of those that will be in attendance, and let her know that I will see Paul at noon tomorrow in New York City. My flight is boarding. It’s been quite a trip. As I walk onto the plane I realize that, although thoroughly exhausted, I will one day perhaps read this diary again, and look back on it all and smile.
Last updated on January 20, 2021
This was the 1st and only concert played at ALLTEL Stadium.
Setlist for the concert