PHOTOS: Paul McCartney’s historic 1976 Fort Worth concert, Wings Over America tour

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It was a historic moment in rock and roll and Fort Worth was the stage.

Paul McCartney and Wings kicked off their “Wings Over America” tour on May 3, 1976 at the Tarrant County Convention Center.

But this wasn’t just McCartney and Wings’ tour opener, this was his first concert in North America since The Beatles final tour in the summer of 1966. Media from all over the country was on hand to report on the event.

McCartney returns to Fort Worth for the first time in 46 years when he brings his “Got Back” tour to a sold out Dickies Arena Tuesday night.

Here are selected images shot by the Star-Telegram that night culled from the Fort Worth Star-Telegram Collection at the UTA Libraries.

Paul McCartney and Wings opened their first United States tour, “Wings Over America,” at the Tarrant County Convention Center, attracting a packed house which was sold out two months before the show. The ex-Beatle, Paul McCartney, is seen here performing on stage during the concert; 05/03/1976.
Paul McCartney and Wings opened their first United States tour, “Wings Over America,” at the Tarrant County Convention Center, attracting a packed house which was sold out two months before the show. The ex-Beatle, Paul McCartney, is seen here performing on stage during the concert; 05/03/1976.
Paul McCartney and Wings opened their first United States tour, “Wings Over America,” at the Tarrant County Convention Center on May 3, 1976. The tour was delayed from an original April 8 start date because of the March 18 passing of McCartney’s father.
Paul McCartney and Wings opened their first United States tour, “Wings Over America,” at the Tarrant County Convention Center on May 3, 1976. The tour was delayed from an original April 8 start date because of the March 18 passing of McCartney’s father.
Paul McCartney performed several songs at a piano during the Wings’ show on May 3, 1976 at the Tarrant County Convention Center, including “Maybe I’m Amazed,” “Live and Let Die,” and “Let ‘Em In.”
Paul McCartney performed several songs at a piano during the Wings’ show on May 3, 1976 at the Tarrant County Convention Center, including “Maybe I’m Amazed,” “Live and Let Die,” and “Let ‘Em In.”
Linda and Paul McCartney married on March 12, 1969, a week before John Lennon married Yoko Ono. The McCartneys were married for 29 years until Linda McCartney died from breast cancer in 1998. She toured and played with Paul in concert through 1993.
Linda and Paul McCartney married on March 12, 1969, a week before John Lennon married Yoko Ono. The McCartneys were married for 29 years until Linda McCartney died from breast cancer in 1998. She toured and played with Paul in concert through 1993.
Paul McCartney opened the May 3, 1976 show at the Tarrant County Convention Center with a “Howdy, Texas!” It was McCartney’s first North American concert since The Beatles last tour in the summer of 1966.
Paul McCartney opened the May 3, 1976 show at the Tarrant County Convention Center with a “Howdy, Texas!” It was McCartney’s first North American concert since The Beatles last tour in the summer of 1966.
Paul McCartney and Wings’ tour-opening show at the Tarrant County Convention Center on May 3, 1976 opened with the title track from the album “Venus and Mars,” “Rock Show,” and “Jet.” The 29-song set included five Beatles classics.
Paul McCartney and Wings’ tour-opening show at the Tarrant County Convention Center on May 3, 1976 opened with the title track from the album “Venus and Mars,” “Rock Show,” and “Jet.” The 29-song set included five Beatles classics.
Paul McCartney and Wings played their first ever North American concert on May 3, 1976 at the Tarrant County Convention Center. Among the five Beatles classics played during the 29-song set, were “Lady Madonna,” The Long and Winding Road,” and “Blackbird.”
Paul McCartney and Wings played their first ever North American concert on May 3, 1976 at the Tarrant County Convention Center. Among the five Beatles classics played during the 29-song set, were “Lady Madonna,” The Long and Winding Road,” and “Blackbird.”
Paul McCartney and Wings played their first ever North American concert on May 3, 1976 at the Tarrant County Convention Center. They played 29 songs, including five Beatles classics, over two hours.
Paul McCartney and Wings played their first ever North American concert on May 3, 1976 at the Tarrant County Convention Center. They played 29 songs, including five Beatles classics, over two hours.
Tickets to Paul McCartney and Wings tour-opening show at Tarrant County Convention Center on May 3, 1976 were sold out months in advance. The “Wings Over America” tour was the first time McCartney had played North America since The Beatles last tour in the summer of 1966.
Tickets to Paul McCartney and Wings tour-opening show at Tarrant County Convention Center on May 3, 1976 were sold out months in advance. The “Wings Over America” tour was the first time McCartney had played North America since The Beatles last tour in the summer of 1966.
Tickets to Paul McCartney and Wings tour-opening show at Tarrant County Convention Center on May 3, 1976 were sold out months in advance. The “Wings Over America” tour was the first time McCartney had played North America since The Beatles last tour in the summer of 1966.
Tickets to Paul McCartney and Wings tour-opening show at Tarrant County Convention Center on May 3, 1976 were sold out months in advance. The “Wings Over America” tour was the first time McCartney had played North America since The Beatles last tour in the summer of 1966.
Paul McCartney and Wings opened their first United States tour, “Wings Over America,” at the Tarrant County Convention Center on May 3, 1976. The band played 29 songs, including five Beatles classics, over two hours.
Paul McCartney and Wings opened their first United States tour, “Wings Over America,” at the Tarrant County Convention Center on May 3, 1976. The band played 29 songs, including five Beatles classics, over two hours.
Paul McCartney and Wings opened their first United States tour, “Wings Over America,” at the Tarrant County Convention Center on May 3, 1976. It was McCartney’s first North American concert since touring with The Beatles in 1966.
Paul McCartney and Wings opened their first United States tour, “Wings Over America,” at the Tarrant County Convention Center on May 3, 1976. It was McCartney’s first North American concert since touring with The Beatles in 1966.
Paul McCartney and Wings opened their first United States tour, “Wings Over America,” at the Tarrant County Convention Center, attracting a packed house which was sold out two months before the show.
Paul McCartney and Wings opened their first United States tour, “Wings Over America,” at the Tarrant County Convention Center, attracting a packed house which was sold out two months before the show.
Paul McCartney last performed a concert in North America in the summer of 1966 during The Beatles final tour. On May 3, 1976, McCartney and Wings opened their first North American tour at Tarrant County Convention Center.
Paul McCartney last performed a concert in North America in the summer of 1966 during The Beatles final tour. On May 3, 1976, McCartney and Wings opened their first North American tour at Tarrant County Convention Center.
Tickets sold out about two months in advance of Paul McCartney and Wings’ May 3, 1976 concert at the Tarrant County Convention Center.
Tickets sold out about two months in advance of Paul McCartney and Wings’ May 3, 1976 concert at the Tarrant County Convention Center.
Paul McCartney and Wings, including then wife Linda, opened their first United States tour, “Wings Over America,” at the Tarrant County Convention Center on May 3, 1976.
Paul McCartney and Wings, including then wife Linda, opened their first United States tour, “Wings Over America,” at the Tarrant County Convention Center on May 3, 1976.
Paul McCartney opened the May 3, 1976 show at the Tarrant County Convention Center with a “Howdy, Texas!” It was McCartney’s first North American concert since The Beatles last tour in the summer of 1966.
Paul McCartney opened the May 3, 1976 show at the Tarrant County Convention Center with a “Howdy, Texas!” It was McCartney’s first North American concert since The Beatles last tour in the summer of 1966.
Paul McCartney, right, and Wings, including, Linda McCartney, and Denny Laine, left, sat for a string of acoustic songs, including the Beatles classics “I’ve Just Seen a Face,” “Blackbird,” and “Yesterday” during the “Wings Over America” tour, which opened May 3, 1976 at the Tarrant County Convention Center.
Paul McCartney, right, and Wings, including, Linda McCartney, and Denny Laine, left, sat for a string of acoustic songs, including the Beatles classics “I’ve Just Seen a Face,” “Blackbird,” and “Yesterday” during the “Wings Over America” tour, which opened May 3, 1976 at the Tarrant County Convention Center.
This view of the crowd in attendance for Paul McCartney and Wings on May 3, 1976 at the Tarrant County Convention Center shows the stage on the opposite end of the arena, in front of a sea of floor seating. The show was the “Wings Over America” tour opener and the first concert McCartney has performed in North America since The Beatles final tour in the summer of 1966.
This view of the crowd in attendance for Paul McCartney and Wings on May 3, 1976 at the Tarrant County Convention Center shows the stage on the opposite end of the arena, in front of a sea of floor seating. The show was the “Wings Over America” tour opener and the first concert McCartney has performed in North America since The Beatles final tour in the summer of 1966.
Tickets to Paul McCartney and Wings tour-opening show at Tarrant County Convention Center on May 3, 1976 were sold out months in advance. The “Wings Over America” tour was the first time McCartney had played North America since The Beatles last tour in the summer of 1966.
Tickets to Paul McCartney and Wings tour-opening show at Tarrant County Convention Center on May 3, 1976 were sold out months in advance. The “Wings Over America” tour was the first time McCartney had played North America since The Beatles last tour in the summer of 1966.
1970s bell bottoms? Check. 70s mustache? Check. Gigantic Polaroid camera? Check. Fans attending Paul McCartney and Wings’ tour-opening show at Tarrant County Convention Center on May 3, 1976 were treated to 29 songs, including five Beatles classics over two hours.
1970s bell bottoms? Check. 70s mustache? Check. Gigantic Polaroid camera? Check. Fans attending Paul McCartney and Wings’ tour-opening show at Tarrant County Convention Center on May 3, 1976 were treated to 29 songs, including five Beatles classics over two hours.
An aerial view of Tarrant County Convention Center and downtown Fort Worth looking northeast in the late 1970s.
An aerial view of Tarrant County Convention Center and downtown Fort Worth looking northeast in the late 1970s.
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