On May 24, 2003, Paul McCartney makes his first visit to the Soviet Union, and performs his greatest hits, including “Maybe I’m Amazed,” for over 100,000 people at Red Square in Moscow — moving even grown men to tears. This clip is from McCartney Live in Red Square (2003), available at Amazon.com.

ABOUT THE CONCERT: For the Russian audience, McCartney’s appearance in Moscow is little short of a miracle. The Beatles were banned for decades by the Soviet government, which regarded their music as the epitome of Western decadence and propaganda, and the fans’ only access to the group was through the occasional black market album. Their reaction to his 2003 visit is a mixture of frenzy and rapture. In interview after interview, what one fan calls the Beatles’ “gentle intervention” is credited with helping to bring down the whole Soviet system, simply because they represented a creativity and freedom that had been almost totally silenced.