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2012 Grammy Awards Performances

Bruce Springsteen, Paul McCartney, Brian Wilson
Kevin Winter, Getty Images

The 2012 Grammy Awards finally arrived Sunday night, and while classic rockers weren’t up for many awards on the big night, they were well represented onstage. Rock and Roll Hall of Famers Bruce Springsteen, Paul McCartney and the Beach Boys all turned in top-shelf performances.

Springsteen and McCartney offered up selections from their latest albums, and the Beach Boys made a high-profile comeback in advance of their upcoming reunion tour. McCartney also returned to the stage for a medley of Beatles tunes that easily was one of the highlights of the night.

Here’s Ultimate Classic Rock’s review of each of their 2012 Grammy Awards sets — be sure to add in your two cents by leaving comments below.

Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band: What could be a better way to kick off the 2012 Grammy Awards than with Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band running through a rousing rendition of ‘We Take Care of Our Own,’ the first single off his new album, ‘Wrecking Ball?’ Backed by a string section, Bruce led his assembled outfit through the infectious tune with his typical high-octane show. [Watch here]

The Beach Boys: The much-hyped Beach Boys reunion — the band’s first performance together in more than 20 years, and this particular lineup’s first-ever public appearance — went ahead as planned, even if said plans were a little awkward. Brian Wilson and his bandmates a ran through a gorgeous version of their classic ‘Good Vibrations,’ immediately following a tribute set that featured pop act Maroon 5 taking a stab at the Boys’ ‘Surfer Girl’ and indie-rock darlings Foster the People trying their hand at ‘Pet Sounds’ opener ‘Wouldn’t it be Nice.’ [Watch here]

Paul McCartney: The Beatle followed his Best Historical Album Grammy win earlier in the night for the re-issue of his ‘Band on the Run’ album by turning in a stirring rendition of his current single ‘My Valentine’ with Eagles star Joe Walsh sitting in on guitar. It’s one of just two original compositions from ‘Kisses on the Bottom,’ but Paul did a good job making it sound like a well-worn classic. [Watch here]

In addition to that nugget, Paul did his best to steal the show, getting by with a little help from his famous friends Walsh, Springsteen and Dave Grohl of the Foo Fighters and pulling out some big guns from his catalog — namely a medley from the Beatles’ ‘Abbey Road.’ The all-star collective finished off the night with a scorching jam that managed to both bring everything a satisfying conclusion and leave fans begging for more. [Watch here].

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