Even the jokes are cliché. Paul McCartney is so famous—so iconic, so influential a pop cultural figure—that we can't even make "maybe you've heard of him" quips or slap a sarcastic label like "promising singer/songwriter from Liverpool" on a record-store display of his work without being trite. His fame is so transcendent, it’s immune to humor. It's not fleeting like most celebrity; after more than 50 years, it's a universally accepted fact of life. Joking about it is like joking about the sky being blue or water being wet. Even at age 76, it's hard to imagine a room he could walk into and not be among its most well-known occupants. Presidents and other heads of state who grew up listening to his music geek out in his presence (hey, an especially apt performance of "Michelle" will do that). "Yesterday" remains the most recorded song of all time. Just last week, on the heels of announcing a new album due this fall, he made James Corden cry.