There’s something very sad about the criticism of Paul McCartney’s performance on Saturday night at Glastonbury. Social media is full of it – or should I say full of shit? – to the extent that Macca was somehow “past it”, “couldn’t sing anymore”, “overrated” and Christ knows what else. And with social media, it’s better for me to let people vent their feelings without responding and rising to the bait. With Macca, there’s a certain ugliness about the criticism.

Let’s address the question of his voice. Well, he’s 80 and, yes, his voice is thinner than it used to be and occasionally more rasping. But here’s the thing: he still sings in the same key as he did in the 1960s and he never shirks the more challenging songs. If you’re saying he’s “past it”, then what do you mean? Saturday’s extraordinary setlist covered everything from the Quarrymen through the Beatles and Wings right through to his more recent music. And “overrated”? Do me a favour. McCartney and the Beatles were and are underrated. If you are tone deaf, it’s reasonable to say you don’t like McCartney and the Beatles but, as every significant musician from the 1960s onwards will tell you, none of them would be here but for the Beatles. In terms of music, they changed the world.

To those who say, Macca should just retire, pack it in; then again, why? Should Elton John retire simply because he now sings in a much lower key because he can’t get anywhere near the high notes anymore? I suggest the people who saw his farewell shows at Bristol C*ty’s ground would politely, or impolitely, disagree with you. Did those who saw Robert Plant’s brilliant set with Alison Krauss call on him to retire because he can’t sing like he did 50 years ago? No. No one mentioned Elton or Planty. It’s Macca. It’s personal.

In today’s Broken Britain, success is something not to be celebrated. Paul McCartney’s stellar career, with a back catalogue of the some of the greatest music ever made, doesn’t matter to the haters who seem unable to look for the best in people. Yet for all his great success and wealth, Macca stayed true to his beliefs, stayed humble and, unlike so many others in his position, sent his own children to state schools.

If social media is anything to go by – and I am not sure that it is – then many people watched McCartney in order to hate his performance. Worse still, they started watching with the express intention of hating it. How utterly sad must your life be to watch something in order to hate it?

To my ears, Paul McCartney’s headlining set was magnificent. Not just for an 80 year old, but for anyone. A friend suggested to me it was a “crowd-pleasing set” but it really wasn’t. I’d describe it more as a fuck you set, where McCartney played what he wanted, rather than appearing as a Glastonbury jukebox. Not for him a karaoke set, but one that spanned his career.  The great man basically said he didn’t care if people didn’t want to hear the new stuff. For me, that was spot on. New music, new life and a reason, not that I needed one, why I didn’t bother with Elton John’s oldies set. You are not wrong if you went to see the old boy to hear the old songs and nothing but the old songs: I just like new music that I haven’t heard before, along with the hits. If no one thought like that, we’d all be listening to Mario Fucking Lanza and Guy Mitchell.

More than anything, if you can’t find a good word to say about the Beatles in general and McCartney in particular, then listen to or do something else. Listen to some generic stuff on Heart Radio or Smooth, if it floats your boat. But above all, try to stop hating. Hate gave us Trump, Putin, Farage, Johnson, Bolsonaro and Orbán. The Beatles gave us great music and love. And let’s face it, all you need is love.