Wednesday, July 14, 2010


Yesterday, my oldest son took us out for a simply sublime evening with Paul McCartney.

What a showman, this guy!

He played non-stop for just shy of three hours. The mix was probably something like 25% Wings and 74% Beatles plus a Jimmy Hendrix number. Now, there are a lot of Beatles-tribute bands out there, but you have to admit that the best one of all has to be the one coincidentally headed up by Paul McCartney.

There wasn't too much between-song banter, but just a bit. At one point McCartney adopted a sort of ashamed look and said, "You're probably wondering why we keep changing guitars all the time up here. We're just showing off." He then produced, and used, the guitar he recorded with during the Rubber Soul timeframe, a hollow-body Gibson. There were lots of Gibsons used in the show including a Gold Top and another very flashy, hand-decorated Les Paul. I was fighting back a strong case of envy.

Then he launched into an anecdote about Hendrix' first concert in England. It seems after a particularly grueling number during which he had really punished his guitar, flexing it, beating it, etc. he asked if Eric Clapton were in the audience (which he was) and then begged him to come up and tune it back up.

There was a song for Linda, one for John and another for George. There were big fireworks during Live or Let Die with raging gas burners across the front of the stage. Seated down maybe 20 rows back and to the right of stage, we were engulfed in gunpowder for much of the song. Fortunately, there was a light evening breeze.

At one point, he carried the flag of Utah around on the stage waving it while another band member carried the Union Jack.

After Paul left the stage at the end, we clapped for an encore, of course, probably planned. (Well, it's probably all planned, isn't it?) He returned to do Yesterday to the delight of my youngest daughter. I removed my ear protection at that point. After that, we clapped again and cheered. He said, "So, you still wanna rock and roll?!" Whereupon followed a particularly ebullient rendition of Helter Skelter and more clapping and cheering. Then he said, "Well this has to come to an end. We've got to go home and get some rest. And you have to go home too."

Then, they did The End from Abbey Road, the goodbye music, and we kept clapping and cheering. The last number was Sgt. Pepper's, which is goodbye music too, but just to underline the point, several tons of confetti were blown out nearly filling the stadium.

This was Sir Paul's first time in Salt Lake and Utah. I hope he felt our warm welcome. We certainly appreciated his show. All things considered, he very well may never make it back here. So, I count it as a very unique and memorable experience.

Oh yeah! All right! Are you going to be in my dreams, tonight?
Love you. Love you.
And, in the end, the love you take is equal to the love you make!

It's Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club band, we hope that you enjoyed the show.

We did. Immensely. Thanks. And thanks, Vic, for taking us. We love you!

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