On August 12th, 2010 I drove to Montreal to see Sir Paul McCartney at the Bell Centre. This was my second time seeing Mr. Sir Paul, and I can’t tell you how giddily happy it makes me to type that.
It goes without saying that The Beatles were a musical force unparalleled in the history of rock, the history of pop, the history of music itself in the latter half of the 20th Century. When the Beatles burst on the scene they set precedents and broke records with every move they made and now, more than a half-century later, their music has only grown in popularity.
(To put a point on it, while I typed the last sentence the kitchen staff [all teenagers] at the camp I’m currently working at turned on their radio and Here Comes The Sun started playing.)
Their music, their personalities, their attitude, their sound, their influence on pop culture, all of it was basically perfection; almost Bachian. And speaking of Bach, given a chance to take a ride in a time machine I would set my sights on either a Bach performance, a good show starring Jimi Hendrix, or possibly a trip all the way back to Neanderthal times to hear the first musical performance.
So to think that I can still go see good, solid performances by one of The Beatles without such a mythical device astounds me, and fortunately frees up my time machine choices by one.
I can go see one of The Beatles! And not just Ringo! Amazing.
And good, solid performances they are too. Sure, Mr. Sir Paul could skate through his tunes, could rest on his laurels and make a quick buck delivering sub-par performances but he doesn’t, no way. This guy loves music so much he refuses to give anything less than his all. His long-standing band is tight, his vocals and musical abilities seem utterly untouched by time, and most importantly his desire to go out on tour again and again is unwavering.
Aside from the standard brilliance of his performances a couple of things stand out for me from this show: Sir Paul played a new song that easily stood up to his legendary hits, prompting me to wonder why I don’t buy his new albums (can you imagine the guy has released over twenty albums post-Beatles?), and he pulled a girl out of the audience upon reading her sign that said something along the lines of “Please sign my arm, I have a tattoo artist waiting to make it permanent,” and he did.
It must be fun to do stuff like that, creating lifetime highlights for his fans with a flick of a Sharpie.
Oh, and the logo he was using on this tour was the first ambigram I had ever seen, and by the sound of the audience when the words “Paul McCartney” turned upside down on the big screen and still read “Paul McCartney” I’m guessing this was the first time most of us in the crowd had seen one.
In short – go see Sir Paul McCartney. As long as the Grim Reaper allows him to remain in our realm I’m sure gonna go every chance I get.
PS: After a romp through AC/DC and Green Day numbers, the staff iPod player just launched into Love Me Do. Amazing.