Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Paul McCartney

T-Shirts from all three of the shows I've been to


What can I say about what Paul McCartney means to me? His music has warmed my heart and kept me company for about 15 years now...though it feels longer. I don't know if it's possible to accurately express why certain artists touch us the way they do. Paul is my first musical love.

I got into the Beatles while in High was pretty much all on my own because my parents didn't have Beatles albums in our basement like so many of my friends. My Dad was a musician and played in a top 40 band for years, but it always amused me how when I asked him, "Hey, you know that song, (insert popular song here)" he would answer..."No, I don't think so..." and then a week later, the same song would come on in my car and he would say, "We used to play that..." ("We" being the band he had played in for years).

He certainly remembered watching The Beatles on The Ed Sullivan Show...something I will always lament not being a part of...The Whole BeatleMania phenomenon...although I think becoming a Beatle and Paul fan when I did was meant to be.

It all started in a very improbable way. I had become a big fan of Monty Python, and because I get obsessed and have to see it all, I rented "The Rutles: All You Need is Cash," which is a (very accurate) Beatles Spoof that Eric Idle did. I was enjoying the silly music and thought, "Hmm...I should get some Beatles music, I'd probably like it."

So, I went out and bought a cassette of The Beatles' Greatest hits...

Game Over.

That was definitely when one of the first little pieces of "Me" fell into place. I then embarked upon my journey of getting all the albums. I taped "The Beatles Anthology" on ABC (and fumed when the VCR broke down) and delighted when my Dad got me the boxed set and book and Beatles memorabilia for Christmas (which includes a pocket knife and set of Beatles cake toppers...genius.) Dad even drove through a blizzard in order to take me to see "Beatlemania" in New London. If that's not supporting a passion, I don't know what is! I was also a member of the Paul McCartney "Fun Club" in its final days before Linda died, and collected photos and books and info like a fiend...I even wrote a paper on the Beatles break up. LOL

I remember packing up all 13 albums carefully when I went to college...and taking comfort in Paul's voice when I went through darker times during my new life in NYC. Many a Beatles and or Paul song inspired my poetry back then.

The first time I saw Paul in concert was incredible (2002's "Driving Rain" tour). I was so excited, I gave myself a headache. I cried like a baby when he played "Something" on a ukelele that George had given him, "Here Today" for John...and inexplicably...during "Your Loving Flame."

The Second time I saw him (2005: Chaos and Creation in the Backyard) I went alone because I wanted to get up as close as I could "afford" and dork out as hard as I wanted to. I can't remember what I cried at that night or if I even did (I probably got a little misty during "Maybe I'm Amazed"). I was completely mesmerized by the fact that I didn't need to look at the giant monitors to see his face and expressions. It was amazing. I do remember how hard "Helter Skelter" rocked and that he sang "I'll Follow the Sun" on a loop because he apparently also thinks it's way too short for how lovely it is.

My view in 2005 at Madison Square Garden

Small snippet of "I Will" in 2005

On Friday, July 17th I had the privilege of seeing Sir Paul for a third, magical, time at Citifield...the new Shea Stadium. He was giving the first concert there just like The Beatles did for the Old Shea. I went with my good friend Krissy who had never seen him live before. Things had come full circle because I had gone with Krissy's sister, Gina, the first time I saw him in concert.

The ticket has a place of honor on my closet door :)

The Sky before the show...hoping it wouldn't rain..

My camera-phone makes the stage look farther away!

What can I say about the show?

Seeing Paul live is such a wonderful experience. He is so full of life and love and joy. He's like a little boy up there. I feel as if I'm seeing an old, beloved, friend and his voice feels like home to me (I sort of cuddle up into it). I basically beam from head to toe simply reveling in the sun that he shines on me.

He came out rather quietly in a very "Beatlesque" ensemble: collarless suit jacket, white button down shirt, suspenders and pointy (Beatle) boots with a bit of a heel (a few songs in he took off his jacket and all us ladies got silly and whooped...and he smiled). For some reason I got teary during the opening notes of "Let Me Roll It" then understandably so when he sang "My Love" and dedicated it to Linda...then miracle of miracles...he played Calico Skies...sigh. I have been wanting to hear that live for years. So, Thank You made my night, week, long have you got? :)

The Following Photos are by Madame K :)

He rocked out for his usual super long set, even in the rain, grabbing his heart theatrically after the over the top pyrotechnics of "Live and Let Die" (during which I screamed delightedly). He laughed with his band-mates, ruffling up his wet hair, giggling and smiling...delighting when all the girls whooped and screamed for him.

Live and Let Die!

He also sang "Something" and "Here Today" again as well as "I'm Down" (AWESOME!) which the Beatles played at the original Shea Concert.

"Something" on George's Ukelele

Every time he broke into a song I didn't expect to hear live, like "Flaming Pie" and "Mrs. Vanderbilt" I grabbed Krissy's arm and exclaimed "SHUT UP!!!" LOL

I could literally have stayed there forever...and when he ended with the Sgt Pepper reprise and then "The End" all I felt was love.


Calico Skies
by Paul McCartney

It was written that I would love you
From the moment I opened my eyes

And the morning when I first saw you

Gave me life under calico skies.
I will hold you for as long as you like
Ill hold you for the rest of my life

Always looking for ways to love you

Never failing to fight at your side

While the angels of love protect us

From the innermost secrets we hide
Ill hold you for as long as you like
Ill hold you for the rest of my life

Long live all of us were crazy soldiers who

Were born under calico skies
May we never be called to handle

All the weapons of war we despise

Ill hold you for as long as you like
Ill hold you for the rest of my life

Ill hold you for as long as you like

Ill love you for the rest of my...
For the rest of my life

Setlist - July 17, 2009:

"Drive My Car"
"Only Mama Knows"
"Flaming Pie"
"Got To Get You Into My Life"
"Let Me Roll It"
"The Long and Winding Road"
"My Love"
"Here Today"
"Dance Tonight"
"Calico Skies"
"Mrs. Vanderbilt"
"Eleanor Rigby"
"Sing the Changes "
"Band on the Run"
"Back in the U.S.S.R."
"I'm Down"
"I've Got a Feeling"
"Paperback Writer"
"A Day in the Life"/"Give Peace a Chance"
"Let It Be"
"Live and Let Die"
"Hey Jude"


"Day Tripper"
"Lady Madonna"
"I Saw Her Standing There (with Billy Joel)
"Helter Skelter"
"Get Back"
"Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band (Reprise)"/"The End"

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