Paul McCartney played Madison Wisconsin for the first time on Thursday night June 6th. This was his 5th appearance in the Badger State counting the Beatles only appearance in Milwaukee in September of 1964. I attended this show by myself. My wife, kids, and friends were not interested and I was not paying for a pricey ticket for someone that did not really want to be there. Several family members and listeners told me that they thought Sir Paul should have retired a while back and that his voice was shot. I agree that the latest videos of his live singing have been rough. I simply wanted to go see him because he may never be this close to my house again. When I went to the Kohl Center, I expected a decent show but figured I could be a bit let down by the 76 year old (soon to be 77) as he struggled to hit the notes. This may be the biggest surprise concert that I have ever attended. Paul played from 8:15 p and when the band finished Carry That Weight/ The End it was 11:15 p. Entertainers that are half his age sometimes can not generate that much energy. I will admit that a few of the first few songs sounded a bit rough at times. Let Me Roll It (from the Band On the Run album) may have been his weakest vocal of the night. That is a tough song to sing. He looked a bit tired at first and the vocals were raspy, however, he sounded better and seemed to have more energy three hours later! I counted only two sips of water in all of that time. His band does help with some of the high notes. His powerful drummer Abe Laboriel Jr. is simpy amazing with his playing and backing vocals. Paul was very funny and did a great job with stories and he read many of the signs that were being held up in the audience. One gentlemen had a sign that exclaimed that this was the 123rd time that he had attended a Paul McCartney concert. “You know we love you, but it’s slightly obsessive,” McCartney responded with a grin. Previously I have gone to his concerts at stadiums with 50 thousand plus. The 15,000 that saw the show at the Kohl Center witnessed a much more intimate setting. The three person horn section really added to songs such as: Got To Get You Into My Life, Let Em In, Lady Madonna and many others. There were two high school boys that sat by me and they sang along to every song. I asked them how they knew the music so well. They said that they and all of their friends are McCartney fans. "He is the greatest ever" said one of them. I can't think of another living artist that has that kind of reverence from young to the older than me. I am so glad that I went to this concert. Here is the playlist.
1. A Hard Days Night 2. Save Us 3. Can't Buy Me Love 4. Letting Go 5. Who Cares 6. Who Cares 7. Got To Get You Into My Life 8. Come On To Me 9. Let Me Roll It 10. I've Got A Feeling 11. Let 'Em In 12. My Valentine 13. Nineteen Hundred and Eighty-Five 14. Maybe I'm Amazed 15. I've Just Seen A Face 16. In Spite Of All The Danger (The Quarrymen Song) 17. From Me To You 18. Dance Tonight 19. Love Me Do (George Martin tribute) 20. Blackbird 21. Here Today (John Lennon tribute) 22. Queenie Eye 23. Lady Madonna 24. Eleanor Rigby 25. Fuh You 26. Being For the Benefit Of Mr. Kite! 27. Something (George tribute) 28. Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da 29. Band On the Run 30. Back in the U.S.S.R 31. Let It Be 32. Live And Let Die 33. Hey Jude Encore: 34. Birthday 35. Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band (Reprise) 36. Helter Skelter 37. Golden Slumbers 38. Carry That Weight 39. The End