Monday, July 25, 2011

Family Concert Review: Paul McCartney in Detroit

Baby, I'm Amazed at the performance Paul McCartney put on at Comerica Park in Detroit Sunday night.  For nearly 3 HOURS, the Beatles LEGEND entertained a huge crowd, including three generations of my family, and single-handedly held off a thunderstorm.  McCartney's talent as a musician is phenomenal, and he seemed to truly enjoy the evening.  How can he be 69 years old and still look as good as he does and maintain the stamina that it takes to rule the world?  I got tired just watching him.

I must say that the pace of the show was perfect.  Sir Paul has found a way to integrate some relevant and honest interaction with the crowd, and not lose any momentum between the 35 or so songs he and the band played. (I actually lost count!)  My wife thought the show was over five separate times, but it just kept rolling.  One word comes to mind: comfortable.  It was the most comfortable I have ever been at at rock concert and I give Macca credit for this unique experience.
I took my parents, my wife, and my kids to this show and I'm so glad that I did.  Paul McCartney may be the ONLY performer that can captivate an audience of any age. My parents loved it and my Mom, in particular, appreciated the clarity of the vocals "even on the songs she didn't know!"  Of course they knew most of them, including The Long and Winding Road and Hey Jude.  Both of them have seen the Rolling Stones in concert, and this show topped those by far for them.  McCartney certainly doesn't move like Mick Jagger, but he holds the crowd in the palm of his hand and controls them equally as well.

As far as the kids go, overall they enjoyed it.  The familiarity of the venue certainly helped.  My 13 year old, who rarely shows great emotion, smiled and told me he loved it.  The spectacle of the stage, the pyro, and the fantastic video displays banking the sides of the stage sucked him in.  I was 15 when live music took a stranglehold on me, we'll see if it does the same for him over the next few years.  The Beatles Rockband has strangely and wonderfully provided musical education in our house, and my daughter sang along with the familiar old hits.  Especially Paperback Writer, Drive My Car, All My Loving, and Back in The U.S.S.R.  Funny though, after a ripping version of Band On The Run, a song she had never heard before, she asked if the chorus (Band On The Run, Band On The Run) was "Red Rubber Duck, Red Rubber Duck."  So much for the clarity of the vocals!

As much as I wanted it to be perfect for all seven of us, my 9 year old succumbed to the late Sunday night start and crashed about half way through.  Even with the M&M's, Cracker Jacks, Popcorn, Pretzels, Nachos, and a Sierra Mist (or because of it all) he was asleep in my wife's lap(!) and snoozed right by Live and Let Die, complete with flames and fireworks! 
Even the hard hitting Helter Skelter couldn't wake him.  Oh well, it was past his bedtime.  Sorry Paul, don't take it personally.

Congratulations, Paul McCartney.  What a show!  I never stopped smiling.  Nothing offensive, no obscene gestures, and no cursing.  The first F-Bomb came on the way to the car, courtesy of one of Detroit's finest panhandlers. Thanks, buddy.  Of course there were a few concertgoers that overindulged in alcohol, but I felt perfectly safe and secure having my family at this show.  Comfortable. 

It was a privilege and an honor to witness one of the most famous people on the planet, performing at such a high level of professionalism.  McCartney could blow any other act off the stage, regardless of age.  WOW.
What an inspiration.  Maybe I've spoiled my kids...this one will be tough to beat.

And as far as this die-hard Rolling Stones fan goes...I publicly admit that Paul McCartney won me over last night.  It only took about 4 songs into the set when Jet took off and grabbed me.  A few guitar changes later, an excellent Jimi Hendrix solo clinched it.  Well done.


  1. Kurt- I agree with your review. In our area we had 3 generations of fans that were all dancing and having a great time. I am biased as a huge Beatles fan, but I think he really ROCKED last night- I mean he played the 'hard' hits more than anything. When he played "All My Loving" our area went crazy like it was the newest, greatest hit. It was awesome, I wish I would have taken my parents.

  2. That's amazing you got to see him person! I saw him at the half time of the 2005 Super Bowl but it was too short!


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