In which I get to see an amazing concert

Paul McCartney at The Hollywood Bowl (with Set List)

Last night I got to fulfill a lifelong dream of mine: I saw Paul McCartney live in concert.

The show was at the Hollywood Bowl, which is just about the best venue for a show imaginable. For days the news forecast lots of rain, but the skies were crisp and clear all evening (although it was bitterly cold). Our seats were almost exactly in the center of the amphitheater. There was no opening act; Paul came onstage about five minutes after eight o’clock and played until ten thirty.

He opened with a medley of the Wings classics Rock Show and Jet, kicked into The Beatles classic All My Loving, and then furiously managed to play almost every one of the hits he’s had in his 40+ year career, including a couple of songs from The Fireman. During the climax of Live and Let Die there were outrageous pyrotechnic explosions and an incredible fireworks display. (He played the first half of Something on a ukulele before switching to his electric guitar, which was awesome.) Paul must have played six different guitars — plus a mandolin — in addition to the ukulele; and he did at least a half-dozen of the songs on piano.

I took a bunch of photos with my iPhone — and even a video of Hey Jude — but throughout the performance there was a spectacular light show (with movies and archival Beatles photographs) projected onto the bowl behind the band, so most of my shots are just big blurs.

It was absolutely one of the best concerts I’ve ever seen.

Here’s the set list:

  1. Rock Show / Jet (medley)
  2. All My Loving
  3. Letting Go
  4. Drive My Car
  5. Highway
  6. Let Me Roll It
  7. The Long and Winding Road
  8. Nineteen Hundred and Eighty-Five
  9. Let ‘Em In
  10. My Love
  11. I’ve Just Seen a Face
  12. And I Love Her
  13. Blackbird
  14. Here Today
  15. Dance Tonight
  16. Mrs. Vanderbilt
  17. Eleanor Rigby
  18. Something
  19. Sing the Changes
  20. Band on the Run
  21. Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da
  22. Back in the U.S.S.R.
  23. I’ve Got a Feeling
  24. Paperback Writer
  25. A Day in the Life / Give Peace a Chance (medley)
  26. Let It Be
  27. Live and Let Die
  28. Hey Jude (encore break)
  29. Day Tripper
  30. Lady Madonna
  31. Get Back (encore break)
  32. Yesterday
  33. Helter Skelter
  34. Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band (reprise)
  35. The End

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