Paul McCartney will turn 80 years old in less than a month. He doesn’t need to tour. He could easily get away with a 90-minute concert that rolls through the hits and fans would leave satisfied. If he simply phoned it in, maybe people wouldn’t complain. After all, he’s a living legend.
Paul McCartney does none of those things. His Winston-Salem concert on Saturday night included a 36-song setlist, plenty of storytelling and an artist that continues to put on concerts that far exceed expectations.
While his voice may have sounded a bit shaky at times, he hit the high notes with aplomb and provided plenty of genuine smiles to the crowd and his bandmates. And while I sometimes heard a mild quiver in his vocals during a few full band selections, it held steady during solo performances, including “Blackbird.”
He paid tribute to John and George, and a video of the Beatles during “Get Back” was provided by Peter Jackson, director of the recent documentary. Jackson also offered a track of John Lennon’s isolated vocals so Paul could once again duet with his old friend on the first song of the encore, “I’ve Got a Feeling.”
His setlist veered between solo material, Wings classics and Beatles favorites. For all 36 songs he played, there were likely 36 others fans wanted to hear — but it’s hard to complain when there is such an extensive catalog of great music. And the goosebump-inducing singalongs by a stadium full of people are hard to beat.
There were stories of Liverpool and Jimi Hendrix, about his daughter and his first band, The Quarrymen. Frankly, I could have listened to McCartney tell tales all night, with or without musical accompaniment. When he played in Charlotte 12 years ago, I never thought he’d be touring to this day. For those in attendance at Truist Field on Saturday night, we’re all thankful he still is.
Can’t Buy Me Love
Got to Get You Into My Life
Come On to Me
Let Me Roll It
Let ‘Em In
Nineteen Hundred and Eighty-Five
Maybe I’m Amazed
We Can Work It Out
In Spite of All the Danger
Love Me Do
Being for the Benefit of Mr. Kite!
You Never Give Me Your Money
She Came in Through the Bathroom Window
Band on the Run
Let It Be
Live and Let Die
I’ve Got a Feeling
Carry That Weight