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Guest Post: “Who Cares about Paul McCartney’s Voice, What About His Guests?”

Who Cares about Paul McCartney’s Voice, What About His Guests?

by Brody Duggson

Paul McCartney has been receiving flack about his singing voice during his current “One on One” tour.  

Some fans, mainly those who spend too much time on the internet, think his advanced age (he’s 75) has diminished his vocal prowess and made him too reliant on his backing band.

A few want Sir Paul to lower the keys of his songs.  The tune that appears to draw the most ire is “Maybe I’m Amazed.”

I think they’re being a little harsh.  Granted, no one has a higher bar than Paul McCartney, but when compared to most of today’s music, there’s no comparison.  An off-key Macca is still better than a current singer on key. And all you need are a pair of Macca tickets to hear for yourself!

There is reason to critique Paul on his current tour, but it’s not his singing.  It’s his choice of guests.

New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski, Tonight Show host Jimmy Fallon, and Barbadian singer Rihanna have all joined him on stage.  

If you’re going to deride a former Beatle don’t do it over his voice.  Do it for having to share his sound system with Rihanna.  

Yes, I know he recorded “FourFiveSeconds” with Rihanna, performed with her at the 57th Annual Grammy Awards, and she has sold more than 230 million records, but I can’t name one of her songs (besides “FourFiveSeconds”), nor do I ever want to.

And what about Jimmy Fallon?  Jimmy Fallon!  Jimmy Fallon shared a stage with the guy who conceived Sgt. Pepper.

Thankfully Rob Gronkowski just danced to “Helter Skelter.”  Great job on not giving him a tambourine or something like that.  Now, Gronk is a great football player, but he’s the Tom Arnold of sports celebrities.  

Gronkowski being on the same stage as McCartney is like McCartney lining up in the slot during a Patriots game.

What’s next?  Is Macca going to perform “Things We Said Today” with Jared Kushner, “Band on the Run” with Sarah Silverman?

If you want to share the stage with Paul McCartney you should have to meet a certain high artistic standard.  Shouldn’t we, as a society, have stringent safeguards to protect our cultural icons from publicly performing with mediocrity?  I think so.

Let’s hope that during his next round of concert dates, Macca’s guests are of a higher caliber.  

McCartney returns to his “One on One” tour on Sept. 11 with the first of two shows at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey.

He travels to New York City for two concerts at Madison Square Garden (Sept. 15 and 17) and two at Barclays Center (Sept. 19 and 21).

He remains in New York State for a show at the Carrier Dome in Syracuse on Sept. 23 and two at NYCB LIVE’s Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Uniondale on Sept. 26 and 27.

On Oct. 1 and 2, Sir Paul concludes the North American leg of his 2017 “One on One” tour with two performances at the Little Caesars Arena in Detroit, Michigan.

His latest setlist contains some deep cuts, although a deep cup for McCartney is a hit for most artists: “Here Today,” “Temporary Secretary,” and “Nineteen Hundred and Eighty-Five.”

He ends his shows with “Golden Slumbers,” “Carry That Weight,” and “The End.”

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Concert Review: The Mersey Beatles w/ Julia Baird at Sellersville Theater

Mersey Beatles

How lucky are we?  An old friend of my husband’s invited us to join him and his wife to see The Mersey Beatles at the Sellersville Theater.  AND Julia Baird (John Lennon’s half sister) was there to introduce the band, sell her book “Imagine This” and do a meet & greet!  I reviewed Julia’s book last year and gave it four Beetles.  You can read that review here.  Also, I did talk with Julia about the book I’m reading for next weeks review…but you’ll have to wait until next week to find out her opinion.

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The Mersey Beatles are just another Beatles tribute band.  These guys all are childhood friend who were born in Liverpool.  Sound familiar?  After realizing that they were never going to make it big as band and that they always got a great response when they covered songs by the Fab Four, they decided to create their own tribute band in 1999.  In 2002, they became the resident Beatles Tribute band at the Cavern Club in Liverpool and remained so for 10 years!

WP_20160512_019[1]So what makes this band stand out?  They do go through 3 costume changes with the early suits, then Sgt. Pepper’s and ending with Abbey Road dress.  They bring just enough on stage banter in their natural Scouse accents without over doing it and losing the audience in some silly over rehearsed skit.  At the same time, they will talk with the audience (they thanked the people who yelled out that they were killing it!) and they take requests.  And some of their harmonies are really going to wow you!

All in all, this was a great experience.  And I’m glad I got to see this band for the debut American tour.  Though they’re are probably boarding a plane right now to return to Liverpool, they will be returning WITH JULIA to the U.S. this July for a tour of the midwest!  And for that reason…

I rate this concert, 4 out of 4 Beetles!

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Concert Review: Brian Wilson at the Tropicana, Atlantic City 10/24/2015

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Continuing with on my Beach Boys kick….Last night, my husband Craig and I had the great pleasure of seeing former Beach Boy Brian Wilson in concert in Atlantic City, NJ. This is one of the geniuses of the rock world that I’m glad I got to see before it was too late.

How could I say anything bad about this show when Brian opened the show with my favorite Beach Boys’ song, Heroes and Villains. And there I was, wondering if they’d even play it. I actually remember where I was the very first time I heard that song in the mid 80s! (intersection of Rt. 401 and Phoenixville Pike in Malvern, PA. I called the radio station when I got home to find out the name of the song and who sung it. The DJ told me the wrong song, despite my objections, so it took me weeks to track it down.)

Anyway, I digress.

This is a must see show for anyone (notice I didn’t say Beach Boys or Beatles fans?). Even though, Brian remains seated at the piano throughout the show, managing to do only some hand-dancing during several songs, the sound and the rest of the band make this a great show that had the fans dancing in the aisles. Al Jardine is in top form, and his son Matt Jardine sings lead on several songs, letting us all know he has followed well in his father’s sandy footsteps. The only part of the show I could have done without was Blondie Chaplin’s stage antics as he ran about the stage as if he was at a Stones show. But hey, if the rest of the band could tolerate it, who am I to criticize.

Check out Brian Wilson‘s website for the cities and dates on the rest of his tour. You’ll be glad you did! And for that reason…

I rate this concert: 4 out of 4 Beetles!

***After thoughts: I decided to add a little bit more to this review after someone commented on the video from last night’s show of “Heroes and Villains” that I posted on Facebook. Brian’s voice is not at it’s best, but the man has been through a lot in his 73 years on this planet and still suffers the effects of years of dealing with his own health issues. If you want an explanation of his issues, watch the movie “Love & Mercy“. At the same time, Paul McCartney isn’t at his vocal best anymore and after seeing him three times in the past 25 years, I’ve decided not to see him live anymore. I’d rather remember his shows from when Linda was still with him. This was my first (and probably last) time ever seeing Brian Wilson in concert, but I am oh-so glad that I made the trip and spent the money to be able to see a musical genius that, in my opinion, is equal to the likes of the Beatles.

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