On November 14th, the legendary Sir Paul McCartney (my favorite Beatle) played a three hour set filled with Beatles hits, Wings classics, touching tributes, and all around amazingness at Houston’s Minute Maid Park. I’ve loved The Beatles my whole life and it doesn’t get much better than being in the presence of Paul McCartney.
This was my second time seeing Paul McCartney (first time was 2009 in the Cowboys stadium). The Script (?!) opened that show in Arlington and it was totally unnecessary. A former Beatle can stand alone. Luckily, this time around there wasn’t an opener so it wasn’t long before the notes of “Magical Mystery Tour” triggered a ballpark full of screams. I was ridiculously excited.
The show started with a nice mix of songs from all points in McCartney’s career, including “Sing The Changes” from his 2008 album with The Fireman. Immediately after that song was “The Night Before,” a random cut off of Help! and my FAVORITE Beatles song (and all-time fave). I’d snuck a peek at the setlist from his previous show in St. Louis so I knew hearing the song was a possibility but I was ecstatic when he started singing. That’s certainly not a song expected to be in the setlist, since it was never a hit. I can check “see favorite Beatle perform favorite song” off my bucket list.
The show included other Beatles favorites of mine including “Got To Get You Into My Life,” “Paperback Writer,” “Day Tripper,” and “A Day In The Life” as well as McCartney standards like “Band On The Run” and “Maybe I’m Amazed.” After each song he would hold up his guitar (or whatever instrument he was playing at the moment), bow, and take it all in. But each time it would give me a little panic that the show was over.
While McCartney’s show isn’t a small production, the songs weren’t accompanied by much more than lights and colorful visualizations (which often included “stock photos” of flowers, the world, and other cheesy graphics). Then, the opening notes of “Live and Let Die” began and everything kicked in to high gear…including pyro and fireworks. It was incredible. The night finally ended with the beautiful medley of “Golden Slumbers,” “Carry That Weight,” and “The End” from Abbey Road. The full setlist can be viewed here.
A nice older gentleman sitting nearby told my friend and I a story about the time The Beatles played the Houston Coliseum in 1965. Upon seeing that the ticket prices were $6.50, he refused to pay such an exorbitant amount and opted to stand outside while his friends went in. He said he never forgave himself. At least he got a chance to see Paul McCartney. I’m glad I didn’t let things like ticket prices and travel stop me. Worth it.
– Submitted by Jessica Reed, Social Media