Manchester • Wednesday, May 16, 1973

ConcertBy Wings • Part of the Wings 1973 UK Tour
See all concerts in United Kingdom on the map
United Kingdom
Hard Rock Concert Theatre

Spread the love! If you like what you are seeing, share it on social networks and let others know about The Paul McCartney Project.


WINGS by Barry Coleman ONCE UPON A TIME in the near-by ciy of Liverpool, lived a moderate bassist with a reasonable voice. By chance he fell in with a band of rockers and together they played for peanuts in a foreign land. In time they became very famous and were commanded to play before the Queen. They also wrote songs and otherwise quite sensible people said that they were as good as Beethoven. Indeed, many of them were truly wonderful songs and what was then called pop was never again quite the same. Eventually, the bassist, who had learned how to make young ladies scream by fluttering his eyelashes, grew weary, quarrelled with his friends and retired to California and Scotland where he grew unusual plants. Any resemblance between the hero of the fairv story and the Paul McCartney who led Wings at the Hardrock, Manchester, on Wednesday night is surely coincidental. McCartney is not exactly busking to cinema queues or selling bootlaces, but the musical come-down is almost as tragic. He treated us to a banal string of Beatles oldies, other people’s oldies, and the odd Wings original, including their current top twenty ditty, ” My Love.” Were it not for its author, this would be just another bad song, oozing cheap sentimentality. As it is, it comes as a firm statement that McCartney has moved out of the area of worthwhile music Given the scope of their material, the band, with the exception of one member, played well enough, but certainly no better than scores of others. They got a good reception from a full auditorium, but after their encore of “Long Tall Sally” (their one impressive number) they admitted failure. Linda McCartney, photographer, sang in a painfully flat howl. Her piano playing was crudely inept and she was frequently defeated by the simple tambourine. No amount of kisses from the prince will turn her into a musician, and her ‘ unnecessary and ungainly presence on the stage amounts almost to a contempt for the paying public. And you’d be lucky to get away with that for long, even in a fairy story.

From The Guardian, May 18, 1973

The next morning, we left for Manchester.  It turned out to be the longest, dragged out ride of the whole trip.  Normally a 6-hour ride took 8 hours because the engine broke down!  We were sure that we were going to miss the concert.  When we finally did get there, it was about a half-hour before the show.  We jumped in a taxi and speeded off to the Manchester Hard Rock.  While we sat and worried, I happened to notice a white bus.  It was Valient Silverline.  “Valient Silverline????!!!!!”  A second later I looked up and there was Paul leaning his head against the window as if he were bored stiff.  He had on a black and red checkered jacket.  It all happened so fast, I couldn’t open my mouth. I just grabbed Ann’s arm and said, “Do you know I just saw Paul!?!?!” and started muttering it out.

He was going in the opposite direction, so we assumed the taxi driver was jipping us.  We merged onto a main and sure enough, just in front of us was the bus.  The taxi driver was a maniac and proceeded to pass the bus.  We were dying.  It was like something you see in the movies.  We passed the bus and Paul was resting his head against the seat, with his arms folded, looking straight ahead and sulking.  It was weird that he was just as bored with the rotten traveling as we were! 

We beat him to the theatre, and just got done paying the taxi when the bus pulled in.  He sat up and looked at all the people in disbelief.  When we got in the theatre, we discovered that we had the rottenest seats in the house.  Sure, they were close to the stage, but there were stacks of amplifiers blocking our view.  We couldn’t believe the theatre had enough nerve to sell those seats.  In any case, I was definitely spoiled by that time, and it was in the front or nothing for me.  so I just went and stood right in front of the stage.  The night before, his press agent had given us some “Red Rose Speedway” buttons (like Paul always wore) and stickers, and I just made like I belonged there.  I’ll tell you, a Pentax does wonders also!  You’d be surprised what a 35mm camera can do for you.  Sarah and Ann stayed more over to the left — which was good also. 

This was the crappiest audience yet.  I was the only one clapping, and I turned around and looked at the people like “aren’t you gonna get up?”  By the end, a lot did, but they were really a dull audience.  Just sat there and gaped at him.  There was a girl standing next to me, and this big roadie came along and threw her down and told her if she got up again, they throw her f’ing so and so out.  Well, I figured I was next, but they looked at me and smiled.  I couldn’t figure that out.  But who cares. […]

From the Summer 1973 issue of McCartney Lovers and Friends – From Meet the Beatles for Real: Manchester & Liverpool Wings 1973


I was lucky enough to see Wings at the Hardrock on the 17th, what a fantastic group they are! I find it hard to explain the terrific atmosphere which was created. Wings rocked all the way and it was really great. All the numbers sounded superb, ‘Maybe I’m Amazed’ was really amazing. When everyone had HI HI HI blasting out the roof nearly came off! Everyone was stamping all the way. ’’Hope you come back soon, ’cos we’re waiting for more, thanks for a really great time”

Alan Fielding

From Wings Fun Club newsletter #3

…too much. I stood there with my mouth open, there was actually Paul, only a few yards away. I had waited ten years to see him, and finally made it, not only did I see the concert but…

There I was in Piccadilly, when who should walk by, but Denny Seiwell. He went into a cafe. I plucked up the courage and went in after him, and actually spoke to him. Then, ended up with having a meal with him. Later on, I went into the hotel they were staying at, and who should I see, but Denny Laine. It was worth travelling from Ireland for, but hope against hope, I didn’t just manage to bump into Paul. So near, yet so far away. Tell you the truth I don’t think my poor heart would actually have stood up to that. I was excited enough, talking to people that actually came into contact with Paul.

Billy Carrol

From Wings Fun Club newsletter #4

Last updated on August 18, 2022

Hard Rock Concert Theatre

This was the 1st concert played at Hard Rock Concert Theatre.

A total of 2 concerts have been played there • 1973May 16thMay 17th

Too bad, there is no song listed for this concert. If you've been there, help us fill the set list for this concert by writing a comment!

Going further

Wings Live - On tour in the 70s

This is the first detailed study of Paul McCartney's Wings on tour in the 1970s. It covers every single concert from the University Tour of 1972, ending with the abandoned tour of Japan in January 1980. A wide variety of primary sources have been consulted, including all available audio and video recordings; press reviews; fan recollections; newspaper reports and tour programmes.

Shop on Amazon


Have you spotted an error on the page? Do you want to suggest new content? Or do you simply want to leave a comment ? Please use the form below!

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *