- BC Place
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From CTV News Vancouver, July 7, 2019:
At the age of 77, I will be happy if I can get out of bed in the morning. Paul McCartney, on the other hand, is playing three-hour shows to fifty thousand people.
At BC Place Saturday night, Macca pulled out plenty from his catalogue of more than 60 years’ worth of music with songs ranging from the earliest days of The Quarrymen, to Wings, to his latest work from his 2018 album Egypt Station, from which the song “Fuh You” is a standout.
The first half of the show was a steady mix of work from throughout McCartney’s career, but the Beatles-heavy last half really was what everyone came out for.
There were long stints of just Sir Paul on his own with an acoustic guitar or at the piano, interspersed with stories about Jimi Hendrix, Russian officers, and writing songs with John Lennon.
He also took time to dedicate songs to his wife Nancy, as well as to Cape Breton’s Emma Stevens for her rendition of “Blackbird” sung in Mi’kmaq.
Aside from a somewhat out-of-place pyrotechnics display during “Live and Let Die,” this show was near-perfect.
From Cape Breton Post, July 7, 2019:
Emma Stevens’ viral hit version of Paul McCartney’s song Blackbird prompted the award-winning musician to invite her to his concert in Vancouver on July 6. As his guest, Stevens met McCartney backstage and received a shout out praising her for her version which is sung in Mi’kmaq.
“I told her, her version is so beautiful, I hope I can sing it as well,” he told the crowd of cheering fans.
Stevens’ Mi’kmaq version of Blackbird was recorded and filmed at Allison Bernard Memorial High School, for International Year of Indigenous Languages (a United Nations observance for 2019 which focuses on raising awareness about Native languages). […]
From paulmccartney.com, August 9, 2019:
It had been three years since Paul’s last visit to Vancouver, a 2016 two-night stand at Rogers Arena during the One On One Tour—48 hours that included not only the Delta Police Pipe Band (re)joining Paul and the band both nights for ‘Mull of Kintyre’, but also a surprise guest turn from a visiting Jimmy Fallon who belted out ‘ Saw Her Standing There’ during night two’s encore. All told, the two “intimate” arena gigs were “just as epic as the last time around…” said the VANCOUVER SUN, that “last time around” being Paul’s 2012 return to Vancouver that ended a 48-year stretch since he’d last stepped onto a stage in British Columbia’s biggest city (1964 when The Beatles played their first ever Canadian show).
So here we were, anticipating Paul’s return to BC Place, the same 60,000+ capacity stadium he’d played in 2012 on the On The Run Tour. He’d done Empire Stadium with The Beatles in 1964, gone bigger by a factor of three at BC Place in 2012, and done two “intimate” (air quotes necessary) Rogers Arena, making this his fifth Vancouver performance since 1964—practically a residency!
Rolling into the loading dock of BC Place means taking a right turn at the working personnel entrance to Rogers Arena—the arena literally standing feet (meters?) from the monolithic BC Place Stadium felt virtually connected, as if a residual energy trail from those 2012-2016 shows was awaiting Paul’s arrival on this night.
And arrive in style he did, opening, as in 2016, with ‘A Hard Day’s Night’ and then taking the tens of thousands in attendance to new and unfamiliar territory alike: Performing ‘Got To Get You Into My Life’ live in Vancouver for the very first time, ‘All My Loving’ (coincidentally the third song played that night in 1964 as well as this night in Vancouver), ‘Dance Tonight’ and ‘I’ve Just Seen A Face’ receiving their first Vancouver outings since 2012, ‘Letting Go’ reappearing from 2016 but this time marking the Hot City Horns’ local debut—given the reaction to this one, second number ‘Junior’s Farm’, ‘Nineteen Hundred and Eighty-Five’ among others, the VANCOUVER SUN noted that it would be a night that “gave flight to McCartney’s Wings era and these proved some of the evening’s peaks.”
An undeniable highlight for many if not most of the 60,000+ in attendance was the evening’s rendition of ‘Blackbird’. A consistent show stopper every time Paul gives the band a breather and mounts the levitating platform at the stage’s edge, this particular ‘Blackbird’ was prefaced by a shout out to Nova Scotia singer Emma Stevens, the teenage musician whose version of the song in the Mi’kmaq language, recorded to commemorate the United Nations’ International Year of Indigenous Languages, had become a surprise viral hit. As indelible as so many memories of Paul McCartney shows can be, one can hardly imagine a more memorable moment than Paul describing their rendition of the 1968 Beatles classic as “beautiful.”
A baker’s dozen more tunes including the Vancouver debut of ‘Fuh You’—its new ritual of crowds illuminating stadiums with phone lights having obviously crossed the border into British Columbia—a thunderous encore concluding with ‘Golden Slumbers’/’Carry That Weight’/’The End’ and Paul’s second BC Place was officially in the books—which would include the aforementioned VANCOUVER SUN marveling “there is no one else who can regale arenas with tales of George Harrison’s prowess on the ukulele before launching into ‘Something’ or still have ‘Let It Be,’ ‘Hey Jude,’ ‘Band on the Run,’ ‘Helter Skelter’ and more to come at the two-hour mark in the concert.”By Paul’s publicist, Steve Martin
Last updated on August 14, 2019
Setlist for the concert