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Macca's 1993 New World Tour - fan reviews

Post: 1521 of 1592
From: (r.w.cook)
Subject: New World Tour Opener (long)
Keywords: McCartney Macca Beatles
Organization: AT&T
Date: Sat, 17 Apr 1993 07:00:38 GMT
Lines: 200

The intent of this posting is to offer my personal impressions of 
Macca's New World Tour (the opener in Las Vegas, to be precise) and 
to give an accounting of my experiences leading up to the show. 
Please don't flame me for inaccuracies regarding which songs were 
performed, what sequence they were played in, or anything else 
relating to this posting (differences of opinion will be cheerfully 
ignored ;^) ). I didn't take notes during the show - I was too 
caught up in the thing - and my memory is notoriously *bad* when it 
comes to remembering details. Besides, I'm sure *someone* attending 
the Anaheim show (saki, perhaps?) will provide a set list soon.

SPOILER - Press 'N(ext)' now if you don't want to know!

The Sam Boyd Silver Bowl is about 20 minutes southeast of Las 
Vegas, the Sin Capitol of Middle America and home to entirely *too 
much* Elvis memorabilia. Rick Keller (my travel partner) and I 
arrived at the Bowl around 4:30pm, three and a half hours before 
show time. Getting there early was an extremely fortunate move - 
the parking security folks didn't have their act together yet, and 
we were able to take advantage of the general confusion and slipped 
into the employee parking lot, then all the way into the backstage 
area without even being challenged. However, once inside security 
was very tight. The band's "imported" security personnel were 
obviously experienced and constantly challenged people for proper
credentials, which consisted of a plastic laminated tag boasting 
the blue and green New World Tour design, overlayed with a photo of 
the tag holder.

We were bound to get caught. And, since Macca wasn't there yet 
anyway, there was no good reason to risk getting arrested or kicked 
out completely so we "gave ourselves up" to one of the local 
security guards near the tent where Press Credentials were handed 
out. (Oh, to have had 30 seconds inside *there*!!)  When asked how 
the hell we had gotten into the compound, we simply feigned 
ignorance/stupidity (not that big a stretch) and told him
we had been directed into that area by some confused guy at the 
back gate. It was pretty obvious this guy didn't know what was 
going on either, so it didn't take much effort to get him to agree 
the best thing to do with us was to just get us out of his own area 
of responsiblity. We wound up just outside the "inner sanctum", 
but still well within the "secured" area, in a spot set aside for 
the press (who weren't there yet, by the way). Purrfect!

Since we had been seen conversing with Security, who had directed 
us to the press area, people simply assumed we belonged there. 
(Occasionally we were given questioning looks, probably because 
proper credentials weren't visible, but nobody challenged us.) I 
struck up a conversation with the "tour party" person responsible 
for opening the entry gate whenever limos pulled up. It didn't 
take long to discover that Paul and Linda would be arriving at 
approximately 5:45pm for the scheduled 6:00pm sound check **through 
that gate**.

******WARNING:  "OLD FART LIFE EXPERIENCE" Lesson coming up******

The old 1960's slogan "Question Authority" not withstanding, I've 
found that a seemingly common trait of our culture is that most 
people willingly confer authority on those who presume (or pretend) 
to have it. By simply standing by that gate and looking 
"important" (our ages probably helped), pretty soon new arrivals 
were asking us for directions and information! Having overheard 
quite a few conversations between those who *did* know,
most often we had the right answer, or could at least refer them to 
one of the *real* venue personnel. I might hasten to add, never 
once did we lie to anyone. If asked a question that's answer might 
give us away, one of us simply responded with a true albeit 
ambiguous answer, allowing the questioner to make his or her own 
interpretation. Even the Associated Press reporter/photographer 
covering the show talked with us for a good five minutes before 
finally asking a question requiring a direct answer. Hearing our 
story, he seemed impressed that we were able to get as far as we 
had and told us he had assumed we were tour security.

******   END OF LESSON   ******

Rick had his camera ready when Macca's limo pulled up. The rear 
passenger side window was down, Paul sitting in the middle and 
Linda to his left. (I didn't recognize the person by the window - 
he sat back so Paul could lean up to it.)  I yelled "Welcome back 
to the US, Paul!" and stuck out a "thumbs up". Rick snapped some 
photos, Paul reached out his hand and flashed a peace symbol (aka 
Nixon's Victory sign), and the limo pulled into the compound. In 
less than 15 seconds, the whole thing was over and they were gone.

We hung around for the sound check - only about 70 yards from the 
rear of the stage, our location was great for that, too. Unlike 
the soundchecks for the 89-90 tour, the band didn't warm up with 
anything they didn't play later on during the show. (Before Macca 
showed up, the rest of the band fooled around for 30 or so minutes. 
They did some *cool* jazzy tunes as well as some blues. Too bad we 
didn't have a tape recorder...) From what i can recall, the 
soundcheck included:
        Drive My Car
        My Love
        Off the Ground
        Mother Nature's Son
        Looking for Changes
(This is *not* a complete list - they played for 30 minutes or so.)

Afterward, we headed out of the secured area - there was no other 
way to get to our seats without credentials - and back into the 

On with the show!!!

Security was pretty tight at the admission gates. Purses were 
checked, men were frisked, people with cameras and tape recorders 
turned away. We watched for a while, then headed toward the gate 
with the most laid back security. Rick had his 35mm Nikon 
(complete with BIG 70-210 zoom lens) under his coat. We waited 
until the guard was busy with someone else, then slipped right past 
him. He only gave us a quick look and nod.

Right inside the gate were three pallets of tour books similar in 
size to the 89-90 tour books, but in red with a blue and green 
design down the left side. Nobody was handing them out - you just 
grabbed as many as you wanted. Our seats were Section C, Row 12, 
seats 12 and 13. 12th row, center stage - thank you, Fun Club!!

Around 8:15pm (no explanation for the delay) the house lights went 
down and, as with the previous tour, the show began with a brief 
film, displayed on huge screens behind, above and to either side of 
the stage. I *think* the opening track was Help!, but wouldn't 
swear to it. There was lots of applause whenever images of John 
were shown.

Various discussions in this newsgroup have touched on Paul's 
personality, particularly his need to be liked by everyone. 
Recently, someone suggested that Macca was mellowing in his old 
age. I agree with much of that. Even tho' he's often taken non-
conventional positions on various subjects (admission of LSD usage 
in the 60's, public support for the legalization of marijuana, his 
recently found concern for animal rights) he's never been
"in your face" about any of them. Until NOW. Helter Skelter kicks 
in accompanied by some *very* disturbing (to my mind) film. Images 
of kangaroos (I think - they might be large rabbits) being bashed 
with bats, monkees subjected to various forms of torture, and, the 
most disturbing to me personally, a 3-5 second clip of an elephant 
being electrocuted. This is emphatically *NOT* the kind of 
entertainment you would expect from "the loveable one". I think 
Macca has finally found a Cause.

Paul was in fine voice as the band kicked into Drive My Car, the 
same tune they opened with in Australia, I believe. The only 
extemporizing from Paul was to yell "Viva Las Vegas". I wish he'd 
*played* it... After the third song (sorry, I don't recall 2 and 
3), Robbie began playing a beautiful solo on his accoustic guitar 
as roadies set up a snare drum and some stools. The rest of the 
band reappeared with accoustic instruments. An Unplugged set!  
(Damn my wasted brain cells. The only song I remember was Mother 
Nature's Son.)  Macca was *very* into it. You could see he was
enjoying himself. I agree with whoever earlier commented on 
Macca's love for the old songs. There's definitely more feeling 
put into the oldies. No complaints here.

To the best of my recollection, the other songs played (*not* in 
this order) were:

    Lady Madonna
    Looking for Changes
    Off the Ground
    Live and Let Die
    My Love
    Peace in the Neighborhood
    I Saw Her Standing There
    Penny Lane
    Sgt. Pepper
    Paperback Writer
    Let Me Roll It
    Another Day
    Every Night
    Magical Mystery Tour
    Here, There And Everywhere

Highlights of the show:

Reviews of the Australian leg of the tour have described the boom 
(more like a "cherry picker") that was used. During Sgt. Pepper, 
Paul and Robbie stepped onto the approximately 4 ft. by 6 ft. 
platform and were lifted out over the audience.

The old MMT piano "rose up" in front of the stage at Paul's 
command, stopping just to the right of his "position" on the stage. 
A grand piano, also used, was tilted forward so even the close rows 
could see Macca when he sat at it.

The grand finale was Hey Jude. As Rudi "Drudi" Riet already said,
it was a sing-along, with Macca exhorting each side, then the 
middle of the audience to do the "Sha Na Na, Na Na Na Na" bit. 
Then the whole band climbed onto the cherry picker platform, which 
swung all the way out to the 12th row. Linda picked up a red bag 
and began throwing rose petals into the audience as the platform 
moved out to the left, then back to the right side of the stage. 
(I caught a few petals, one of which I folded in my ticket stub and 
put in my wallet.)

Two days later, I'm back in Atlanta but still **Off the Ground**. 

I can't wait for the Atlanta show!

Richard Cook                         expensive:  attmail!rwcook
AT&T IMS/SDO                             cheap:

"We are leading ourselves into the terrible holocaust of a world
where nothing lives wild. Mankind will be in control, but in
control of what?"
                                                      Paul McCartney


Post: 1538 of 1592
From: (r.w.cook)
Subject: Re: New World Tour Opener (long)
Organization: AT&T
Date: Sun, 18 Apr 1993 03:19:24 GMT
Lines: 21

From article , by (Astrid):

>OH MY GOD I'M GONNA DIE! Sounds like you had a GREAT time! May we 
>all be so lucky as to get backstage!

Yeah, we had a great time alright. It was a real adventure.

Please don't misconstrue my posting as an endorsement for this type
of activity.

Like most real adventures it was *unplanned*. We simply "pushed 
the envelope" a bit and got lucky (contrary to my experience with 
the Vegas slot machines...). If people frequently tried to crash 
the shows, I'm not sure what would happen. Again, let me say we 
just "went with the flow" and never once created a scene or 
disruption. Like good backpackers, we "took nothing but 
photographs and left nothing but footprints".

Richard Cook                    expensive:  attmail!rwcook
AT&T IMS/SDO                        cheap:


From: (edward s. chen)
Subject: Paul in Houston
Date: 23 Apr 1993 20:05:28 GMT

Paul McCartney's "New World Tour" rolled into the Astrodome,
Thursday, April 22, 1993 - leaving behind memories to last a
lifetime. The show did not sell out, with approximately 2000
seats still available several hours before showtime, but the
enthusiasm of the crowd made up for the empty seats.

The first, and most noticeable thing about this tour is that while
superficially resembling the 1989-1990 tour, it is subtly very
different - very much changed by the intervening three years.

The tour book is very much "about" both McCartney *and* the 
environment. Along with the usual rock-n-roll pictures and features 
about the band, McCartney has chosen to put cartoons which 
emphasize the problems of our world around us, ending (as usual) on 
a positive note with "Peace" and hope for the future. One 
particularly revealing quote is "I'm not living my life for other 
people. I don't think I ever wanted to be the most beautiful 
thing on the planet." A far cry from those "misty sixties", when
Paul seemingly believed his own press. (The quote is accompanied 
by a marvelous picture of Paul on a horse in a field of flowers)

Along with the tour book, the merchandise also has a decidedly 
ecological tinge. Whereas only one of the shirts last time had an 
ecology-theme (The FoE shirt), this time through there are three 
separate eco-shirts, and the remainder all feature the earth / moon 
logo which is a very poignant reminder of this planet and the state 
its in.

The opening film revisits familar territory, but is done in a 
different way. Along with the familar clips of Shea, Hard Day's 
Night, and Help! are quick snippets of rare and previously unseen 
Beatles footage, surely these clips originated from the 10-part 
Beatles official Beatles documentary currently in progress. 
Further, the footage covering the Seventies was almost exclusively 
home movies of Paul and Linda. The film did not follow the format 
previously reported for other cities, which lends credence to the
idea that there are many segments prepared, and Paul can pick and 
choose how the opening film will flow on any given night. 
However, one segment which seems to be a staple is the rather 
graphic "animal rights" piece. The images are very disturbing 
(eg: film of an elephant being intentionally electrocuted), but 
somehow compelling. The PETA / Greenpeace / FoE slide did get a 
smattering of applause, but that was probably due to the fact that 
the slide signaled the end of the animal rights segment of the 
film. ( A friend commented to me that "The message needs to be 
said, but it's a hell of a way to start off a rock show!"  With 
that statement, I would agree - the segment is about as subtle as 
the lyrics to "Looking for Changes")  The film ends with the three 
letters "N O W", and the man and his troupe enter the stage out of 
a cloud from a smoke machine.

Paul is dressed in the standard pinstripe suit of this tour. The 
band starts with "Drive My Car" - a solid rocker, and a good way to 
begin the concert. The screens are put to good use, flashing and 
scrolling in time to the "Beep Beep, Yeah's". The entire first 
set (with the exception of "Another Day") is filled with tasty 
rockers. As in the other US shows, "Looking For Changes"
replaced "Get Out of My Way", and "Can't Buy Me Love" (the standard 
version, not the "hoedown" version Paul had been playing in the 
warm-ups for this tour) replaced "I Wanna Be Your Man."  The 
audience was very receptive, and a roar went through the building 
with "Looking For Changes" - a pleasant surprise for myself, and 
Paul also seemed a bit shocked by the response. (My friend
*hates* LfC, but still got into it. McCartney has sped up the 
tempo a bit, changing the lukewarm song on "Off the Ground" into a 
marvelous rocker that really cooks.)

A guitar solo follows from Robbie (very impressive - a nice bridge 
between the first two parts of the show. The first time on tour 
McIntosh has had a chance to ham it up all by himself)   Once the 
solo finishes, the band is huddled together center-stage, and the 
second "Unplugged" set begins. Paul has removed his jacket by this 
point, revealing a very sharp looking silver vest with the letters 
of the alphabet emblazoned across the the back in blocks. The
biggest moment of this set for me was "Hope of Deliverance."  While 
a good song on record, live the song sounds virtually ecumenical. 
The rehearsal time spent since the original "Unplugged" special is 
obvious. Every song the two shows have in common sounds 
infinitely better now. (and the "Unplugged" performances were 
pretty good in their own right). The still photographs
used for "Michelle" evoked the mood of lovers on the Seine 
perfectly, and Paul's voice continued to roll strong and smooth. 
Unfortunately, "Biker Like an Icon" falls a bit flat here - he 
should probably switch "HoD" and "Biker."

The third and final set features Paul at the piano. As he did in 
the "Up Close" special, he slips in an oblique negative reference 
to Axl's cover of the tune (Paul must have something of a love / 
hate relationship with the G'nR version, as it was part of music 
piped over the PA before the show). The piano set also features the 
return of Paul's "magical piano", this time mounted on tracks so it 
appears to float in the air (as Paul calls to it, like a boy to his 
dog). "Magical Mystery Tour" was an unusual choice for McCartney, 
but nonetheless manages to work well.

The show proper ends with four Beatles songs. Perhaps the most 
astounding thing is how good "Paperback Writer" sounds live. Just 
as Harrison managed to salvage "If I Needed Someone" live, 
McCartney manages to make one forget the multitudes of inaudible, 
usually out-of-tune versions of the song the Beatles attempted on 
their final world tour all those years ago. The set
proper then closes out with three Pepper-era tunes, leaving the 
crowd awash in the psychedelia and pleasant memories of a time gone 

Paul closes the show with perhaps the three strongest songs from 
the last tour, "Band on the Run", "I Saw Her Standing There", and 
the transcendental "Hey Jude." During "Hey Jude", the band mounts 
the riser and rides over the first few rows, while the audience 
does the "na, na, na's". Linda throws fairy dust (disguised as 
confetti and biodegradable streamers) over the audience, bringing 
the show to a fitting, and rather awe-inspiring conclusion.


A few short takes on the show, and the ephemera surrounding it:

I hate to brag, but I was in fifth row seats! Absolutely marvelous.

In addition to seeing all the set-up, I was fortunate enough to see
the McCartney children wandering around, and going backstage. The
thrill of being able to genuinely look into the man's eyes as he 
played and sang made for a memory to last a lifetime.

A large part of the money spent on this tour was actually spent on 
the sound. The Astrodome has perhaps the worst sound of any large 
stadium venue (it was *not* built to hold concerts), yet the word 
(even from people in the upper-decks) was that the sound system 
worked very well, providing a great listening experience to all 
around. Kudos to McCartney for putting extra money into the show, 
rather than spending it on more lights and flash.

The band sounds marvelous. After 4+ years of playing together, 
they are a very tight unit. Further, Blair Cunningham's drumming 
complements the band better than Chris Whitten's did. (Whitten is 
also a very good drummer, but Whitten seemed to want a share of the 
spotlight, while Cunningham is content to sit back and keep out of 
the spotlight)  The "Unplugged" experience and the "secret" club 
dates have done much to mold this group of musicians together into 
a band. Particularly nice is Robbie's guitar work, which
ranges from perfect copies of classic George Harrison soloes to 
nice extrapolations of same, to completely original licks that 
somehow still evoke memories. Also good was Paul's voice, which 
kept strong and steady throughout the evening, faltering only once 
or twice - and at that for only a few notes.

McCartney managed to work the crowd better than any showman  I've 
ever seen. The ill-timed segment in the opening film 
notwithstanding, Paul was able to manipulate the feelings and 
emotions of the crowd absolutely brilliantly. Despite the venue not 
being sold out, the audience was loud and boisterous throughout 
most of the evening. Paul seemed to notice, as his usual
between-songs patter seemed heartfelt. The recognition and 
applause for the "Off the Ground" material particularly seemed to 
please him.

The video screens were seemingly used much less this time through. 
However, when they were used, they complemented the music rather 
than detracting from it. In fact, the sparsity of the use of the 
video tended to focus the attention on the performers - probably 
the desired effect.

Both of the local reviewers (yes, Claudia Perry, the woman who 
wrote the single nastiest review of "Off the Ground") wrote glowing 
reviews of the show. Impressed the heck out of me.

Finally, a word or two on the hype surrounding the tour. The tour 
coverage has largely consisted of the "Former Beatle in concert", 
and "30-something and 40-somethings go to a rock show" variety. I 
supposed it's a message about the appeal of McCartney, but it is 
still a bit distressing. I saw much of the same coverage with 
Ringo's most recent tour. McCartney is still a vibrant artist, 
producing new material. Further, not all his fans are of
the baby-boom era. While such generalizations are perhaps 
inevitable, they do tend to grate on the nerves (well, the nerves 
of this second-generation fan, at least) after being repeated so 
many times. I was also a bit annoyed by the repeated references 
the media made to a "Beatles reunion.", and the fact that they blew 
an off-hand comment (ie: "I don't know about the future,
this could be my last tour, but maybe not") entirely out of 
proportion, into, "Paul McCartney, on his final world tour..."

My opinion:  See the show. You will enjoy yourself.


From: dave@drseus.uucp (David Wicks)
Subject: McCartney in Houston
Date: Fri, 23 Apr 1993 21:05:53 GMT

I and 40,000 others saw Paul McCartney in the Astrodome last
evening (4/22). I'd like to offer some observations.

First, Paul's voice sounded terrific. When I saw him in Dallas
during his last tour, I thought that age had caught up with him.
His voice just couldn't handle the more demanding songs, especially
"Got to Get You Into My Life."  He was 100% better in the Dome.
They did not perform "Got to. . .", but when he lit into "Can't
Buy Me Love," it sounded almost as good as the original. It
occurred to me that during the 1989-90 tour, Mac and group hit
several continents before getting to the U.S., and it must have
worn down his voice considerably. This time, I saw him earlier
in the tour. It made a big difference.

We heard some unexpected tunes from Paul:  A soft version of
"Rockin' at Midnight", a shortened "Let Me Roll It", an exciting
"Paperback Writer", and the from-left-field "Fixing a Hole."  My
ratings, respectively:  OK (but why bother), very good, excellent,
excellent. I never thought I'd hear "Fixing a Hole" live.

The crowd registered polite applause for new stuff, was energized
by old stuff (surprise, surprise). When he started into "I Saw
Her Standing There," the place went berserk. Definitely the
highlight of the evening. Except maybe the pyrotechnic "Live and
Let Die," which was also very exciting. There's something about
explosions. . . . Again, his voice was just great.

They played for 2 1/2 hours, starting with "Drive My Car," and
ending with "Hey Jude."

I had a damn fine time.


From: as298@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Stephen E. McGinnis)
Subject: Paul in Houston. ;-)
Date: 24 Apr 1993 18:37:07 GMT

Like I said after the concert...I have waited to see Paul since
I first saw the boys on Ed Sullivan in 1964 and fell in love with
the music from then on...I can now die a happy man. ;-) The concert
was absolutely the best concert I have ever seen in my life. I won
tickets from our local radio station here in College Station and
the seats were great. Not as great as Mr. Chen's, but great none
the less. We were sitting about 1/3 of the way back on the floor
and to the right of the stage. Next to the sound and lighting 
boards. Perfect sound, perfect sight, perfect performance. The set 
list was exactly the same as the Anaheim set list (I kept track) 
and the music was absolutely marvelous. I talked to one of the crew 
before the concert and got to find out what he thought about 
working for the Mac's and he said that he had never worked for 
anyone who cared more for the people who worked for him and the 
people who came to see him than Paul. He said that while they were 
in Australia, Paul purchased everyone on the tour a hat and sun 
screen so that they would not burn. He also said that Paul and 
Linda as well as the rest of the band are the best people just to 
know that he has ever worked for. He said that most performers
that hire the company that he works for to construct the stages 
could care less about them and just get us on. Paul doesn't do 
that. He wants to make sure that all of the people on the tour are 
being taken care of well and makes sure that they are. And he has 
started enjoying the food finally. ;-) Yes, they cater their own 
food for themselves and the crew and it is vegie. ;-) I had the 
greatest of times and I doubt that any concert I will go to again 
will be as good as the one Thursday night. Go, go, go if you can. 
See Paul where ever he is going to be close to you. If you don't 
you will miss something very special.



From: (Elizabeth Henry CIRT-IRC)
Subject: Paul in Las Cruces
Date: 24 Apr 1993 21:02:56 GMT

Paul McCartney performed in New Mexico for the first time last
Tuesday night and it was a joyous experience. At the last minute
I got my hands on tickets for the eighth row, center stage. I
never dreamed I would ever be ten yards away from any former
Beatle watching him perform songs I have been listening to almost
all my life.

During the warm-up film people were cheering with excitement and
anticipation. The rare footage of the Beatles as well as Paul
and Linda lent to the feeling of having a privileged view of some
private moments of these very publically known individuals. When
the band hit the stage with "Drive my Car" I couldn't believe my
eyes. There in front of me was the man who wrote the songs of my
childhood. I was five years old when my mother bought me "She
loves you" on 45 (black Swan label-still have it). It was a
twentynine year trek from that moment to this one.

Having a birds-eye veiw of the man I was able to gauge for myself
what type of a person he was. What I saw was a sincere man whose
lifes work brought him joy-he was "in the flow" as he sang and in
turn responded to the audiance. He was also vulnerable. When he
introduced a new song off his latest album, one could see a 
fleeting glimse of fear in his eyes, fear of rejection. I cheered 
the loudest for these tunes in encouragement. But he was also
comfortable playing the Beatles material. You can see that he
had come to terms with the fact that he may never pen songs as
inspired as the ones he wrote for the Beatles. It was like a
master tailor pulling out a wardrob he put together twentyfive
years ago and proudly wearing it around town. He enjoyed playing
"Penny lane" and "Magical Mystery Tour" as much as we enjoyed
hearing them.

The show was powerful, the songs were fresh, no need for
interpretive flurishes, the tour was young, and the band sounded
great. It felt like watching a band in a small club-that give
and take that goes on between musician and performer. After
all these years of a one sided relationship (me listening to his
recorded music) it was truly a "cosmic" experience to be giving
him direct feedback. So much so that I was hoarse the next day.
I can go on and on...the world became that much smaller for me
after Tuesday night. Thanks Paul for stopping by...don't forget
to come back to New Mexico!


Post: 1776 of 1813
Subject: Paulie in New Mexico
Summary: Paulie in Las Cruces, NM
Organization: Amherst College
X-Newsreader: TIN [version 1.1 PL7]
Date: Tue, 27 Apr 1993 02:09:53 GMT
Lines: 69

        Okay, so here I am, finally getting around to posting 
something about the Paul McCartney concert that took place nearly a 
week ago on Tuesday, April 20th, at Aggie Memorial Stadium in Las 
Cruces, NM. I have had many people write and request information 
about the show and more notable about whether or not I actually did 
get to go backstage and meet Macca. (For those of you who may not 
recall or didn't catch it, I was the obnoxious one touting my luck 
on getting a hold of second-row seats as well as backstage passes).

        First of all, YES, I *DID* GET TO GO BACKSTAGE, and 
secondly, YES, I *DID* GET TO MEET PAUL MCCARTNEY. Sorry if I have 
managed to make anyone sad or upset at that fact, but I want to let 
everyone who is interested know of my experiences and try to get 
the feeling. I also had the opportunity to meet Mrs. Linda 
McCartney, Robbie McIntosh, Hamish Stuart, and Wix Wickens (my 
favorite in the band).

        Needless to say, this was the greatest experience of my 
life. Born too late to see the Beatles in their prime (or at all, 
rather, since my birthday fell on April 17, 1974), this made up for 
all of that, even the fact that my "favorite Beatle" is John, whom 
I will never get to meet in the context of my visit with Paul. 
Anyway, here's the story:

        I arrived at the venue at 12:30 p.m., a *little* early for 
the show but having enough time to check out the place, meet other 
die-hard Beatle/Macca fans, and see Paul and the gang arrive in 
limos at about 4:00 p.m. I got a GREAT photo of Paul waving out the 
window, Linda a little behind him, looking absolutely happy and 
excited. It was very fortunate that I was able to catch him there 
because Security people were being absolute dicks (please excuse my 
college-afflicted vocabulary) about fans waiting for him outside 
the venue, a problem I never encountered waiting for him in 1989 in 
Tempe, AZ. They kept moving us across the street and up the street
and away from the intersection where he would turn into the gates, 
yet Macca upstaged them all by in fact arriving in such a way so 
that he covered the entire circumference of the stadium and gave 
all those faithfully waiting the chance to wave and scream.

        Things were running a bit late and we ended up in our seats 
at about 6:45 p.m. (forty-five minutes off-schedule), and that is 
where I met the woman who gave me my passes. I was FREAKING out 
when we were let in late because I was sure that she would never 
wait for us to arrive. However, thanks to her good heart and 
kindness, I gratefully (and very tearfully, let me assure you) 
received my backstage pass, proceeded to the gate in front
of the stage, and announced to the security guard (in a failing 
voice), "I have backstage passes to see Mr. McCartney." He let me 
in graciously and I floated back to meet one of my greatest idols.

        Paul was wandering around backstage, surprisingly enough, 
strumming a guitar and joking with the staff about how he had 
mismatched socks on earlier in the day (it's TRUE!). My mother and 
her sister accompanied me (they had been true Beatle FREAKS when 
they were younger, even going so far as to form a group of their 
own called "The Beatlettes" and performing for servicemen at Fort 
Bliss in our hometown of El Paso, Tx.--my mom was Paul and my aunt, 
John...), and I'm thankful for that because they pretty much kept 
me sane during this time. We went up to Paul, who was wearing
the cutest, most wonderful smile on his face, and handed him our 
various photos, scrapbooks, programs, and pieces of paper to be 
autographed by him. I could NOT utter a single word for what seemed 
the longest time, until finally I managed to choke out one phrase I 
will be regretting for the rest of my life, which was, "Mr. 
McCartney, I *love* you and always will and you TOUCHED John Lennon 
and oh, thank you sir, thank you!" He laughed in the friendliest 
way, PUT HIS HAND ON MY SHOULDER, and replied, "No, Lisa [he
knew this after reading my scrapbook cover--what a true 
gentleman!], thank YOU, and I'm sure that John thanks you, too."  
Then he signed a few of our things, chatted with my mother and aunt 
for a while (don't even ask me to recall what he said--I was in 
HEAVEN), shook our hands, and moved on to the next group of fans 
waiting to meet him. At this point, Linda had found us
and took over, with Robbie, Wix and Hamish not far behind. (Blair, 
for some odd reason, was not anywhere to be found...) Mary 
McCartney was flitting around busily as well, and I think I managed 
to tell her how great her family was and that I was so very glad to 
meet her.

        The only problem I had with sitting so close to the stage 
was the fact that there were times when I could not see Paul at 
*all*. These times included his performances on "the magic piano", 
during which he played several of my all-time favorites songs 
(aren't they ALL my favorites, though?  :D ) like "Magical Mystery 
Tour", "The Long and Winding Road", and alas, "Let It Be." This 
indeed was quite distressing, but not too disturbing overall,
considering the fact that for the rest of the show, Paul and the 
other members of the band were in full view.

        The press in New Mexico and El Paso, TX especially (El Paso 
being the closest large city in TX to Las Cruces) were completely 
unable to handle a concert of this magnitude and importance. For 
weeks before the show, all any critic or reporter did was bring out 
every single negative aspect of the show and tour and Paul and 
Linda and how they were old and John was dead and who were the 
Beatles anyway--it was all quite upsetting and RATHER un-
called for. People in El Paso complained because the concert was 
not held there, completely forgetting the fact that they themselves 
earlier had provided enough seeming disinterest to drive Paul away 
from that city to Las Cruces (who are usually committed and 
interested enough to bring better performers to concert, anyway).  
The press people, probably extremely jealous of the fact that they 
could not get good seats or something, ragged endlessly and
in fact even savagely on how Paul was charging way too much for 
tickets and how he was the greediest performer on Earth, providing 
no lasting benefit for nor influence on humanity, blah blah blah. 
HOWEVER, I am very glad to say that the fans who showed up truly 
made the event one to remember for a lifetime, and believe me--
those press people really ate their words.

        In the opinion of this young adult/teen-in-her-last-year, 
this was the greatest experience of my life. Throughout the show, 
I made eye contact with Robbie, Hamish, Paul and Linda, all of whom 
remembered me from our meeting and were kind and amused enough to 
wink, wave, laugh, and point at me all through the concert. Paul 
sure must have been having major flashbacks to his days of touring 
in '64 & '65 just looking at me screaming and crying (I was quite 
out of my mind with joy, let me assure you). The tour is very
different from the '88-'89 circuit, which makes it all the more
enticing to attend a show this time. Stay somewhere between rows 
1-15 if you can, definitely in a center section (I know this may be 
the impossible for many of you, but it is helpful advice if you can 
swing it), and be ready for many annoying people crossing in front 
of you and trying to swipe your seats. And above all, just get 
ready to have the time of your life.

Lisa :)

"This is my story, both humble and true
 Tear it to pieces and mend it with glue."  --John Lennon more tidbits and thrilling details re: 
The New World Tour 1992-93!!!

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