Saturday, November 13, 2010

McCartney rocks Buenos Aires

The old boy can still get down. And he can do it two nights running. Not something that can be said for every 68 year old man.

Paul McCartney and his band flew into Buenos Aires last Monday from neighbouring Brazil, where he’d played to 66,000 fans in Porto Alegre, some of whom are rumoured to have queued for a week to get in.

After hanging out with some cows and other farm animals for a couple of days in the Buenos Aires countryside, Paul strutted onto the stage on Wednesday evening. It had been seventeen years since the most Beatle-ish ex Beatle last performed in Argentina, and the River Plate stadium was jam-packed to the brim and overflowing with McCartney mania.

Generally the music that Argentines most love to strut their stuff to is Cumbia. Originating in Colombia's Caribbean region, the sound is salsa-ish with African style drums, guitars and keyboards stimulating the hips of listeners, who dance rhythmically like only Latinos can, leaving an Englishman to feel like a deaf and constipated robot while he's teased with comments like 'Hey Ingles, you look like you're doing the dishes while stamping on cockroaches. Lube up your hips boy.'
But whether they are swinging one another round and moving their limbs in impossibly musical ways, or tapping their feet to the greats like Queen or Europe, Argentines love music and most of the country has a finely tuned appreciative ear for British rock.

McCartney feels that.
‘I love South American audiences,’ he said ‘I always think I have Latin blood because I connect so strongly with their love of music, and their love of rhythm and their love of melody.”

He would certainly have enjoyed the boost to his bank balance. Tickets in Argentina were the most expensive on the current tour, ($US100- $US1500) and after selling out within hours of being on sale, Paul rolled up his socks, sucked on a few orange slices, and agreed to get back out there the following night for an equally sold out concert.

And according to reports, oh what a concert it was.

45,000 screaming fans jumped, shouted and sang along in Argentine accents to their favourite Beatles and Wings tunes. McCartney joked with them wearing the number ten of Maradona and proclaiming, ‘I am Diego,’ while wowing them with all the classics, from Something, in tribute to George Harrison to Let it Be and Sergeant Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club band.  

According to reports, the band was flawless, while McCartney was his energetic, charismatic and Scouse self. His Spanish wasn't half bad either.

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