Thursday, 25th 2008 will remain a special day in my life. After blah blah years and decades, I had an opportunity to fulfill a life-long dream. I saw Paul McCartney, live, on stage, singing.
Sure, I was so far back that he was only a dot on the eye. Sure, he was missing three other members of the Fab 4. And, he was past 64. It did not matter for one second of my 2 hour and 20 minute joy ride.
The press had made much that the Beatles had been banned from appearing in Israel way back in 1965. Was the cancellation due to a clash between two local impressarios? Did the government of the day really believe that the young crooners would corrupt the youth? Or was it that the country was so strapped for foreign currency reserves and could not afford the entertainment, that the cancellation was based on a made up excuse?
More relevant is what this concert means to Israel today? For me this is simple: For all Macca’s visit to Bethlehem and his wishing the audience “Ramadan Karim”, he gave Israel what it has longed for – a kosher certificate.
He is so big that no longer can any artist find an excuse not to visit. Finally and utterly – Israel is on the map in the world of music and live concerts. The country offers performers first class facilities. In return, they should be here to honour their fans.
One irony: Maca constantly used the theme of giving peace a chance. great, the region needs it. And yet, for me the best song of the night was “Live And Let Die” withe explosive guitar solos and effects. Smile; it’s the Middle East.