This weekend, Beatles tribute Yesterday and Today comes to the Marcus Center for the Performing Arts and I got a chance to talk to the groupâ€™s Billy McGuigan for a story that runs later this week.
Iâ€™m concurrently reading volume one of Mark Lewisohnâ€™s projected trilogy, "All These Years." Itâ€™s a bit of a commitment, because it clocks in at darn near 1,000 pages. But, thatâ€™s OK, Iâ€™ve been a Beatles fan longer than Iâ€™ve been a fan of anything else (except the Mets), so itâ€™s a subject Iâ€™m keen on.
I havenâ€™t seen many of the Beatles tributes, though I was lucky enough to see the original cast of Beatlemania on Broadway when I was 10 (thanks Mom!) and to spend some time with Milwaukeeâ€™s Reed Kailing, who was the understudy when I saw the show and later stepped into the full-time McCartney role.
I took one of my kids to see the new Beatlemania (with my mom, of course, to keep the streak alive) a few years ago, too.Â
What sets Yesterday and Today apart is that they donâ€™t bother with wigs and costumes and fake Liverpudlian accents. And, they take requests. In fact, audience requests are the sole source for the groupâ€™s set lists.
That got me thinking about which songs Iâ€™d request, when I go. Hereâ€™s my not-so-shortlist. I stopped myself at a dozen (in alphabetical order), or Iâ€™d just keep going. Post yours using the talkback feature below...
- "All Together Now," because I can remember dancing around like a crazy kid to it for my grandfather.
- "And Your Bird Can Sing," because, well, the guitars, right?
- "Anna (Go To Him)," if covers are on tap, because itâ€™s such a brilliant Lennon vocal.
- "Devil in Her Heart," again, a cover, this time because of Georgeâ€™s double-tracked vocal performance and the sound of the guitars.
- "Hey Bulldog," because.
- "Iâ€™m Only Sleeping," one of the best songs from my favorite era ("Rubber Soul" and "Revolver")
- "I Need You," for its great melody, the volume-controlled guitar, the cowbell, the strumming acoustic and the stellar middle eight.
- "She Said She Said," because, really, I would list most of "Revolver."
- "Strawberry Fields Forever," which tore open a new hole; the Mellotron, the fantastic drumming and and and...
- "Thereâ€™s a Place," which has a fabulous melody and a nice group vocal, showcasing the Beatlesâ€™ harmony skills.
- "Things We Said Today," because, well, have you heard it? I mean, yes.
- "The Word," as a representative of "Rubber Soul," which like "Revolver" is full of worthy tunes.
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