McCartney thrills fans with Hamburg gig
Paul McCartney has kicked off his first European tour in five years in Hamburg, the German city where he first exploded on to the pop scene with the Beatles nearly five decades ago.
The sold-out, nearly three-hour show took in Fab Four favourites, hits from his later band Wings, solo efforts and a few new numbers and drew a warm, enthusiastic response from an audience spanning three generations.
"I'm so happy to be back in Hamburg where it all began 49 years ago," 67-year-old McCartney, one of the two surviving Beatles, told cheering fans in Germany on Wednesday.
Showing off a renowned knack for thrilling a crowd and remarkable endurance - he took no breaks during the marathon set, not even for a sip of water - McCartney offered moving tributes to his late wife Linda and the two dead Beatles John Lennon and George Harrison.
"I wrote this song for Linda but tonight it's for all lovers," he said, again in German using cue cards, before launching into his ballad My Love.
He later played his 2001 single Here Today dedicated to Lennon, led the crowd in a rousing version of Lennon's Give Peace a Chance and did a sped-up rendition of Harrison's Something on a ukulele the singer gave him before he died of lung cancer in 2001.
McCartney's Good Evening Europe tour will see seven stops in five countries including a Christmas gig in London on December 22.
It follows sold-out concerts at US stadiums earlier this year and comes ahead of the release of a live album, Good Evening New York City, recorded at the city's former Shea Stadium, where the Beatles played to an ecstatic crowd in 1965.
The northern German port city of Hamburg nurtured the Beatles as young performers in its seedy red-light district, long before they would become superstars, and now hosts a Beatlemania museum.
The show was McCartney's first in Hamburg since 2003 and came ahead of the 50th anniversary of the first Beatles gig in Germany when the unknown band from the English city of Liverpool played at a moth-eaten strip joint called the Indra Club on August 17, 1960.http://news.ninemsn.com.au/entertainment/979255/mccartney-thrills-fans-with-hamburg-gig