Take it from a guy who’s been there – you don’t want to miss McCartney

🕐 6 min read

Thank goodness for those moments in life where others keep us from making a mistake, or in my case repeating a mistake.

If you’re thinking about going to see Paul McCartney in concert at Dickies Arena on May 17 and don’t yet have a ticket, what are you waiting for? Trust me, if you love great performances it will be one of the best musical purchases you will ever make.

I understand your hesitation, though, I truly do. I was there previously. Fortunately, as I said, I was bailed out of making the same mistake twice.

Years ago, when McCartney played at Jerry World, aka AT&T Stadium, a now former coworker asked if I would like to go see the concert with him. I passed, not really giving it a second thought.

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One of the reasons I gave: tickets were too expensive. Now, I’ve paid tremendous money for concert tickets, such as the two times I’ve seen Elton John (and again when I will go see him in September at the giant George Foreman Grill, aka Globe Life Field).

For some reason that I now realize bordered on insanity, seeing McCartney in concert wasn’t at the top of my list. I’m not even sure it was in the middle of my list. Of course, I’ve always realized his greatness but while I liked his music and that of the Beatles, I just never saw myself listening for a couple hours and spending all that money.

Then came the spring of 2019. Sir Paul came to Globe Life Park (not to be confused with the aforementioned new home of the Texas Rangers). My best friend managed to find incredibly inexpensive tickets – I mean cheaper than a couple folks dining out at Golden Corral; cheaper than a Yugo (Google it, kids).

I didn’t ask where he got them, but Mark – while not quite Abe Lincoln – is an honest guy so I was satisfied it was all legal. I said, what the heck!

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It turned out to be simply one of the greatest concerts I’ve ever seen, and I’ve seen a lot. From a plethora of performances at the legendary Red Rocks in Colorado to doing a live radio remote broadcast in 1984 at the Cotton Bowl as part of Bruce Springsteen’s “Born in the USA Tour,” I am proud of my concert resume.

Thank goodness I was rescued from repeating my earlier mistake. McCartney’s show was nothing short of awesome from start to finish.

Whether he was playing Band On the Run or Jet from his Wings days. or Back in the U.S.S.R. and Helter Skelter from his glory times with the Beatles, the joint was rocking in a way that would make the late Stevie Ray Vaughn his proudest. When he slowed down for Yesterday or Let it Be there was complete silence as the audience became mesmerized in the moment.

The memory of every cellphone in the darkened stadium lighting up when he sang Hey Jude still gives me chills. (Remember when we lit up concert venues with cigarette lighters – how did we ever get away with that fire hazard?)

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This concert was in a large stadium that had over 50,000 in attendance. Dickies Arena holds less than a third of that, so I can’t wait to see what the show will be like in a much more intimate setting – though my imagination is already running so fast I’m getting exhausted trying to rein it in.

Will you get another chance to see McCartney? Not on this tour, unless you do so in another state; Fort Worth is his only Texas stop.

Also, he will be 80 this summer. And while he does appear to be in better shape than a lot of folks half his age, well, why push your luck?

Sure, he could tour until he’s 90, but he could also decide it’s time to do a little more fishing.

Are there better things to spend your money on? Well, I wouldn’t skip paying your light bill or car payment to go, if that’s what you’re asking. But if you have money to spend on entertainment, a Paul McCartney concert is about as good as it gets.

Plus, to use a cliché, we only live once. Enjoy it to the fullest. Someone I know hardly leaves his house because, as he says, everything he’d like to see he can see on TV.

Wrong. Nothing tops the experience of having been there, whether it’s New York City, Paris, the Rocky Mountains, a Broadway play or one of your favorite musicians in concert. But, hey, when he decides to stay home that means there’s a seat at the real action for me.

Fort Worth, I hope you realize just how special this is and what a compliment one of the greatest musicians of all time is paying you. He hasn’t played Cowtown since 1976, when he and Wings came to the Tarrant County Convention Center.

He could have chosen Dallas and the American Airlines Center for this year’s 13-city Got Back tour. I’ve seen concerts there, and it’s a fine place to see one. Certainly, he could have gone to Jerry World or Globe Life Park.

But Sir Paul chose Fort Worth and Dickies Arena. That’s a salute not only to the growing popularity of Fort Worth – growing being a key word as we near a million in population – but also to the fantastic job the city and Dickies Arena are doing to make the once languid Panther City an entertainment hotspot.

There are other great concerts and events coming to Dickies this year. But with all due respect, McCartney is the crown jewel in the schedule.

And this time my wife, the lovely Junell, will be accompanying me. She passed on her chance to see McCartney in 2019, and being the smart one in the family the chances that she would make the same mistake twice are about the same Paris Hilton’s chances of winning an acting Oscar.

So, yes, she will be alongside me as McCartney rocks Dickies Arena like it has not been rocked in its short history, and perhaps like it never will be again. She’ll get the T-shirt, I’ll get a kiss for having done something right one of maybe half a dozen times this year (trust me, she keeps count), and it will go down as another memorable moment in our lives together.

Maybe we’ll see you there. You can thank me for steering you to a night you won’t forget.

Rick Mauch writes regularly for the Fort Worth Business Press, contributing articles on a variety of subjects ranging from small business to entertainment to sports.

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