Thursday 5 April 2012

James McCartney at the Cavern

Review by Donna Jackson

On Tuesday April 4, a McCartney once again took to the stage in the Cavern Club's Live Lounge.

James McCartney stood in the same spot where his dad performed in 1999, and it was clear that the weight of his musical legacy was lying very heavily on his shoulders.  Early in the performance he mentioned that his dad had played on the very same stage, and at the end, after thanking Liverpool and the Cavern for making him so welcome, he also thanked the Beatles.

James was clearly nervous, and although it didn't affect the quality of the music being played, he never seemed to relax until the very last song.  James switched effortlessly between guitar and piano but at one point admitted to the crowd that he was really worried about making a mistake or forgetting the words.  I'm sure I wasn't the only woman in the Cavern at that point who desperately wanted to give him a hug and tell him that everything was fine.  A couple of songs later, James said that he was starting to enjoy himself and I hope that was true.  He only managed a couple of brief smiles during the evening, which is a shame; he has a very sweet and gentle smile and it lit up his whole face!

He said it was a privilege to play the Cavern, and it was a privilege to witness the performance. James has an impossible task; he can never live up to his dad's legacy. But he chose to come to his dad's home town and play the club that is the most famous club in the world largely because of his dad. I commend his courage, and I applaud his talent. I really enjoyed the show tonight, and I can only hope that James enjoyed it as much as I did!

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