Please don’t sing that song, that we all can sing along

Some memories of the Paul McCartney concert yesterday at Ernst-Happel-Stadion in Vienna. It’s his Out-There-Tour and it sure was a blast, of some kind. But I don’t need to see the biggest Beatles-Cover-Band featuring Paul McCartney. I don’t have the urgent want to sing “Ob-La-Di Ob-La-Da” or “Hey Jude” in a drunken beer-mood. I want the real thing. I want to see a brilliant musician at work. Not an entertainer, celebrating his Greatest Hits over and over again. There should be more to it. And – I guess you can ask every real Beatles fan – there is.

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Passion.

passion

I designed this poster for a concert of some dear friends in Germany. Made mostly by treating paper really bad and a copy machine.

Music & Words.

Last monday my boyfriend and I had the great chance to see Patti Smith at the Burgtheater in Vienna. First of all – this is a top location for a Rock concert and I love the special mood that arises from old and dignified walls when they open their doors for something a little different from time to time.

Some years ago (I must have been 16 back then…) I had the pleasure to see R.E.M. at the Vienna Staatsoper – it was beyond words and still my favourite concert. Back then I saw Patti Smith for the first time, not quite sure who she was. She supported R.E.M. on only two or three songs but she left a lasting impression on me. And I decided to learn more about here.

Sadely I acutally never really did, apart from listening to her now and then… there were other things for me at that time, my head and heart was all stuck in to Beatles, R.E.M., Green Day, Tocotronic or Bob Dylan – what is, when I look back now, a quite strange mixture of taste in music. But it fitted me fine back then and it always stayed with me and made me a quite wide ranged adult music lover. One that seems now ready for digging his head into her songs and work.

So – 12 years later my boyfriend, who is just reading Patti Smith’s new book “Just Kids”, took me out to see this grande dame of Punk and Rock again. And we had a great evening of music and energy and deep thankfullness that someone like Patti Smith is out there, still living her fascinating way of life. She had a quite awfull cold and drank tea all the time. Sometimes she had to start songs again because of her bad voice and now and then her voice broke a little more than usual… But it didn’t make it a bad concert – on the contrary it seemed to benefit it: Patti Smith’s whole performance is, for me, about imperfections and rawness and the fact that she was not on top of her form just made her more tangible and true.

I think Patti Smith is one of the strongest and at the same time most vulnerable women I ever saw: She takes the whole room over and shouts with her wonderfull voice for freedom and love. But she also stands there, suddenly seeming a little bit smaller and thinner than she is, crying for her dead friends and lovers. And all this makes her so special to me and to so many people. She was such a important voice of her generation and I hope she also is for ours. We couldn’t do better…