Last night's sold-out show at Staples Center was a homecoming for Paul McCartney, whose current U.S. tour ends tonight. He and Heather Mills own a big mansion in Pasadena, and during the show he mentioned a Mexican restaurant there. It's a long way from McCartney's first Los Angeles visit forty-one years ago. The Beatles played the Hollywood Bowl on August 23, 1964, though their first performance might be considered the press conference a couple of hours earlier. They mugged for reporters and photogs at the Cinnamon Cinder, a nightclub owned by KRLA deejay Bob Eubanks (the Rose Parade announcer) at 11345 Ventura Boulevard in Studio City. It was supposed to be secret, but word got out. "More than 400 teenagers staged a mass attack," the Valley Times reported.
That was so long ago that the Vietnam War began that month with the Tonkin Gulf resolution. Watts had yet to explode. Sam Yorty was just getting started as mayor of Los Angeles. There was no art museum on Wilshire or skyscrapers on Bunker Hill. The Angels actually did play in Los Angeles.
Tuesday was a school night, but I was OK with letting my daughter forget for a few hours about physics and pre-calculus. As an infant she played google eyes with Ringo at Fred Segal. I've watched her stand through a Tom LaBonge speech to help dedicate a plaque to George in Griffith Park, and hold back tears for John outside the Dakota on Central Park West. Seeing Paul in person closed a circle for her.
Program: $25. Tour t-shirt: $35. Floor tickets: Don't ask.
Excitement on face of sixteen-year-old Beatles aficionado: Priceless.