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REPORTER'S NOTEBOOK

Find him in `Oldies' file

June 29, 2007|Randy Lewis | Times Staff Writer

Observations from Paul McCartney's concert Wednesday at Amoeba Music in Hollywood:

Best Hollywood Karmic Moment: Michael Eisner walking past scores of scruffy music journalists and other record industry grunts to find the end of the VIP line in front of the store.

What's Up With That Musical Choice 1: One straw that helped break the bassist's back with the Beatles was Phil Spector's heavily orchestrated arrangement of "The Long and Winding Road," later stripped from that track on the revisionist "Let It Be ... Naked" album in 2003. So when Paul plays it in concert today, why does he use ... the Spector arrangement?

Trickiest Sight Line: The one from McCartney's spot on stage across the room to the giant John Lennon poster for the song "Borrowed Time."

Sweetest Moment: McCartney singing "Here Today," his tribute to Lennon, fully choked up.

Biggest Difference Between Amoeba and a Rock Club: The sign hanging over McCartney's head touting "Oldies CDs."

Best Musical Homage: Changing the "doo-doo-doo-doo" background vocals in "Back in the U.S.S.R." to "bow-bow-bow-bow," just like on "Help Me Rhonda" from the Beach Boys, one of the original recording's key influences.

Happiest Fan: Tough call, possibly Amoeba's beaming co-founder, Marc Weinstein.

What's Up With That Musical Choice 2: In the month that marks the 40th anniversary of the release of "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band," the number of songs from "Sgt. Pepper" in McCartney's Amoeba set list? Zero.

Forward Thinking: The week after McCartney turned 65, the number of quips about old age: Zero.

Best Line From an Unsung New Song: From "Vintage Clothes," off "Memory Almost Full": "Don't live in the past."

randy.lewis@latimes.com

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