Forty years disappeared in a flash of polyester and bright lights Saturday night at the Bromeley Family Theater at the University of Pittsburgh at Bradford.
The McCartney Years transported the crowd musically back to 1973 with some of the greatest hits from Paul McCartney and Wings, and even threw in some favorites from his “other” band — The Beatles.
The show, part of the Bradford Creative and Performing Arts Center (BCPAC) season, was a non-stop juggernaut of all that makes Paul McCartney a living legend and an institution in entertainment. Yuri Pool as Paul McCartney didn’t miss a note — or a jump, fist pump, head bob or dance step.
Starting off with “Jet,” and moving quickly to “Let Me Roll It” and “Band on the Run,” the group held the audience mesmerized right from the start.
Pool sang lead vocals, played bass, guitar and piano.
Laura Gagnon was Linda McCartney, David Usselman was Denny Laine, Braden DeCooman was Jimmy McCullough, and Dean McKey was Joe English. Evan Berndt also played keyboards and sang backing vocals.
“It’s my first time here in Bradford,” Pool said. “I think we’re going to have a really good time though.”
“Silly Love Songs” came next, with Pool showing why The McCartney Years has been hailed as “the best on the scene today,” dancing, singing and keeping the audience on the edge of their seats.
“Now we’ll go back in time a bit to when I was touring with three other young lads from Liverpool,” Pool said before launching into “Got to Get You Into My Life” followed by “The Long and Winding Road.”
Pausing for a moment at the piano, he said, “If you feel a little cold out there and want a little exercise, you can shake your bum. This is a song to shake your bum to,” before launching into “Listen to What the Man Said.”
If only every person could be as happy at their job as Pool obviously is, the world would be a better place. His joy for the music was infectious, spreading into the crowd throughout the show. Nearing the end of the show came the perennial favorite “Hey Jude.”
The entire crowd down to a person was singing along at the chorus — “na na na na na na na, na na na na, Hey Jude.” Pool would direct the women to sing, then the men, then each part of the audience — and he jumped off the stage and ran through the crowd.
Songs like “Yesterday” and “Back in the USSR” were welcomed as heartily as “Maybe I’m Amazed” and “Live and Let Die.”
The audience was on its feet, begging for more at the end of the show.
There will be a bit of a wait for the next BCPAC show, though, with Jason Michael Carroll scheduled to perform at 7:30 p.m. Jan. 27 at the Bromeley Theater.