I didn't know it at the time, but this could the last live event I see in 2020. It was early in the Auckland Arts Festival, itself was closed mid-way due to COVID-19 restrictions.
They specifically announced "The artists request no photos or recording during the performance" so here's my only one from before. It was annoying to see a few people still trying, seemingly oblivious to the phone screen-glow which made it obvious, but the event staff were quick to stamp it out.
The performance was superb.
- Pat Metheny | On a myriad of guitars (of course) - acoustic, electric & synth, including the 4 neck 42 string Pikasso
- Antonio Sanchez | Drums (as was in Wellington 2006)
- Linda May Han Oh | Acoustic and electric bass
- Gwilym Simcock | Piano and digital keyboards
The set (list below) was a mix of oldies (both solo and group), a John Schofield/PM cover, one track from the new album "From This Place" and a fantastic medley finish, before an encore.
Pat said very little; brief intro of the band and 'glad to be back, it has been too long' pretty much covered it. I was a little surprised he didn't mention or dedicate anything to Lyle; but maybe more respectful to his current collaborators not to. Given his public statements prior the music on the night said enough.
I was surprised by the audience demographic, mostly my age or older. The old town hall 'Great Hall' was full and a nice venue. Big enough for a crowd, small enough to feel connected even though was I was at the far end up on the circle (Row D 26 for future ref). There was no video or screen (what looks like one in the photo is a curtain over the pipe organ) but it wasn't needed. The excellent acoustics coped well with everything from a delicate solo guitar to full on electro-synth-acoustic.
My last pre-COVID-19 live show was a memorable one. Pat went on to perform in Australia, then had to abandon a South American Tour (rescheduled for 2021).
Set list from Setlist.fm
- Pikasso Guitar Intro (Pat Metheny Unity Group cover)
- So May it Secretly Begin
- Bright Size Life
- Have You Heard (Pat Metheny Group)
- Always and Forever
- Slip Away
- The Red One (John Scofield & Pat Metheny cover)
- Farmer's Trust (Pat Metheny Group song)
- Tell Her You Saw Me
- Everything Explained (From This Place)
- Unity Village
- Phase Dance (Pat Metheny Group song)
- Question & Answer
- Better Days Ahead (Pat Metheny Group song)
- Medley: Minuano (Six Eight) / Praise / As It Is / The Way Up / September Fifteenth / The Sun in Montreal / Omaha Celebration / Antonia / Chris / Last Train Home
- Encore: Song for Bilbao (Pat Metheny Group)
PAT METHENY, ONE OF THE WORLD’S GREATEST GUITARISTS, IS BACK IN AOTEAROA FOR A GLORIOUS NIGHT OF JAZZ REPERTOIRE ALONGSIDE AN INCREDIBLE TRIO OF MUSICIANS.
American jazz maestro Pat Metheny’s illustrious career spans over four decades, more than 40 full-length recordings, and 20 Grammy Awards. No less than a living legend, his trademark improvisational playing style is the envy of guitarists everywhere and music to the ears of fans globally.
With only one concert in New Zealand previously (in 2006), Metheny is promising a special live performance where anything goes – brand new music, all-time classics and deep cuts from his extensive back catalogue. Metheny’s long-time drummer Antonio Sanchez, Malaysian-Australian bassist Linda May Han Oh and British pianist Gwilym Simcock will not only play support but also share the spotlight as tremendous musicians in their own right.
Pat Metheny on stage at 8.00pm