October 28, 2000 - Italy
That´s Where I Belong
The band (not all members are present at all shows)
Vincent Nguini - Guitar
Fans who attended this show
This was the third time that Paul Simon played in Italy, after 1987 and 1991. The Palavobis as very crowdy, but not sell out, and the people was about 3,500 - 4,000. At a quarter past nine he was on stage and received a very warm welcome from a not so young audience. The setlist was the same as the last London show, without ´Scarborough Fair´, and closing with ´Still Crazy After All These Years´ followed by ´The Boxer´. He was backed by an excellent band, as everyone who attended the show may testify. New songs and old songs were played in very interesting sequence, and the show had no low points. Highlights of the concerts were, of course, the old ones, and not only the Simon and Garfunkel era tunes, but also his solo works. Paul Simon offered new arrangements of ´Kodachrome´ and ´I Am A Rock´, that were very appreciated by the fans. Among the songs from ´You´re The One´ had a great applause ´Darling Lorraine´ and ´Hurricane Eye´. The security was not tight inside, and many photos were shot. I saw no tape recorders or cameras taken off. Seems that they were more worried that people stayed sitting during the concert, and - yes, it´s so - even before the concert. There were some guys that moved here and there trying to get everyone to his place, asking to sit also before Paul Simon came on stage. Very strange. All of this was absolutely unuseful when at the end of ´Diamonds´ Paul started ´You Can Call Me All´, and invited the people to get up Everyone was up, and from the balconies people rushed down to the floor and got right in front of the stage. They tried to quiet the fans, but it was unsuccessful. The concert went to end with people just at the feet of the stage. Paul Simon seemed to enjoyed how the crowd welcomed his comeback in Italy, and though he was not talking between the songs, at the end of ´Late In The Evening´ he said ´Italian are a good lookin´ people´. The show grew up in emotion at every minute, and some songs were sung with the singalong of the people. And not only the refrain of ´The Boxer´, but also some parts of ´American Tune´, of ´Still Crazy After All These Years´ and all through ´Bridge Over Troubled Water´ and ´The Boxer´. At the end of the show Paul Simon thanked many times, and he was sure he performed a great show, and gave great sounds to the people that came down and saw him. The show was about two hours and fifteen minutes long, he played one song after the other, and took no intermissions. This gave the concert a very good feeling, and that´s another reason of the ever growing joy. After the concert I went to the backstage and tried to meet the man, together with my wife Cristina, my brother Dario and my friend Roberto. We waited some minutes near a couple of cars where he surely would´ve been in (one was a black limousine), but we were asked by the security to go away. We were five or six guys, not a very numbered crowd, but they accepted no replies, and dared to say that ´the musician wants so´. I replied that it was untrue, because I had no reason to believe that Paul Simon refused to meet his fans at his shows, as was written in these reports by the guys who met him after the London shows, if I remember well. So, we went out, and stayed just outside the gates where the cars had to leave the concert hall. After fifteen minutes two black cars went out, the limousine following the other one. We all tried to look inside the limousine, and in that moment I heard my wife crying ´There he is, there he is´. He was out of his car (that was not the limousine) and moved just to us. We get closer to him, and asked if he could sign. He said ´yes´, he was very relaxed, though a little tired, and signed the ticket that my brother gave him. I passed him the inside booklet of Simon and Garfunkel´s Concert In Central Park, that Artie signed some years ago in Verona, but he kindly refused to sign it (´I don´t sign that´, said). So I gave him my ´Paul Simon´s Concert In Central Park´ insert booklet, he watched at it a few seconds, and said ´I sign tickets, and I sign this´, and so he did. That was just right after that my wife had the back cover of the CD ´Harts And Bones´ signed. Before he went up to his car we shook his hand and thanked for the show, and I thanked him again saying ´Mr. Simon, you´re a great artist, and a gentleman too´. He appreciated, amd said ´thanks´. Then I wished him a good tour in Paris.