Rehearsal Concert for the European Release of "Photograph Smile"
Mainz, Germany 18 May 98
On May 18, 1998 Julian Lennon released (in Europe) his fifth album, "Photograph Smile" after a seven year hiatus...he also preformed a rehearsal concert to promote the album in Mainz, Germany (aired by SWF3 radio station in Germany)
This was the forth concert to promote the new album. The previous concerts were in Rome, London and Singapore.
Julian was supported by a 10 piece band including Gregory Darling from Monaco Records on piano and his long time pal Justin Clayton on guitar.
During the sound check the music was rehearsed and equipment and mics were put in order for that evening's concert.
The Concert started at 9 pm in Germany... with a woman who introduced Julian in German...
Julian then referred to the concert as a rehearsal saying "Good evening....welcome to the.. ah umm... as it has been said before welcome to the rehearsal. This is a rehearsal really truly it is the first time we have played together. I hope you enjoy it we have a couple of numbers for you for this evening. Hopefully we can have a bit of fun from it so enjoy." Then promptly went into "How Many Times"... a song whose lyrics like those of Julian's previous song "Saltwater" from the album "Help Yourself" are of conservation of the earth ..."how many times can we re-run the race that we just won... well we're always looking for something new... but what difference does it make when there is no point of view.. when you can't even take care of the past... how do you expect the future to last...well there's people in pain all over the world...and if something doesn't change between man and his world... say good bye to all the birds and the bees...deforestation and the death of the trees...immunization as we fall to our knees...I'm begging you please..."
Following the first song Julian admitted to his stage nerves saying: "Thank you... not so bad...I always get very nervous doing this. Every time I walk on the stage.. I mean literally, the hands are shaking. The more I play, the more I get comfortable with you the happier I feel, you know the more relaxed we are. So we'll just continue and we'll chat latter." He then started singing "And She Cries" about a woman is completely devoted to a man who is not around...hummm... and then went into "I Should Have Know" a beautiful ballad about a broken heart...
Julian then went into "Believe" and other love song about the need to believe in love.... "If we believed in love we wouldn't worry about the problems of tomorrow. There would be a strength inside of us to last the rest of our lives to never break away never let go..."
Julian introduced the next song, another beautiful ballad, with..."This next song is called 'Good To Be Lonely'. The reason why I wrote this was because the time that one seems to be able to find oneself and reflect and think about the mistakes in the past and where we are now and where we are going with our hopes and dreams... tends to be when you find yourself on your own and that's why I believe it's good to be lonely sometimes. So here we go..."
The next piece was the title track, "Photograph Smile," and was introduced as the first piece Julian and Greg Darling wrote together. "Photograph Smile" was a slow ballad with a beautiful string arrangement. The imagery of waving goodbye reminded me of "Sunday Morning" from the "Mr. Jordan" album... yet this time it is girl who is leaving..."and she's waving goodbye with that photograph smile.."
They then picked up the pace a bit with a song Julian said "sounds familiar but isn't really.." called "I Don't Wanna Know" a simple rock and roll song with a catchy tune reminiscent of The Beatles.
The lead single "Day After Day" followed. Julian talked about this song saying..." It's all about... the story of it is about being in a war... being away from your family and the ones you love and the only thing that keeps you alive.. in survival is the hope of one day.. the dream that one day you'll make it back to the people you love... your family and your loved ones. And that can relate to all of us when we get so far away from home sometimes. So for those out there who work away from home, this is for you.."
After thanking the crowd, Julian finished the approximately 45 minute concert with a song he has been closing concerts with since Valotte... "Stand By Me".
All in all the concert/rehearsal was wonderful... a few missed endings and such but it was just a rehearsal for the upcoming world tour Julian is planning for "Photograph Smile". The new songs, all off of "Photograph Smile", are beautiful and seem more relaxed and natural than some of Julian's previous work...CJ
Background/Flowers from the 'Photograph Smile'
CD inlet by Angelika Letsch.
'Hey Jules' © 1998 - 2002 CJ Burianek