Paul McCartney gets back to Beatles concert venue at the Budokan in Tokyo

Paul McCartney brought back reminders of his days with the Beatles April 28 in a show at the Budokan in Tokyo with a shorter than usual concert that had a set list with, as usual, many Fab Four songs but also numerous set list changes from his previous show, according to information obtained from McCartney's press office. The changes began with the first song as he dropped the previous show opener “Magical Mystery Tour” and began his set with the Beatles song “Can't Buy Me Love.”

Other changes included the addition of the Beatles songs "Another Girl" and “Got To Get You Into My Life” and McCartney solo songs “Dance Tonight.” And in a rare move, he eliminated the usual tributes to John Lennon (“Here Today”) and George Harrison (“Something”), and only played one encore with “Yesterday,” “Birthday” and the usual “Abbey Road” medley instead of his usual two.

The Beatles played five shows at the Budokan over three days in June and July of 1966. According to Mark Lewisohn's “The Complete Beatles Chronicle,” the group performed one show on June 30 and two each on July 1 and 2 in front of 10,000 fans each show. The concert on June 30 and the first one on July 1 were both videotaped in color by Nippon Television (NTV). The shows, in excellent quality, have been released both legitimately and by bootleggers. Cheap Trick and Bob Dylan are among other rockers who have played the venue, which was originally built for martial arts competitions.

“It’s very exciting to be returning to the Budokan because it is a very special place and was the first place we played in Japan,” McCartney said in a statement in advance of the concert. “There was a lot of controversy at the time but I now know that it is a regular venue for a lot of people. But for me it has a very special place in my memory.” Their roughly 20-minute show featured "Rock and Roll Music," "She's a Woman," "If I Needed Someone," "Day Tripper," "Baby's In Black," "I Feel Fine," "Yesterday," "I Wanna Be Your Man," "Nowhere Man," "Paperback Writer" and "I'm Down."

Here's the official set list from McCartney's Budokan show as obtained from his press office: (additions in bold): “Can't Buy Me Love” (changed from “Magical Mystery Tour”), “Save Us, “All My Loving” (changed from “Can't Buy Me Love”), “One After 909” (changed from “Listen to What the Man Said”), “Let Me Roll It/Foxey Lady,” “Paperback Writer,” “My Valentine,” “Nineteen Hundred and Eighty-Five”, “Maybe I'm Amazed” (“The Long and Winding Road” deleted), “I've Just Seen a Face,” “Another Day,” “Dance Tonight” (added), “We Can Work It Out” (was before “Another Day” previously, also “Hope For the Future” deleted), “And I Love Her,” “Blackbird,” (“Here Today” deleted), “NEW,” (“Queenie Eye” deleted), “Lady Madonna,” “Another Girl” (added), “Got To Get You Into My Life” (added and “All Together Now,” “Lovely Rita,” “Eleanor Rigby” deleted), “Being for the Benefit of Mr Kite,” (“Something” deleted), “Ob-La-Di Ob-La-Da,” (“Band on the Run” deleted), “Back in the U.S.S.R.,” “Let It Be,” “Live and Let Die,” “Hey Jude.”

Encore: “Yesterday,” “Birthday” (no “Helter Skelter”) “Golden Slumbers”/“Carry That Weight”/“The End.” (Entire first encore of “Day Tripper,” “Hi Hi Hi,” “I Saw Her Standing There” which usually preceded these songs, deleted).

See pictures from the show in the slide show. And hear an excerpt of "Another Girl" in the video on this page.

The tour moves on to Seoul, South Korea May 2. After that, the tour will move to Europe beginning with shows at the 02 in London on May 23 and 24. then the Echo Arena in Liverpool May 28. Tickets for these shows are available here.