Consol arena leaders worked 8 days a week to get McCartney
Friday, June 04, 2010
By Scott Mervis, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Money can't buy love, and it can't buy a Beatle.
Wooing Sir Paul McCartney as the opener for the Consol Energy Center on Aug. 18 required nearly a year's worth of begging and pleading, a trip to Puerto Rico to negotiate and even a tighter construction schedule for the new building.
Consol management on Thursday announced the opening concert at the new Uptown arena, expressing what we knew all along -- Mr. McCartney was its choice from the get-go.
History dictated that it be so. The Beatles played the most famous concert in Mellon Arena history 46 years ago, in 1964, and the former Beatle's last concert in Pittsburgh, at Mellon, was 20 years ago, due to his production on subsequent tours being too massive for the old arena's rigging.
Jay Roberts, general manager of SMG, which manages Consol Energy Center, said that in the early 2000s his boss came to him and said, "We have Paul McCartney. The only thing you have to do is figure out how to hang it."