PAUL CARRACK at Zuiderpark Theater in The Hague

As a celebration of his 50-year-long career as a musician, Paul Carrack, who was once famously dubbed by the BBC as The Man with the Golden Voice, blessed the Zuiderpark Theatre stage in the Hague on the 27th of May. The internationally respected British singer, musician, composer and songwriter who has previously been a member of a series of notable British rock bands such as Mike & The Mechanics, ACE and Squeeze is now touring Europe as a solo artist with his long-time backing band including his son, Jack.

The open-air concert venue allowed for streams of golden sunbeams straight onto the Man with the Golden Voice himself as Carrack surely lived up to his name. The set list was made up of flawlessly manoeuvred covers of some of his favourite jazz, soul, gospel and blues songs. Paul Carrack and his band bounced between performing heart-wrenching ballads such as Raining in My Heart and The Living Years, which brought a chill down the audience’s spine, several soul-elevating melodies like Groovin’, as well as a few songs from his prolific personal career.

The highly skilled virtuosos tightly strapped the audience on an emotional rollercoaster that nobody wanted to get off as they performed against a black backdrop enabling absolutely zero distractions from the exhilarating event.

Paul Carracks’ humility shone through as he spent most of the set rotating between a keyboard and an electronic organ while he gave each of his bandmates a generous moment to shine and rightly so, since they were all just as brilliant as he was. The saxophonist, in particular, had the audience floored whenever he stepped forward on stage at which he received admiral applause every time.  It was evident that each and every one of them was masters of their crafts.

So much so that although the event was seated, the sound of tapping feet was not a silent addition. Tapping feet soon turned into swaying to and fro and by the time Carrack returned for his encore, the audience was up on their feet doing the two-step and singing along at the top of their lungs to How Long and Over my Shoulder, some of the afternoon’s final songs. The harmonious hour went by in the blink of an eye and so I’ll end by saying that my only critique was that it wasn’t long enough!  Eva Lakeman  27th May 2023