Before the largest crowd yet of his Change Your Socks World Tour, Democratic presidential contender and hard rocker Barack Obama delivered a dynamic performance at Berlin's Victory Column stadium last night, leaving delirious fans exhausted but clamoring for more.
Standing amid a nonstop light show and stunning multiple giant screen imagery suggestive of his vision of a revived world economy and a strong America, Barack kept the fans screaming with renditions of such favorites as 'Ich bin ein Berliner', 'Walls Cannot Stand (Just Look Behind You)', 'Let Me Be Your Teddy Kennedy' and, in finale, a twenty-minute powerhouse encore of 'Chicago, Chicago, That Terrorist Town' with guest guitarists Keith Richards and Jimi Hendrix joining him from backstage.
The latter duo brought the house down - particularly as both are widely believed to have been long dead and/or mummified - and their musical contribution added an unexpected and ultra hip flare to Barack's more low key flash.
Obama said he was singing as a citizen, not as a president, but the show was awash in politics. His performance inevitably invited comparison to historic concerts in the same city by Presidents John F. Kennedy and Ronald Reagan, and he freely borrowed rhyme and rhetoric throughout.
"People of Berlin, people of the world, this is our moment! This is our time," he yelled into the microphone to maddened cheers.
"Berlin - I love you!"
Obama's Berlin concert was the centerpiece of a fast-paced tour through Europe designed to reassure skeptical rock-n-rollers back home about his ability to lead the country and stay in key; taking the tired world in a new direction after eight years of repetitive Bush-Cheney washboard and banjo duets.
Republicans, chafing at the media attention Obama's campaign-season concert has drawn, sought to stoke doubts about his claims.
In Die Welt, the German publication, Rep. Thaddeus McBain, R-Mich., demanded: "We never know which Obama we'll get. Will it be the ideological, left-wing hard-rocking Democratic primary candidate who wowed crowds with his vow to 'end' the war rather than win it (#14 on the music charts is his nostalgic 'Can You Say Vietnam?'), or the sardonic Democratic nominee who dismisses the progressing coalition victory as a 'distraction' by crooning 'Behind Blue Eyes' (#28 on the charts)?
"Will it be the American populist who has told supporters in the United States that he will demand more cheese from our allies in Europe and damn well get it, or the sequined liberal internationalist hell-bent on signing autographs throughout Europe's salons and concert halls?"
Only time will tell if these Republican dismissals will have any effect on what is being called 'the Obamarama' effect - Barack's indefinable and inextinguishable charm and appeal to fans throughout the world.
Either way, sales of tickets, tee-shirts and Ipod downloads of his greatest hits remain at a high unprecedented since the the Fab Four blew the roof off the complex and often confusing world of musical voting.