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"Music should be made for the head, the heart, and the feet. And when it's got those three, it's got it all." — Bono



by Kerry

Four years ago, as a fourteen year old, I convinced my mom that we should check out POPmart to see what it was all about. A day later we were dancing in a half empty Giants Stadium, and I remember thinking that it was the greatest experience of my life.
After four years of waiting to do it again and a whole lot of "coins in the cookie jar" style money saving, I had tickets to see my favorite band 5 times. All of those five nights were amazing, but my personal favorite was definitely June 21 in New Jersey.
My younger brother and I arrived at the arena a little before 9AM and were numbers 72 and 73 on the GA line. It was my only chance at GA on the tour, and I wanted to do it right. As soon as I got there, I was amazed by how great the fans there were. I didn't know the line number system was entirely fan-run, but it went incredibly well. I met so many amazing people on that line. When the downpours came, strangers invited me into their cars. Dedicated fans patiently answered all of my questions about traveling the country and sleeping in parking lots to see their favorite band. It was awesome to feel part of something so huge.
When we finally entered the arena, I was struck with awe. I had seen concerts and hockey games there before, but I had never walked through the lower levels to the floor. Everyone was practically bursting as they *walked* (technically didn't run) to the various stages of getting on the floor. The arena staff was friendly and understood the excitement as they laughed good-naturedly at the excited throng.
When I got to the floor, the outside heart tip and inside front rail were already full, so I raced into the heart and claimed a spot on the inside heart tip rail. Just walking into the heart (after hearing so much about the experience and seeing three shows from the stands) was incredible.
The show was great. The crowd around me knew instantly what it meant when the ubiquitous bass throb ended and the trio of songs that play before U2 enter began. People clapped. People danced. People shouted along to the Beatles. When the Elevation intro kicked in, people went ape.
The setlist was similar to previous sets, but it didn't matter. What mattered was jumping in time to the music and the crowd during Elevation... reaching out to Bono across the rail whenever he walked the ramp... being awed by the strobes in Until the End of the World and smothered by the smoke machines in Bad... squinting in the glare of Bono's BTBS spotlight when he shined it in my face... dancing along to Desire not 2 feet from my favorite band... smiling back at Adam when he read me and my GA-line-friends' "thank you" sign... flying during Streets... feeling the intensity of an awesome show.
I had a camera and took pics, but when I got them back, it turned out something had been wrong with the film. Not a problem. This was one show I am unable to forget. Four years after being given a taste of U2 at a sparsly attended POPmart show, I finally recaptured the experience and energy of a dang good concert.

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