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"It's always heartfelt, but he will intuitively go for the thing that works." — Edge, on Bono's stage antics

by Steve

It was a cold and damp rainy day and evening when U2 flew in and out for the one show at the Mellon Arena. Spirits were still high and energy on overload when U2 made their entrance a few minutes before 9pm.

For you fans who like magic and wonder how Bono makes his seemly surprise stage entrance, heres the (cough) first hand look I witnessed

If you watch The Edges side floor level at the opening bars of City of Blinding Lights, you can see Bono being escorted wearing a black hooded shirt through the barricades to make his center Eclipse grand entrance. No David Copperfield thing happening here.

I could go on about the set list and everyone has opinionsso who cares what I have to say and the band could care less what people think about a set list. U2 does not tell their fans how to run a floor buffer at work. However, Crumbs was not played. Anyways here are some show notes:

The Eclipse was not used as much as they used it on the Elevation Tour and when used spent a generous time on Adams side of the arena.

Bono spent too much time talking to the crowd before a song like we were 5 yr olds about how The Edge is from the future, etc.

Too many little girls congesting the hallways holding clipboards trying to get signatures for whatever the band supports. Im sure if the band said lets make The Wiggles go double platinum this week scores of people would invade the record shops the next day.

Behind the stage seats are hit or miss for fans shelling out middle range ticket prices. It appeared to me that Bono only acknowledged their presence once during the show during Pride . The woooohhh ohhh ohhh ohhh chant thing punching his arm up while looking at the fans may have justified the $90 price?

As for the opening act Damian Marley, for what they do same monotonous reggae beat and lyrics oooouuuuuuu, aaaaa lay.ooouuuu aaaaa lay oughhh oughhhh after 2 songs you understand why reggae only works when you are under the influence. What confuses me is that a band like U2 who is all for civil rights, etcwhy they allow a member of Damian Marleys group to just stand around waving a flag makes you wonder if U2 supports slavery? Cmonlaugh, you will live longer.

Overall, it was a fun show but looking back 20 yrs ago when I paid $13.75 to see them from the 2nd row, I should have held on to my $180.00.

Side Notes:

Former Treasury Secretary Paul O Neill was sitting behind me. I asked Mr. ONeill to autograph a dollar bill, one that already has his signature imprinted on it . Mr. ONeill was in great spirits and signed it.

U2 did not stop and walk up to meet waiting fans as they have done in numerous cities throughout this tour. Arriving a few minutes after 6pm with a Police escort, Bono waved from the SUV window and even motioned with the universal one finger hang on a minute gesture. This made the 30 or so fans excitedonly later to disappoint by breaking the universal one finger promise. If someone video taped the arrival maybe I should check what finger he used.

Here are a few photos I shot along with a gig poster I obtained that were produced for venue use.

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