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"Now that I can afford to buy any drums I want, I get them for free." — Larry

by Andrew A!

A lots been said but here's my 2 cents...
(see my other chicago reviews too)

I got in the GA line at 10:30 and was number 110 in line. It was cold and sunny, so we huddled in the sun and got sun burnt. I met people from St. Louis (hi Tom and the gang!) and Minnesota. Sorry after four days I can't remember anyone else's name. In the morning, a fan passed around a list of names in line but it was more for our knowing who was in line (security didn't use it, we had to settle any line disputes ourselves.)

At 3:30 I went over to the other side of the United Center and waited with the fans for autographs. Larry and Adam drove in and just waived. Bono and The Edge drove in a few minutes later. They stopped for a sec and Bono hung out of the car and said something like "sorry, we gotta go in" and they drove in.

Back in line, I was a bit worried about the GA thing (after hearing about mad dashes to the heart.) However, everything went well, the security lined us up at 4:30-5:00 P.M. and had us take turns and put our lawn chairs away. They were nice. They stopped letting people go the the port-o-potties and even letting regular ticket holders get across the barricades we lined up between. We walked in the building at 6:00 P.M. and got our first wristband. Then we walked through the hall and down onto the floor and into the heart. All along the way was lined with security, so there was no running, cutting, or anything it was great. I staked out a spot right in front of The Edge and got my second wristband in the heart. Anywhere in their is great, actually seeing the stage from so close (seeing Larry's drum kit and realizing how close I'd be...wow!) I felt guilty, it seemed wrong to be so close! It was great to hear Dallas play those bits of famous songs too.

PJ Harvey was pretty good but I didn't know much of her music. She was interactive with the audience, saying thank you a lot. Someone from The Edge's side golden circle yelled "You Suck" twice. PJ responded with "I suck what?"

When the Elevation remix came on (after "Higher Ground",) the heart went nuts. When the Band came on, the heart went crazy. When they started playing, the arena exploded. I could not hear the song actually because everyone was screaming in excitement. I could hear everyone singing the "hoo hoo" part though. It was funny because during The Edge's solo everyone kept singing "hoo hoo" then too.

Later, while The Edge and Bono were out at the tip of the heart, Bono said this next one is off their album Zooropa. I was excited thinking "yes! Stay!" Then he said "The Edge wants to play Desire. It is a guitar thing." Everyone cheered. The acoustic version is ok but I prefer the full band version. Afterwards, Bono looks at a sign held up from someone at the tip of the heart. He said "it pays to advertise." He asked The Edge "what key Stay was in." The Edge whispered in his ear. Bono then leaned down and asked the fan. He pulled him up (I guess he-Jonathon- got it right!) Jonathon walked from the tip all the way to the piano. Bono said "if you're crap, you're off!" then "nothing flowery, this is a U2 show". It was awesome, everyone in the heart cheered for him.

After the show, I talked to the belly dancer (who was in line all day dancing). She came in a car with a U2 flag on the antenna and "U2 mobile" painted on the back. The car was parked next to mine. (Btw, it was $15 for parking!) Get this, she told me that this was her *first* U2 concert! Wow, what a first...

Another neat thing being so close to the stage was seeing Bono tell The Edge to hold up before "One" so he could thank Chicago for being so hip to Pop and Popmart and the soldier field shows being a turning point for them. Then at "Wake Up, Dead Man" Bono again motioned to The Edge to hold up but he didn't see him and started playing. Bono then started to sing but then told The Edge to sing. He started singing but stopped. Then Bono took it from the top and it was great.

After "Walk On" the band left. "Grace" started playing over the speakers and the lights came on. I was so thirsty and tired from waiting all day and jumping up and down and singing all night that I didn't know if I could/would go the the next 3 shows. But after talking to my friends, sure enough I was back in line the next day.

(see my other reviews!)

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