#33

On my 40 Before 40 List, #33 was to see U2 in concert with Brock. The reason this was on my list is because they are my all-time favorite band and I wanted him to see them perform! …he likes U2, but not nearly as much as I do. However, he did really enjoy this concert. We saw them in Nashville at Vanderbilt Stadium on July 2, for their U2 360° Tour (following the release of No Line on the Horizon). Before this most recent concert, I’d seen them 3 times:

1) their PopMart Tour in Memphis (following the release of Pop)

2) their Elevation Tour in Atlanta (following the release of All That You Can’t Leave Behind)

3) their Vertigo Tour in Atlanta (following the release of How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb)

All of the concerts were, of course, amazing! But I think Elevation, Vertigo and 360° are my favorites… all for different reasons. The atmosphere in Vanderbilt Stadium was electric with the stage almost covering the whole field and the audience packed to the rafters; there wasn’t a bad seat in the entire place! And they played so many of their best songs–rather than sticking to No Line on the Horizon. They even played several songs I’ve never heard live before (several from Achtung Baby, one of my favorite albums)! And the stage setup was astounding!

I’ve come to expect Bono to get a little spiritual and/or political at some point during the concert as well, which I truly don’t mind. Perhaps because it’s his faith and worldview that come through in the lyrics (in addition to the band’s rocking music), to which I am drawn and with which I agree. However, other than a couple of short comments, this past show was all about the music and interacting with the fans.

Here’s the set list:

Even Better Than The Real Thing

The Fly

Mysterious Ways / Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It) (snippet)

Until The End Of The World

I Will Follow

Get On Your Boots

I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For / The Wanderer

Stay (Faraway, So Close!)

Beautiful Day / Space Oddity (snippet)

Elevation

Pride (In The Name Of Love)

Miss Sarajevo

Zooropa

City Of Blinding Lights

Vertigo

Miss You (snippet) / I’ll Go Crazy If I Don’t Go Crazy Tonight / Discothèqu(snippet) / Psycho Killer (snippet) / Life During Wartime (snippet)

Sunday Bloody Sunday

Scarlet

Walk On / You’ll Never Walk Alone (snippet)

encores: One

Amazing Grace (snippet) /Where The Streets Have No Name

Hold Me, Thrill Me, Kiss Me, Kill Me

With Or Without You

Moment of Surrender

All I Want Is You

Two major surprises in this show that was actually FULL of them: First, as the band finished playing I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For, they segued into The Wanderer, a song that was written for Johnny Cash, and performed with him on the album Zooropa. It’s the first time the song had ever been performed live–how appropriate that they sang it in Nashville! Bono even sang it in a very Johnny-Cash-like voice (for the first verse or so). It was certainly a highlight of the show!

Then, with the band about to walk off stage, Bono started talking to someone on the front row: “You want to play what?” Before you know it, this dude was up on stage, holding Bono’s Irish Falcon guitar and being introduced to Music City. “My wife’s name is Andrea,” he explained. “I’m kinda nervous man!” But as he started playing, the band backing him, Bono started singing, All I Want Is You and the nerves disappeared. Here’s the video:

I LOVE how Bono stands there talking to him at the end, hugs him, and then gives him his guitar!!!!! Wow. Just wow.

One of the BEST concerts ever. U2, or otherwise.

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