Sunday, 8 November 2015

46. Growing up with U2

I first saw U2 34 years ago, in October 1981. I was 16 and it was one of my first live music experiences.  I was there with my gig buddies - my big brother and two others. It was in a small venue in Glasgow called Tiffany's ballroom.

All four of us were buzzing on the way home. We knew we'd seen something very special. What we didn't realise at the time was that Bono et al. would grow up to be the best band in the world. And not for nothing.  With great recorded output and a live show that I'd describe as peerless, they deserve to be at the very top of the musical tree.

They're back in Glasgow, as part of their 5 or 6 yearly world tour and for the first time in over 30 years, I missed the rush for tickets.   My chums don't come around that often and I feel sad that I won't see them.  Genuinely sad.  It's hard to explain,  but we've grown together, U2 and me.  Our journey has been different, but probably also very similar in large parts. And we've got history.  Over 30 years of history. 

Ofcourse, now I can experience them whenever I want, thanks to the miracle of the internet.  I've always believed Bono and U2 are way ahead of the curve, merging music and technology in really innovative ways.  But all the while, staying true to their roots as a first class rock band.  Their current outing is called the Experience World Tour.  Ofcourse it is....  And even although I missed out on a ticket, I can still be part of the experience.  Say what you want about them giving their last album away for free.  I thought it was a masterstroke and very much in keeping with who they are.  Generous, talented and innovative.  

Few bands divide opinion like U2 and it seems to be pretty unfashionable to love them. But a squillion people can't be wrong. And I've never cared much for fashion anyway.

All hail King Bono and his band of brothers.

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