Sunday, 31 August 2008

1997 August - Popmart Wembley One

Our First Popmart show in the UK was on 22nd August at Wembley Stadium. I met up with Jane and Dianne at our hotel close to the venue. We headed off and walked to the stadium as we went up Wembley Way we could see the top of the Popmart arch peeping above the stadium. We went inside at 5pm and at first got near to the B stage but not at the front, I couldn't see a thing so we moved back at bit and finally ended up in the first row of unreserved seats at the back - it proved to be a good position.

The support was Audioweb and The Longpigs, I quite enjoyed the latter band. U2 came on quite early, 8.30pm, Pop Muzik blasted out of the huge bank of speakers and POP came up in red on the screens. the band came on from the left hand side and walked through the aisle between the enclosure and the main area of the pitch. they were dressed the same except for Bono wearing a blue robe rather than a white one. The first few songs were Mofo, I Will Follow, Gone the difference from the early US shows was astounding, the band was very together. The new songs were well received by the audience.

A lovely extra in this show was All I Want Is You, Staring at the Sun was acoustic done by Bono and Edge on the B-stage, very nice. Please was just fantastic, it's a highlight of this tour for me. Hold Me.... is done very differently form in the US, very theatrical and dramatic. Towards the end Bono took off his glasses, and without make-up, turned into MacPhisto again - his face just totally changed. He looked into the camera, his gorgeous blue eyes looking straight at us on the screens, and then he kissed the camera and put the shades onto it, then a picture of MacPhisto appeared on the screens. Wonderful stuff, and brilliant performing.

The images on the screens are great and really complement the music and never over-powering it or the band. From the back of the stadium where we were we saw the full effect of these images and colours.

After the end of the show we went around to the back of the stadium to see if we could catch the band leaving. We met up with Julie, Linda, Karen, Serena, Jackie and Sharon there. I also met up with online friends Michelle, Rory and Clare there too, that's one of the lovely things about U2 tours you get to bump into old friends!

Adam was the first to leave but he didn't stop, just waved from the car. Next was Edge who did the meet and greet, very politely shaking hands and signing autographs for fans as he worked his way along the row of people. He's such a sweetheart!

Third one to leave was Bono, as he came across an Australian girl shot over the barrier like lightening and grabbed him. He didn't look too pleased and she was gently removed by security.


It just shows how fast things like that can happen, luckily this girl was harmless.

Bono shook people's hands, chatted and signed autographs. He wasn't as organised as Edge, and was going back and forth along the line in a rather chaotic manner. I didn't get too close to him because there were people in front of me but I got some photos. It was still just nice to see him.

Last but certainly not least, was Larry who was an absolute star. He signed autographs for anyone who wanted them. He was happy for people to take photos and was so pleasant! I got my Staring at the Sun CD cover signed by him. I thanked him and he looked me right in the eye and said, "You're welcome" with a dazzling smile, what a charmer! When Larry does decide to meet the fans he really can be so nice, I wish he would do that more often.

So that was the end of a long but very enjoyable day in London. We'd seen a great show and met three of the band, not bad going for the first show of the UK leg of the Popmart Tour!


1 comment:

Jonathan Wood said...

Hi,

I was at this concert as a young boy and was pulled up onto the stage and I am trying to find if anyone has any pictures.

My brother and I was in a full Arsenal football kit (red) and he shook and kissed my hand.

If by some amazing chance you do, my email is jonathanwood_1986@hotmail.com

Thanks,
Jonathan