Saturday, 23 May 2009

2005 June - Glasgow Vertigo, Magic and Fun

We flew from London to Glasgow where we were seeing the next gig, nowadays it's cheaper to travel long distances and also save time that way. We got the airport bus into the city centre and after a walk up one of Glasgow's hills checked in at the Travel Inn.

We dined in the hotel restaurant and later met our friend Alan from the Scottish U2 tribute band NU2 in the hotel bar later that evening, it was nice to see him again.

Next day Debbi and Julie left early for the stadium, they wanted to get in the queue so they would be sure to get close to the barrier as we had GA tickets. Dianne and I didn't want to do that so we took it easy and left about two hours later. When we got to Hampden we found that the queues were not long and our friends were only about three yards in front of us! Things are never as manic in Scotland as at other venues which is really nice.

As we waited the weather got hotter and hotter as the day progressed, there was nowhere to get any shade and Debbi got badly sunburned. Julie and I also got burned but not quite as badly. the suffering we go through in the name of U2!

The gates opened at 4.30pm and everyone streamed in, up loads of steps and then down loads of steps into the stadium. We got a great position right on the catwalk barrier, almost the same as in Manchester. And, one of those weird coincidences once more, our friend Dawn was right near us!

The support was Black Rebel Motorcycle Gang and Interpol, both pretty boring for me. Then it was U2, and right from the start it was clear Bono was in high spirits and full of energy. During Elevation he lay on the stage and kissed a femItalicale photographer. At the beginning of Miracle Drug Bono counted on his fingers and said. "Three notes...." then he looked at Edge who shook his head and mouthed "Four", everyone including Bono laughed.

Later Bono talked about Make Poverty History before singing One and said the band were very proud of their fans for supporting the cause. Then he said. "We're coming back to Scotland for the G8!" He was referring to a concert that was going to take place when the next G8 meeting was in Edinburgh in a few weeks time. It got a huge cheer from the crowd.

At one point he got a pretty young girl out to dance with, she looked a bit like a very young Ali. After the show we bumped into the girl who was still very hyped up. She was called Maria and very sweet. I asked her if Bono had said anything to her and she replied that all he said was. "Shhh," and put his finger to his lips when she first got on the stage, I remember seeing that. At one point she burst into tears and that was when he pulled her close and cradled her head and rested his head against hers. I told her I'd got some photos of her and Bono, she was so pleased, we swapped email addresses and I later sent her copies.

The encore started with Zoo Station followed by a really rocking The Fly. Sometimes You Can't Make It On Your Own was sung very close to us and brought a lump to my throat, Bono was lost in the music. That song could have also been written for my mother and me, I really relate to a lot of those lyrics.

Bono added a bit of Walk On and Happy Birthday to One in honour of Aung San Suu Kyi's recent 60th birthday.

During City Of Blinding Lights Bono got a helium balloon from someone in the audience and let it go and we all watched it float up into the darkness and drift away. It was a simple thing but it felt special and drew the crowd together, Bono is a natural at those kind of things.

This Glasgow show was one of those shows, where U2 seized the moment and a huge stadium felt small and intimate, that's the genius this band can reach at times. We left feeling uplifted and elated, pure magic!

No comments: