Monday, June 5, 2017

The Road to U2 Joshua Tree 2017

In the fall of 1987, I was a Junior in high school. A friend of mine had an extra ticket to see U2 on their Joshua Tree tour at the old Arena and I decided to go along. Another brief friendship with a boy at the end of my Sophmore year, had introduced me to U2's music so I figured it would be a good show.

Little did I know that it would be a concert that would literally change my life! If there is one thing I know about U2, they really know how to put on a live show. Bono is the ultimate performer when it comes to engaging the crowd. By the end of the show I was a fan for life. The whole crowd stood there singing the lyrics "How long to sing this song?" of their final song from "40" long after the band had left the stage, and they finally had to turn the lights up and blast music from the sound system to get us all to leave. I knew in that moment, singing along that I had found a band that I would always love.

And I have continued to love them throughout the years.
Achtung Baby came out when I was in college and it was different from Joshua Tree in so many ways but amazing. And then Zooropa was out not too long after which has one of my all time favorite songs "Stay". I am still kicking myself to this day that my boyfriend at the time and I did not see them on that tour, (one of their biggest ever) due to our "budget".

All of our friends pretty much loved U2 and one of those friends was Mike. I think he was a bigger fan than even I was if that's possible. And we really connected over their music. It was only one of the many things really that drew us together. But our love for U2 was a big one. We even danced to their version of "Unchained Melody" at our wedding for our first dance.

Two weeks after we were married, we saw U2 on tour for POP and we were right next to the smaller stage so were pretty close to the band for a good part of the show. It was the first time I had been that close and I loved it!

As the years passed, every time U2 went on tour, we had to go to at least two or three different places besides here in St. Louis to see them. Kansas City, Chicago, Vegas, and even Dublin Ireland which was on our bucket list. Mike has also seen them in Toronto, Seattle and Nashville.
 (Dublin Ireland)

Two of the concerts (the one in Vegas and one here is St. Louis) I was pregnant with Evan. We always like to joke that he is such a big U2 fan because he heard them in utero. :)
In Fall of 2009, we went back to Chicago to see them, but this time Evan went with us for his first real U2 concert ever.


The best concert so far though was here in St. Louis in 2011 on their 360 tour when we were right in the front of the stage.

This close to the Edge and the rest of the band when they came to his side. Right there in front of us! Evan was at this show too. And I know I've shared this photo Mike took before, but I love it because the Edge was looking right at Evan and smiling at his enthusiasm. It was awesome!

With their latest tour "Songs of Innocence" they didn't come to St. Louis, so once again we drove up to Chicago. We were only able to get two GA tickets so I let Evan take it to be down on the floor with Mike and I sat way up at the top. It was worth it though and still a good show. I love that Mike and Evan had that experience together!

And now thirty years later - they are back on tour for Joshua Tree. Mike missed it the first time around. And I missed out on Zoo Station. So we say we are even, although he likes to tease me that his show was bigger which I can't disagree.

But this time, the four of us went. The whole family. Erin didn't want to miss out and so she went to her first U2 show ever. It was Evan's fourth. Mike and I have actually lost count. I am sure we could figure it out, but let's just say 15+ since 1987 for me.
Just too hard to get a good photo of the four of us, and like I said not wanting to share too many recent private photos. But this one gives you an idea.

I love when the crowd looks like stars in the sky.

The show opened with four oldies - Sunday Bloody Sunday, New Year's Day, Bad and Pride
And the Joshua Tree portion of the show did not disappoint for me. From the moment Streets started to the end with Mothers of the Disappeared. Edge rocked on Exit and In God's Country has special meaning for Mike and I from a time we listened to Joshua Tree on an old cassette as we drove through Montana and Idaho on a trip to see friends right before we were married.
But surprisingly, I absolutely loved when they played Beautiful Day and Elevation. This photo was taken during Beautiful Day and the lighting was fantastic. Just beautiful! Mike got a fun video of me, himself and Evan singing the lyrics together, but I won't share that here. ;)
Elevation? Once again the Edge rocked and I found myself singing and jumping along. It was probably my next favorite part of the show this time.

Being so far from the stage was hard at first. We are usually down in that crowd as close as we can possibly get. This time around with Erin though it wouldn't have worked. And frankly, looking at the photo it makes me kind of glad we weren't down there. That is a lot of people!

U2 has meant a lot to me through the years. They have been a connection between Mike and I. They have been a connection we have with our son. And so many times their lyrics and music have spoken to me. I have many friends who feel the same way, and I have connected with U2 fans all over the country and world. And then there are the people who just can't stand them and love to tell me how much Bono sucks. But really, love or hate them, they are a popular band. And I love them!


  1. Loved reading about your "road" to loving U2! And so nice that you can share that love with your kids. They have been one of my favorite bands for a long time, but my volunteer work with ONE pretty much sealed the deal. Bono's talk inspires me to want to make this world a better place.

  2. Love love love the photos from the shows!!!! And now reading the shows you have attended, you were at ones I worked!!! That is awesome!!!!!

  3. AWESOME! I love that you have seen them in so many places. Great photos!