The fifth and final show in Chicago, my ninth of the tour and 84th overall, was magnificent! I finally got my picture with Larry (after 23 years of touring), and U2 played “Gloria,” “Bad” ending with a verse from “Moment of Surrender,” “California” and ended with “40,” which was a perfect way to end these glorious five shows in Chicago!
I woke up at 3am after just about three hours sleep. I tweeted “it’s 3;33 and i’m wide awake in america” – a bit of foreshadowing for “Bad” later that night. I finally fell back to sleep around 6am and finally got up at 8am. I was the United Center just after 9:30am to wait for U2 to arrive. Funny that I refuse to wait out in the GA line all day, but I wait out all day to meet U2, or more specifically Larry. My friend Erin saved me a spot next to her up front at the barricade. The same exact spot I stood exactly a week ago, last Thursday, when I shook Larry’s hand after thanking him for giving me the drumsticks in Denver. Joy joined us shortly after. It was windy and cold – felt more like a cool fall day in October than a summer day in July!
Edge was the first to arrive, but didn’t stop. I figured he wouldn’t since we came out on Monday. Then Larry arrived and he didn’t stop. I wasn’t sure he would either since he also came out on Monday. I was a little disappointed. I thought maybe they all would stop since it was the last show in Chicago. It got to be 3:30, and we were getting worried. Had we waited all day for nothing? Well at least we got to hang out with everyone. Then Adam arrived and he did stop, which I thought he would because he just briefly stopped on Monday. I had been eating Pop Tarts and thought it would be funny if I got Adam to sign my Pop Tart box because Adam wore a Pop Tart shirt on the Pop Mart tour. Plus I have never actually gotten Adam’s autograph before. He stopped in front of me and I said, “Adam, would you please sign my Pop Tart box? Get it?” He smiled and said yes. Then I thanked him for coming out and greeting us – that we really appreciate it. He seemed really appreciative that I said that. While this was going on Bono arrived. Then all of a sudden Edge and Larry came walking out. Chaos set it. It was madness. People were pushing and shoving and screaming – our barricade almost fell over with us on top of it. All four guys signing and taking photos at once was a little much for this Chicago crowd to handle. When Larry came over to me. He said, “Hi!” Then I said, “May I please have a picture with you?” Larry said, “Yes of course!” He leaned in, put his arm on my shoulder and I took two selfies. It is VERY close up and I look goofingly happy and my bangs are blowing in the wind, but I finally got a picture with Larry – after 23 years of touring!!! Then as he was walking away I again thanked him for his drumsticks in Denver and again said “You’re very welcome.” My two goals have been reached for this tour. First in Denver, I showed Larry my book, gave him a copy of my book and then had him autograph a copy of my book. Second in Chicago, I finally got a picture with Larry! I couldn’t be more excited! I didn’t get a chance to say any of things I wanted to say to Bono because it got way too crazy, but that is ok because I got my picture with Larry! Larry then climbed up the hill and greeted all the fans standing behind the fence. It was so great that all four guys came out to greet everyone. It was definitely worth waiting there since 9:30am for them! What a Beautiful Day!
After I got in the Ride line. I was about the fifth person in line. I had toyed with the idea of maybe going to the main stage for the first time, just to get a different vantage point of the show because this would be my only opportunity since I am not going to line up in New York. Plus I thought U2 might play “40,” and I would love to be up front for Larry’s drum solo at the end. But when I entered the arena, I saw my spot on e stage. A spot I have wanted since Vancouver. It was literally right next to where Larry would be. If you’re looking at the e stage from the main stage, it’s at 3:00. U2’s second song was “Gloria” just as it had been exactly one week ago Thursday at Chicago2. I was expecting “Two Hearts Beat as One,” since they had sound checked last Sunday and Monday, but at least I got to hear it at the sound check Monday while waiting in the Ride line. Bono mentioned that it had been an amazing 10 days in Chicago. I have been here for 10 days too, and it certainly has been fantastic! I am very glad I didn’t try to go to the main stage. I was SO close to Larry! When he walked on the e stage during “Even Better Than the Real Thing,” he saw me and smiled and waved. U2 played “California,” which I hadn’t heard since Vancouver2. I liked it much better this time from the e stage. In Vancouver, U2 played it in the second spot from the main stage. It definitely fit better in the e stage set. When Larry was leaving the e stage, I got another smile and a wave. U2 played “Bad” with a verse from “Moment of Surrender,” just as they did exactly a week ago Thursday at Chicago2. The show ended with “40,” which was a perfect way to end these glorious five shows in Chicago. The audience kept singing “how long” even after U2 had left the arena – magical! Once again I didn’t take one picture during the show. I didn’t take any pictures the last three shows. It was quite freeing. I walked back with the crowds along Madison until I grabbed a cab right after the Beer Bistro, and I was in my hotel room just after 11:30. Please click here to see my photos from Chicago5.
Here is the complete set list from Chicago5 7.2.15 from u2gigs.com:
- The Miracle (Of Joey Ramone)
- Gloria / Van Morrison’s Gloria (snippet)
- Do You Remember Rock ‘n’ Roll Radio? (snippet) / Vertigo / God Save The Queen (Sex Pistols) (snippet)
- I Will Follow
- Iris (Hold Me Close)
- Cedarwood Road
- Song For Someone
- Sunday Bloody Sunday / When Johnny Comes Marching Home (snippet)
- Raised By Wolves / Psalm 23 (snippet)
- Until The End Of The World / Love And Peace Or Else (snippet)
- Even Better Than The Real Thing
- Mysterious Ways / Young Americans (snippet)
- California (There Is No End To Love)
- Ordinary Love
- Every Breaking Wave
- Bullet The Blue Sky
- The Hands That Built America (snippet) / Pride (In The Name Of Love)
- Beautiful Day / My Kind Of Town (snippet)
- Bad / Moment Of Surrender (snippet)
- With Or Without You
- City Of Blinding Lights
- Mother And Child Reunion (snippet) / Where The Streets Have No Name / California (There Is No End To Love) (snippet)
- Adam Raised A Cain (snippet) / 40
My 10 days in Chicago were amazing! I met SO many great people and made a lot of friends. We had two fantastic fan MeetUps at Pippins and Hard Rock. I took a fun two hour boat tour of the city, and ate a lot of deep dish pizza – every day in fact. First Uno’s, then Lou Malnati’s then Giordano’s. The five shows in Chicago were truly magnificent – definitely the loudest and more crowded of the shows I’ve been to this tour (more than Vancouver and Denver). I got to hear “The Crystal Ballroom” debut, “Lucifer’s Hands” for the first time (and only second time on the tour), “Elevation” for the first time on this tour for me, “Gloria” twice (and debut on the tour), “40,” “Bad” twice with “Moment of Surrender snippets and “Volcano” again. I did the Ride line for the last three shows, so I was able to hear “Two Hearts Beat as One” sound checked on Monday as well as “Gloria” and “Lucifer’s Hands” on Monday. Because of the Ride line, I was able to stand at the rail at the e stage for the last three shows, without waiting in the GA line. Sunday (Chicago3) I was at the corner of the runway and the e stage on the south side (i’m always on the south side). Actually I was one person back from the rail, but my friend Todd let me up on the rail for “Invisible” through the e stage set. Monday’s show (Chicago4) Anisha and I stood at the back of the e stage (at 12:00) on the rail. It was behind Larry, but a great view of the main stage. For Chicago5 last night, I stood on the rail at 3:00 right next to Larry. For the first two shows, I stood one person back of the rail at the end of the runway near the e stage, where the screen ends for the first show. For the second show, Sharon and Autumn stood on the rail at the e stage facing Larry – the best view of his drumming but not as close as my spot last night. I stood right behind them and they’re short, so it was like I was on rail. For these five shows, Larry did not wear my favorite blue shirt at any of the shows. He wore his red shirt twice and the grey checkered shirt for three. During these five shows in Chicago, I met Larry twice. First at Chicago2 Thursday June 25, shaking Larry’s hand and thanking him for his drumsticks in Denver. He was very smiley and appreciative. Then exactly one week later at Chicago5 July2 I finally got my picture with Larry!!! I also finally got Adam’s autograph.
My next and final U2ieTour shows will be in New York on July 18, 19, 26, 27, 30 and 31st (i’m skipping the 22nd and 23rd). I won’t need to wait out to meet the band, since I’ve reached all my goals for this tour. I have photos with Larry, Bono and Edge and I have autographs from all of them, so I’m good. I may show up around 3, stand in the back and just watch the madness from afar, but not more arriving at 9:30am waiting out all day. I am also not lining up in New York and Ride won’t be in New York. So I am just going to do what I did in Vancouver and Denver – just go in when the doors open, after the GA and just hang out in the back and move around during the show. It’s going to be very relaxed in New York – ironic.