I LOVE concerts, especially outdoor concerts. This one had been in the planning stages since November 2010. And then the concert ticket became a Christmas/birthday gift – thanks Jen!
As usually happens when one makes plans far ahead, the weekend suddenly becomes a much busier weekend than anticipated. But I made it to St. Louis by early Sunday afternoon. Road tripping in Smurfette was a lot of fun. She reached 140k on the odometer during this trip, and we did not contribute to the state of Missouri’s (or Illinois’, even though they could use it) state coffers.
This was the hottest date of the U2 360 tour – even beating out Nashville. I was ready with my sweet Ray Bans, sun dress, sunscreen, and minimal makeup. Busch Stadium was packed!
We had general admission tickets, so a couple of us meandered our way to the 5th row from the outer catwalk/stage and made friends with some hard core Metallica guys. I advise everyone to seek out some tough guys to stand near when you are on the concert floor. Build repoire pre-concert, and you won’t regret it. We didn’t need their services, as the crowd was pretty tame, but you just never know. One of my new-found friends once retrieved a flip flop for me in the middle of a mosh pit in Houston. (And I still wear flip flops to outdoor concerts!)
I am a concert snob of sorts. I have touched Steven Tyler’s hand, been within reach of Jon Bon Jovi, and could see the pores in Counting Crows’ Adam Duritz’s face. So while my previous U2 concert in Chicago’s Soldier Field was fabulous even from the nosebleeds, I was ready to be close to the stage.
Interpol opened, and I was impressed. Then the sun went down, the lights came on, and Bono came out. All of my cares melted (literally!) away, as they always do when great live music captivates me.
Their song set was very similar to Chicago in 2009, and they once again played my favorite song “With or Without You” as the finale. And it wouldn’t be a U2 concert without some changing the world action call. ONE volunteers were recognized, Astronaut Mark Kelly had a message from outer space broadcast on the big screen, and the plight of Burmese activist Aung San Suu Kyi was highlighted. Interesting that during the Chicago concert she had been in jail, and this time she is semi-free. For how long though, no one knows.
I can easily become annoyed when rock stars promote political views, even though I am a self-declared political hack. I’m there for the music, and that is it. However, U2 relays their message in a classy all-we-need-is-love way.
While the trip to St. Louis was a very quick one, it was totally worth it. Next concert on deck: Gin Blossoms in Downtown Davenport on August 19!