April 18, 1985 - Worcester, Massachusetts, USA - The Centrum

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Opening Act(s): Lone Justice


Gloria, I Threw A Brick - A Day Without Me, I Fall Down, MLK, The Unforgettable Fire, Two Hearts Beat As One, Seconds, Sunday Bloody Sunday, The Cry, The Electric Co., A Sort Of Homecoming, Bad - Norwegian Wood - Ruby Tuesday - Sympathy for the Devil, October, New Year's Day, Pride (In The Name Of Love). Encore(s): Party Girl, I Will Follow, 40.


At this show, Bono adds a bit of 'Dear Prudence' in the transition from I Threw a Brick to A Day Without Me, and throws off the band's timing as he does it. Bono brings an entire family on stage for Party Girl. The son is having a birthday, and Bono gives him a black hat and a red balloon as gifts. He also brings out a bottle of champage and shares it with the parents. I Fall Down, I Threw A Brick and A Day Without Me are all performed for the final time ever.

Fan Review:

By Bill Burke

I wasn't particularly a U2 fan at the time, but this show made me a fanatic.

The band came out on stage and opened with 'Gloria.' From there it was a powerhouse set, including 'October,' 'Electric Co.,' and an amazing version of 'Bad.'

The set list alone blew me away, but more importantly, for me it was the first and most powerful example of how U2 creates an intimate atmosphere. (Any of these quotes are probably not exact since it was more than 20 years ago, but they're close.)

At one point, Bono brought a little boy up onstage with him. During 'Seconds' he put him up on his shoulders and skipped around the stage singing. At the false-ending ("I wanna be an Air Force Ranger") the song stopped and a blinding light burned the image of Bono and the boy into my retina for a few seconds. The boy had his hands in the air and was making the peace sign.

I forget the exact order of things, but I think it was at this point - Bono turned a stage monitor on its side and sat the boy on it. He sang 'Amazing Grace' to him, and I swear I looked around and saw people getting misty-eyed. It was an amazingly powerful moment.

When the song was over, Bono tossed his microphone to the family a few rows back. He asked what the young boy's name was. "Ever Peaceful" his father said, to which Bono replied, "That's about the best name I've ever heard." Bono said he wanted an "Ever Peaceful gift" before the end of the set.

The concert went on... Near the end they played 'Party Girl.' For some reason, I just didn't know the song at the time. It turns out I was about the only person in the Worcester Centrum who didn't know it. Everyone sang along - just like on 'Under a Blood Red Sky.' Everyone but me, that is.

At the end of the night, Bono brought the boy and his family back up on stage. The boy was handed a box and he opened it. He reached inside and pulled out the black hat Bono used to wear back then. "There's only one of those," he said. And as it turns out, I never saw him wearing it again. I think he had a balloon tied to it, too. Then the boy reached in and pulled out a bottle of champagne and held it high. Bono laughed and said, "That's for your parents."

The show ended with '40.' Edge played bass and Adam played guitar. One by one the band members left, and the crowd continued singing long after the concert was over. As a friend and I walked to our car in a nearby lot, people flooding out of the Centrum and into the street continued singing it. I had never seen anything like it.

And while I've seen many U2 shows since, this one stands out as the most profoundly moving.

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This page contains a single entry by Jonathan published on April 18, 1985 5:57 PM.

April 16, 1985 - Worcester, Massachusetts, USA - The Centrum was the previous entry in this blog.

April 19, 1985 - Worcester, Massachusetts, USA - The Centrum is the next entry in this blog.

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