As everybody knows U2 played at the Somerville Theatre in Davis Square last night. It was an invitation-only show: you could either be in the band’s or the promoter’s network or you could win at contests that radio stations had going on last week. I tried to call to a couple of radio stations, but of course no luck. The venue was held secret up to the last minute, but one day before the show when crews were carrying gear and the road behind the theatre was closed, it wasn’t so secret anymore.
I walked to Davis yesterday afternoon and it was very calm. I had to get back to work, but it was very easy to follow the action on-line. Local reporters were tweetering about everything, and local blogs were instantly uploading photos and video. Constant updates on facebook and constant tweets made me feel like I was there: “they are here”, “they are shooting a video” etc etc
A little before 9pm I walked to the square again and the scene wasn’t as crazy as I would expect it to be. Joshua Tree and the Burren were very busy. People gathered behind barricades across the street from the theater, as if waiting for Bono to come out of the front door and say hi. I noticed that “U2” didn’t appear on the theatre marquee, that would have been a cool photo! Anyway, when the buses arrived carrying the lucky ones who would attend, I walked through them, and they were holding their special tickets in a way that I felt the urge to snatch one or two. But the security all around was tough and mean-looking, making me abort my last-resort plan to sneak into the theater by pretending I am a custodian, who does not speak English. Oh, well.
Then I made my way at the back door of the theater. I tried to sneak in in the press area, it worked for 5 minutes, until a security guy noticed. I found a good spot to stand with clear view of the band’s SUVs. The driver of one of the cars was nice enough to tune to a radio station that was broadcasting the show live and blast it, so we could hear what was going on inside. Hey, we were part of it, yay! They played, I don’t know, 5 or 6 songs and then there was a brutal Q&A session, where Adam admitted that it’s cool to sit back and let two people do the work, and that if he wasn’t a musician he would like to be a fashion photographer…
That was done at around 10pm. Excitment was building up, there were going to come out any time now, right? Wrong. Well, it felt like it took them ages to come out; the wind was picking up and my fingers turned numb. I don’t know what time they finally made their exit, a little after 10:30pm, I think. First Bono came out and came towards our area, greeting fans, then Adam and right behind him the Edge. They were all smiling. Larry made it out a little later. It’s funny but these days when you see celebrities the first thing you do is point a camera or cell phone with a camera at their face. It’s like we’re not really seeing and experiencing anymore, we’re instantly documenting. Myself guilty as charged.
Anyway, it was cool to see them from up close, it was cool that they played in my neighborhood. U2 was at the Somerville Theatre in Davis Square, Somerville. How cool!