So after 30 years, I finally got to hear the song I was obsessed with in the late 1980s and early 1990s, “RED HILL MINING TOWN” played live in concert in Chicago – and I cried all the way through it. Oh I wish I could go back and tell my 14 year old self this, so I would not have been SO upset I had to miss the Joshua Tree concert because I wasn’t allowed to go at just 14 years old. Besides “Red Hill Mining Town,” I also got to hear for the first time “Trip Through Your Wires” and “Exit” (as well as “Mothers of the Disappeared” but I have no real emotion about that).
I became a U2 fan when The Joshua Tree was released in 1987 when I was 14, and it was all I listened to constantly from 1987 to 1991 (along with Rattle and Hum) even after I had bought all their previous albums. Besides “I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For,” my favorites off The Joshua Tree are “Red Hill Mining Town” (I was obsessed with this song!), “Running to Stand Still,” “Trip Through Your Wires,” “In God’s Country,” and b-sides “Luminous Times” (my second favorite song – still gives me chills after all these years), “Walk to the Water,” “Deep in the Heart” and “Spanish Eyes.” I love the b-sides of The Joshua Tree as much as, if not more than, the songs that actually made it onto the album. The Joshua Tree was also all I watched for five years. I taped everything off MTV – documentaries, videos, concerts, award show appearances and interviews. My favorite is the first U2 I ever taped off tv, the documentary Outside It’s America– I know it by heart because I used to watch it everyday. The Joshua Tree is still my favorite album. It is truly a part of me. It is ingrained in me. Its songs are second nature to me. Like being home, they are comforting. The Joshua Tree changed my life.
Saturday June 3, 2017 my musical journey on the road with U2 continued in Chicago for The Joshua Tree 30th Anniversary Tour. I woke up at 5:30am est to make my 8:10am flight – not exactly ‘on the road.’ Had a great, easy flight and landed early. The flight attendant saw my shirt and asked me if I was with the Larry Mullen Band – i wish! My driver from Americar couldn’t have been nicer as he drove me to my hotel in Chinatown. I was checked into the Jaslin Hotel just a mile or so from Soldier Field before 11:30am cst waiting for my extra cheese deep dish pizza from Lou Malnati’s. (Note to self for next time, I think I prefer Giordano’s because there wasn’t enough cheese on Lou’s – it was half break, half cheese.) If you need a nice, clean, quiet hotel in Chicago and the ones downtown are either booked or too expensive, give the Jaslin Hotel a try. I was very impressed. Sharon picked me up around 12:30, and we were on our way to our first U2 Joshua Tree 2017 show!
We were parked and waiting for the band at 1pm – they didn’t arrive until almost 5:30 about 10 minutes after we left but only Bono stopped and it was brief apparently. We thought we saw Larry drive in around 3:30 but it wasn’t him as we would find out the next day. By 5:45 we were inside Soldier Field about to get our minds blown! Please click here for the full report on the first U2TheJoshuaTree2017 show in Chicago.
After being awake for 22 hours and standing for 11 of those hours, I slept for about 4 hours but stayed in bed resting until about 11am. Ate some leftover not extra cheese pizza and Sharon picked me up again for day 2 of U2 in Chicago. We were parked and waiting for the band to arrive by around 1:15pm. There were less people than the previous day and the whole vibe was much more relaxed (or I was just really tired). We actually sat though – learned our lesson. I sat (literally not moving) for almost 4 hours talking with friends old and new. Around 4 or 4:30 the car came by with the fake Larry, but this Larry is someone with the tour because the same U2 security lady came out and they wouldn’t let people cross in preparation for his arrival. But it was not Larry because at 5:30, Bono, Adam, Edge and Larry all drove in and their windows were very dark in the back but Larry’s bodyguard was in the front. We walked into Soldier Field at around 5:45 again. Please click here for all the details on the second U2TheJoshuaTree2017 show in Chicago.
We were back at the hotel by 12:30 or a little earlier. I slept for only two or three hours then got my America back to Midway Airport for my flight home. I was at the airport way too early for my flight – arrived at 9:40am for an 11:45am flight. But I was too tired to care. I was home before 3pm and exhausted but happy to be reunited with my dogs! Next stop Pittsburgh!
Please click here for all my photos from U2 in Chicago.