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Snow Patrol have played more dates with U2 on the 360 Tour than anyone else and they're back for three more in Mexico this week.

Singer and mainman Gary Lightbody, who first wrote us this great piece after the show in Poland in 2009,  again mused  on life on the road with U2 ahead of the Istanbul show  last Autumn: 'A good time to say our thank yous
for a tour like no other.'


'We are not U2. That is one of the things you learn from touring with them. We may have an amazing experience entertaining their audience on their stage but we are merely borrowing their space and time. We may think ourselves pretty damn special walking off that stage some nights, most nights truth be told, to the cheers and the raised arms of a crowd won over. We may think ourselves indestructible and we may think ourselves, as my father would say, quite the thing. We'll go back to the dressing room and hug each other as we do (we're friends you know) and talk of the battle victorious and 'did you see the girl with the banner that said 'something something snow patrol something' and I'll take a shower and in fresh socks and pants consider myself king of the castle. Then, buffed and shined, I'll find my way to the mixing desk in time to see four men from Dublin stride out onto the circular and towering stage we have not but half an hour ago graced.

Then comes the noise and the lights and heartbeat in my throat and the arms aloft in front of me of a heaving crowd at worship and I think to myself - EVERY SINGLE TIME I SEE IT - I think... FUCK ME!

No, we are not U2.

We are Snow Patrol and we are on tour with the biggest band on planet earth. Except we're not for much longer. So I thought it a good time to say our thank yous for a tour like no other with some of the finest people we have met in music. The band, their crew, their management, the caterers, everyone on the tour are all the finest sorts of people. The kind that welcome folk, folk like us I mean, (I'll stop with the cowboy talk now) with the kind of ease, grace and humour as we've rarely experienced. We've supported many bands before. Many have treated us right well too (Supergrass, Travis, Grandaddy, Athlete, to name but a few), some that did not (nameless they'll remain but you're curious I can sense. I'll never tell. Even under torture. Actually under torture I'll tell. In fact I'll tell with just the threat of torture but not now).

It is those that did not treat us well though that make it all the more incredible that U2 treat their supports with such warmth. If the biggest band in the world does it like this then EVERY BAND should. We have pretty much modelled our ethos on theirs and to an extent our music too (some would argue a little too closely, ha) and we have learned so much from seeing it all happening up close. They've had plenty praise, and justified too, from far greater men than me though so I'd like to simply say we'll never forget this 360 tour and thank you guys - Larry, Adam, The Edge and Bono - for making room on your spaceship. It's been magical.

A massive thank you to all the crew who looked after us and our own crew like we were part of the family. I know our boys and girls on the SP crew would want me to say how much you've helped them and made things so easy and seamless. You're all fucking legends. A special mention has to go to Rocko who, given half the chance, we'd steal and keep forever as our fearless leader. My friend you are our brother for always.
 
Thank you also to Paul, Susan, all the management and all the beautiful ladies that work for the guys. You're all amazing. I've never seen anyone work so god damn hard! Thank you so much for everything. And to the people that have fed us every show for off and on a year now. My god did we eat like kings? Did we ever. We're sure gonna miss solid food.

Also a huge thank you to all the U2 fans that gave us the time of day. It's a tricky thing to go on before them because we know how long the people in front of us have waited and we are the only other hurdle before their prize. That being said every crowd, everywhere, has treated us brilliantly. You've sung and cheered and shown us love. We'll maybe see some of you along the way at our own shows.

Friday night in Athens I finally got (took me long enough!) why Bono is fond of saying 'What time is it?' and 'Where are we going now?' in between songs. They have created a show, an experience, that seems to lift off from the ground and take you on a wild, woozy ride through time and space. It is, though, no blissed out acid trip, quite the opposite. It is a galvanising, humanising journey with 80,000 other people all sharing the same ride and becoming closer for the sound, feel, touch and thrill of it.

I was, each night, as thrilled as anyone in the audience to bear witness. When I think back on this tour the one image that will resonate with me til I die is that of the upturned thumbs and fingers and green ribboned hands making the heart sign as the opening, rallying drums of Sunday Bloody Sunday thunder out. That 'heart in the hands' is the symbol for this whole experience for me. It is our last show tomorrow night in Istanbul and we are very sad to be leaving but we'll carry the heart of this tour with us gently in our hands. Again, and forever, thank you.


Gary Lightbody, Bangor, Co. Down, now aged 34, still overwhelmed.x

COMMENTS

41
nkokic
02 March, 2014
Amazing Snow Patrol!
I thank U2 every day for bringing this beauty in my life. Snow Patrol are just amazing, emotional and inspirational....and so cool. I can’t wait to see SP again.
BarbaroHassard
11 May, 2011
MY GOD
I was on 360 at Boston on September 2009. Snow Patrol has the opening and it was greaT. Of course this May 14th I will be at the Azteca and its great to know that the experience would be AWESOME WITH THEM AGAIN
utsa2004
09 May, 2011
You are an AMAZING BAND
I can tell you Gary, I have not heard anything about your band just before shows in Chicago 2009. I am a big U2 fan, but I got hooked by Snow Patrol music the whole night. It was a great surprise. After I bought almost all your songs, and live concerts. I think as U2, Snow Patrol is great performing Live. And you what, I´ll have the privilege to see you again this saturday in Mexico City. Am I lucky? Just attending a concert with two of the best bands today!
jensi
16 September, 2010
Thank YOU!! And a story about a five yea
Gary, thank you for this loveletter of a farewell note! I just want to share a little thing with you in return, hope you get the chance to read it. I saw you and your amazing band for the first time in Götheborg last year and shortly after the concert, I bought the Eyes Open album - great one! I heard it a lot in the car and my son who at that time was four years old soon refused to listen to anything else. "Dady, Snou Patrou!" So I was more than happy, when I heard that SP was to be the warm up act again this year in Horsens, just 40 or so ks from home. And what a warm up you delivered! I bought a SP T-shirt for my son - it's size S and about as big as he is long - and he has used it as a night - shirt every single night since then... By the way: By now my two year old daughter also sings along to the first lines of "You're all I have"... ;o) Thanx for two great shows and for quite som hours in the car...
sister_moonshine
16 September, 2010
Amazing band
Gary, I saw u in Istanbul and I've become a fan since then! u and ur band are great... hope to see & hear u again
eilev
16 September, 2010
Snow Patrols are legends too
Gary, I hope you read this. I heard you before the first show in Horsens, Denmark and you guys were absolutely brilliant. When I learned that you were going to be the warm up act, I was so excited about the fact that such big stars weren't too full of themselves to fill that role, but having heard you that night and having now read your wonderful thank you note, I am in awe. You truly have a wonderful and humble character. You left the best possible impression that night in Horsens and I wish you and your band all the best in the future. Hope I'll hear you again.
TessalooU2
15 September, 2010
new fan
I had never hear Snow Patrol before the Chicago Concert last Fall, now I am a fan. I really enjoyed your music and felt it was a perfect hot hors d'oeuvre before the entree....an hors d'oeuvre I plan to make into a meal in the future. Looking forward to seeing you here in the U.S. on your own terms! Appreciate your music and your heart, as written above!
13 September, 2010
farewell in Istanbul
Hello Snow Patrol, I must admit I had not listened to you before the U2 concert in Istanbul. But then I realized what wonderful songs you have! I read your letter to the audience about stopping supporting U2 and how it affects you. I also listened to your comments on the Istanbul show, too. I can guess what it is not to be so sure... You don't know who the people come for... Well I was there for U2.. But now I'm grateful to U2 for introducing you to me.. What I'm trying to say is that do not underestimate your music! Yours is strong too... To be honest I was not aiming to discover new bands because of my age -40- but then I realized what I miss by not following things related to music... well words are not enough...You've made a big bunch of people your admirers, too... Please be sure you are great, too! Thank you for your sincerity, red-white shirt issue :-)) and everythig you said about us! You're always welcome to Istanbul!
09 September, 2010
Overwhelmed, too
I was one of the fans who had been waiting for U2 in my hometown for all my life. When they finally announced concerts in Zagreb last year (two nights in a row!), somebody tried to warn me how you and your SP guys were worth coming themselves. But I was like „Just get me Bono on the stage, so I can be sure that it is not a dream!” That’s why the strong positive vibe that hit me while you were playing was such a big, though wonderful surprise. I was OVERWHELMED and the great show did not even start... The rest is history. See you on one of your shows xx
clare74
09 September, 2010
Thank you!
For me Istanbul was the best performance from Snow Patrol I've seen as a support for U2- looked like a lot of fun up there and we really enjoyed watching it too. Thanks, guys... there have been some pretty terrible supports for U2 over the years but you hit the nail on the head!
08 September, 2010
Showtime!
Thank you from Greece!
liljbau
07 September, 2010
GREAT GROUP!!!
one of the TOP opening acts I've EVER SEEN- up to higher heights now with those eloquent, gracious words about THE TOP ACT IN THE WORLD!!!! ALL THE BEST to Snow Patrol!!! Cheers!!!
Aella
07 September, 2010
Snow Patrol Love Athens and Athens love
here in athens we surelly had a great time with you!!! we loved your songs, we loved your show and your performance but most of all your kind faces that nowdays we not see very often. You are an amazing group and I hope that soon you will visit us again! From my heart all the best for you and remember that everyone has his own different story...hope your story will be as you want it to be!!
collectoraholic
07 September, 2010
Snow Patrol
I didn't get to see you on the 360 Tour, so I'm hoping by the grace of God, or maybe U2, you'll be asked back to do some of the North American leg next year. I'd love to see you in Anaheim, Montreal or to end it all in Minneapolis. *fingers crossed* Cheers! Terri from TX
u2liftmysoul
06 September, 2010
just the right words
Once again, Gary, you have summed up the 360 Tour experience perfectly!! Thank you for your performances on the tour, and your pieces of writing-- you've helped make my 360 experience an extra bit more magical!!
armi23
06 September, 2010
i <3 Snow Patrol!
garyL is such a great singer/song writer/frotntman of one of my favorite bands of all time. Glad you guys at SP had a great time supporting a great band as U2. Been a massive fan of U2 since 1987 (I was 11 years old!) Can't wait to hear your new album. I'll be seeing you with Tired Pony in NY in October. Can't wait!!
stevebass68
06 September, 2010
Great live!
Thanks from two scots for making Chicago2 last year a wonderful night. We were really hoping to see you again in Seville..A hard Act for Interpol to follow! :-)
armi23
06 September, 2010
i <3 Snow Patrol!
garyL is such a great singer/song writer/frotntman of one of my favorite bands of all time. Glad you guys at SP had a great time supporting a great band as U2. Been a massive fan of U2 since 1987 (I was 11 years old!) Can't wait to hear your new album. I'll be seeing you with Tired Pony in NY in October. Can't wait!!
garyu
06 September, 2010
Not U2 but nobody could be!!!
amazing letter by you Gary.you express your feelings of wonder fantastically.now you know how we feel when get the chance to see these four alchemists at work.You are on tour with the biggest band around but these guys are unique from every band there ever has been.The Beatles musically have few peers but they couldn't achieve longevity.The Stones have the longevity but ceased to be relevant years ago.i feel blessed that i have had the privilige to have lived my life with U2 being a massive part since 1984.i hope they will always be around,life wouldn't be the same without them.
claudiadv
06 September, 2010
you're not so far from them!
if there is one band close to get to the height u2 are in international music scene, this is snow patrol. i was in milan last year and totally caught by their powerful sound, passion and big joyful smiles!! i think you are better live than on record (though your albums are definitely some of the best of the last decade), so i'm travelling from italy to dublin to see you at arthur's day (fingers crossed to find tickets)... need to say more?
El Baudiñho
06 September, 2010
Zoolov
Thanks Snow Patrol, you are truly the best support act I have ever seen. So good that I now consider myself a Snow Patrol fan. Will catch you next time in Sweden. Love your music, so keep on!
eleslane
06 September, 2010
Not U2 but really great!!
Hi Gary, thank you for this overwhelming letter :) I first saw Snow Patrol performing as U2 supporters in Croke Park on July 2005, and yes I was coming a long way from Italy and waiting since a number of hours to see U2 but you really hit me for something special, in your voice and in the songs, and Dubliners people singing your songs....when I was back home I bought your CD, than I bought the second album some years later, when I was back unders U2 stage in Milano last year I was so Happy to see you again playing!!! This time I sang all your songs :) Yes, I promise, you'll see me at your own shows next time, and yes there is nothing on earth like partecipating to U2 shows! it is simply love made solid!
biowoman
06 September, 2010
Great show, great guys!
I ve watched your show in Athens and you were great! I thought that u must be great guys too (except great musicians of course) and now as i am reading your post i don't think, i am sure that u are great guys! Maybe you are not U2 (yet) as u said, but we were running like crazy to be in time for your show! Thank u !
05 September, 2010
Anticipation...
the excitement is killing me!this will be the FIRST time I see both Snow patrol and U2 live in concert ;) flew up from south africa yesterday - in dubai now waiting for a flight to istanbul will literally arrive and head to the stadium ;) it's gonna be a rock show of a lifetime!
ToddWilliamson
05 September, 2010
Snow Patrol
i am so torn that Snow Patrol are not coming to new zealand. i saw Snow Patrol live back in 2007 but they haven't come back since and it woulda been hella cool to see U2 and Snow Patrol live together in concert. Gary is such a character. anyway, sounds like you had fun on tour with U2 (:
jikjen
05 September, 2010
Chicago
It was a pleasant surprise to hear you open the US tour in Chicago last year. My two favorite bands in one night was absolutely incredible. Denver next spring, please?
hapy
05 September, 2010
space and time...
Excellent explanation, indeed! I agree, thanks to the Einsteins of life rock music (also known as U2) we have learned a lot about spacetime. And we are still looking forward to learn more.
robbiebluegene
05 September, 2010
Snow Patrol
I was lucky enough to be at the 2 opening nights of the whole tour in Barcelona last year when Snow Patol supported so brilliantly........and again on Friday night when again they took the crowd with them in Athens....i sit here in my hotel room in Istanbul looking forward to experiencing their brillliance again as they hot the crowd up for one last time on this amazing 360 tour......i have just read the piece by Gary L and i have to say it moved me a long way from where i was when i started reading it......thank you all round for that and i don't often forward things in emails but i just sent it on to significant people in my life so they can grasp a little of what it feels like to be sitting where I am now and to have been sitting where i have been and where i will be tomorrow night.....it is all AMAZING and Snow Patrol's increasing brilliant success is INEVITABLE as is U2's eternal place in our hearts...thank you to EVERYONE for EVERYTHING!!!!!!!!!
Irish Universe
05 September, 2010
Tears in my eyes...
... after reading your wonderful reflection of your unforgettable time with the boys. What a heartwarming piece. I saw you many times last year and it was truly the best support act I've ever seen. So I decided to see your own show in Berlin this year. It was a great show!!! Thank you! No, you are not U2, no other band will be like our four boys, but Snow Patrol ist a GREAT band in their own way. I wish you all the best and hope to see you soon.
Siggie
05 September, 2010
siggie
thank you, having just read that i could sense the respect.... love Snow Patrol, just not quite as much as U2!!!
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