'One touch and annihilation...'
Sunday 25th October 2009. Los Angeles. Show day.
Today was not an unambitious day, even by U2 standards, with the Rosebowl show being shot for DVD and streamed live on YouTube in its entirety. As it happened, very little went wrong and many of the intangible factors ended up playing very much in our favour. First and foremost, the venue turned out to be ideal for the 360 show in two ways. It's an old stadium, so is almost entirely composed of seats, rather than the acres of corporate boxes that are the fashion these days. These glass-fronted boxes are death for acoustics, but also break up the mass of the audience in an unattractive way.
Here at the Rosebowl it's all seating and the seats are small and jammed together meaning you can get a huge number of people in here (96,000 I heard). Perhaps it was this mass proximity, but for some reason tonight's audience was as far from the traditionally cool 'L.A. crowd' as you can imagine. They really went off and looked great too which was a huge bonus.
Half of Hollywood was present of course, but there was only one guest who I made a point of going to meet. Buzz Aldrin had come to the show and I found him in the hospitality area, where I introduced myself and shook the hand of a man who'd walked on the moon. He was very polite though was a little distracted as he desperately wanted to meet Paris Hilton who had just arrived. This he did and the two were photographed together (it's funny, you'd think that would be like intellectual matter and anti-matter - one touch and they'd annihilate, taking the universe down with them). I did chuckle though, Buzz Aldrin and Paris Hilton. I guess when you've walked on the moon it's OK to lower your ambitions a little bit.
The rest of the night is history and available for your viewing pleasure on YouTube. It all went remarkably well, although as soon as we were locked and loaded at the top of the show I could feel myself starting to get sick. We've been building up to tonight for a long time and once we were under starters orders the adrenaline dropped and all hell broke loose. I was very happy that all had gone well, but even by the time I got back to the hotel I just wanted to curl up under the duvet and die. Hey ho.