12 May 2001
Show Day: Chicago - United Center, 1st nightDecember 5th. 2001
Chicago is home to a huge Irish population, so U2 shows here have always been pretty extraordinary. I worked out that this is the twentieth time U2 have played in the Chicago area, and the show rocked. Some nights, this being one, the crowd noise is so loud that I feel my head swimming. How on earth Joe manages to mix the live sound over such a huge volume of ambient noise is beyond me. It'd be like trying to do a light show in broad daylight. But then I've done that a few times, now I come to think about it.
After the show I found my way to the hotel bar where a group of familiar faces were gathering. Some of these faces turned out to be familiar for reasons beyond them belonging to tour staff, as Bono, Sting and Billy Joel were having a drink at the other end of my table. (For some reason this made me laugh - it felt like the opening line of a joke "So...Bono, Sting and Billy Joel walk into a bar...")