Joshua Tree

Apr 2 1987
Tempe, AZ, US / Arizona State University Activity Center
with Lone Justice
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How far we’ve come…
Hoping to bless the band: I was 17 in ‘87. Before going w some friends from school to the April 2 show (in Scotts trashed VW van) , it had become clear to me over the prior year how rock music -in general then and before- was persuading generations w easily seductive messages about life and how it should be lived. To give so many the false identity they carried and wrote about. But I could tell U were genuinely different. Still, there came a judgment of U, for not fitting in the American Protestant church’s mold for them, the only prism I had at the time. Despite all of that burden, I just remember becoming a fan that April night, and enjoying my friends that I had been fairly estranged toward (private). Soon after, I projected what for me seemed to be the fine line you all drew, or walked? To weave in hints of the biblical ethics that matter: humility, our need for Jesus, honoring old scriptures in a new way, relentless value for all humanity regardless of its condition. A delicate appreciation was forming, where I had faulted U for not speaking directly in preaching fashion. And now, after all this time, You’ve done so much, perhaps reluctantly in some cases. But It all speaks for itself. By the end of 1987, I was a freshman in college and went all alone to the Dec 20 show. It still feels like an honor to have been there. Well. You’ve been thanked by the influential, the lowly, the poorest of the poor and oppressed. I wish I had more time and room to unpack the place U occupy in a strangers life. My sincere hope is that your collective peace and joy increase, and an increase revelation of things eternal playing out on earth in these unparalleled times. You seem trustworthy. It seems your voice of freedom from oppression may be needed now more than ever.
It was a magical night
The first show of the tour was a magical night. Bono lost his voice but the crowd belted out every word to every song. So glad I was there. His voice was back for show number two and it was great, but there was really something very emotional and special about that first night.
Joshua Tree Phase One
There was so much anticipation building up to ths show. I was a student at Arizona State University then. U2 arrived about a week before the opening night to practice inside the ASU Activities Center. Every day after class my friends and I would sit outside and listen to them. The day before opening night a member of their tour staff came over and invited us in to watch. It was wonderful! We got to stay for about an hour and saw them run through about six songs. The night of the first show Bono had lost his voice. it was so sad after seeing how hard he had worked to prepare. He made it through the show getting the audience to help sing along with a good percentage of the songs. It was a very unique night.
December 19, 1987
I was actually at the shows on December 19 and 20 in 1987 in Tempe, the third leg of the tour, but those were the last two dates of the tour. They were filming Rattle and Hum, which made for a very slow concert. They kept stopping in the middle of songs to re-shoot. Over all, it was still a good show. As usual, Bono got on his high-horse about apartheid, but we all expected that now, didn't we.
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