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by hosive tsang

Ill avoid the most obvious clich but tonight was a love letter from bono to this soulful city; a thank you and a reminder of what this city has meant for the band in a way that is not obvious and easy to forget.

There are some nights that bono is more interactive; looser with the crowd. He sees the crowd and reacts. Tonight was a night like that as he was intent on drawing in the audience. He was ready to play as in being playfulas when he brought on stage the tattoo man(a dude with the Joshua tree and song titles on his back)and changed the lyrics to beautiful day to accommodate: see tattoo man(china)right in front of you. Or when he took a cowboy hat from the audience and put it on. Or when he snapped a picture from the stage for fans. Or when he brought a girl on for not just mysterious ways but also a rare with or without you. He was engaging the city of Philadelphia.

Maybe fresh off msg/nyc, bono was spoiled by the immediate and tireless response by the crowd. He seemed to expect the same attentiveness but bono had to lead and goad a bit. During pride, the singing died down but he kept at it with the crowd, motioning with his hands to come on. During mysterious ways he had them waving side to side with one arm. He kept prodding the city.he thought he had them and he did for most of the encore until Yahweh when they were reluctant to sing even though he thrust the mike out. Too new a song? Spoiled by the garden? Fuzzy memories of the city?

Most of the crowd was excellent but I sat in a section where most people sat! they looked like they were ready to leave! And they did, right after the first encore! But philly represented well and got the love from the band.

The reason for the love? Bono explained during one that 20 years ago, this city hosted live aidan incredible day for the band and the world. It changed the direction of the band forever. Fast forward to a year ago: the one campaign met in philly? He met a giant and great man:dikembe motumbo, a former philly 76erthis drew cheers and boos. Philly fans are hard on their sports legendseven their own hall of famer 3rd baseman mike Schmidt and santa claus were booed once and cowboy Michael irving injured and in a neck brace was cheered! Bono responds: I know, I know.he doesnt play for philly anymore. (reminds me of the post sept 911 notre dame concert where he mentions last time he was in Chicago: I know, I knowbut Chicago is nearby) philly has been a turning point in the bands history and the current one campaign. Hence the love.

There was a lot of love flying around. Kings of leon got a better response. They said that they played here recently and(tonight)we were a helluva lot better. Caleb said that they dont talk that much cause they dont have a lot of time but he was awfully proud to be on stage with his little brother, big brother and his cousin. I think thats jared on bass, nathan on drums and matthew on guitar. Later, bono calls the kings of leon a great American rock and roll band. Much love.

nelson mandelas name is reinstated into the African introduction of streets as opposed to last night when it was kofi annans Africa. But thats a different town.

This is where I get off the tour and my spectacular breaking of lent. After no u2 for 50 days, a bunch of shows where I feel like this is all I do. On my end, U2 ends it appropriately with their worship set which I havent gotten lately with all the vertigo and bad business: all because of you(I am), Yahweh and 40.

The tour has become a very tight and entertaining set(with some variety) where the new songs are now canon. See you all in the fall, ironically waiting for those crumbs from their table.

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