University of Chicago, Chicago, IL, USA

Set List of Show:

Main Set:

  • "The Ocean"
  • "11 O'Clock Tick Tock"
  • "I Will Follow"
  • "An Cat Dubh"
  • "Into the Heart"
  • "Another Time, Another Place"
  • "The Electric Co."
  • "Things to Make and Do"
  • "Stories for Boys"
  • "Boy / Girl"
  • "Out of Control"
  • "Twilight"

  • "I Will Follow"
  • "A Day Without Me"
  • "11 O'Clock Tick Tock"
  • "The Ocean"

Additional Music

Snippets of Other Songs Performed by U2:

    "Frère Jacques" (Jean-Philippe Rameau) / "Cry" (U2) / "Send in the Clowns" (Stephen Sondheim from A Little Night Music) /

Show Details:

U2 play a show at the University of Chicago at the International House, a residence at the campus. The venue’s name was shortened to the I-House on posters and a print ad running in the Maroon, the university newspaper. The show was booked by Bart Lazar, and was part of the school’s Summer Breeze festival celebrating the arrival of spring on campus prior to exams.

Bono was dressed in red plaid pants, with a black turtleneck and black blazer. The Edge wore jeans with a red and black shirt and a grey blazer. Adam wore a long sleeved striped shirt in green and grey with jeans.

The band had been booked prior to the release of Boy in the USA, based on strong reports in the UK press. The show was a sell out, and Lazar reports that “people were actually trying to climb through the windows at I-House to get in.”

The ad lists U2, “The Talk of the Town” and says the show will also be starring “beer, dancing, beer”. No opening act is mentioned. The show was listed with a start time of 8:30pm. Admission for the show was a low $1 in total, and that included free beer for those attending, which lead to a rowdy crowd.

Snippets during the show include “Frere Jacques” as part of “11 O’Clock Tick Tock”, and the usual “Cry” / “Send in the Clowns” inclusions in “The Electric Co.” He also sings some alternate lines at the start of “Twilight” that remain unidentified.

Lazar discussed how U2 ended up at the show with the Global Voices program at the University of Chicago. “Over the three years that I’d been doing booking for the Major Activities Board, I’d developed relationships with booking agents in New York. We [had] started off going through middlemen, [but] then I developed a relationship [with] this guy, George Cavato, at Premier Talent, who I booked the Ramones and the B-52’s through. He was willing to give me first shot at a top band from Europe, and I presented that band to the Board. It was low-priced, $2,500. I knew they would be successful, [but] the Board worried about whether an unproven band from Europe would be successful in the United States…They were basically relying on the views of New Music Express and my word. And so the Board passed on that band, and that band was The Pretenders. And about six weeks later, The Pretenders hit United States, their first album was very popular, at least at the college level…And the people on the Board were going, “Can we still get The Pretenders?” and I was saying, “No, that’s the whole point.” The next concert? Lazar went to the same booking agent, and this time the Board listened. “another band from Europe that I thought would probably be successful, but I probably didn’t think they were gonna be as successful as The Pretenders. But I presented the same situation to the group, and they listened to me that time, and that was U2. [Their] first album hadn’t been released in the United States, this was the first tour, [and] they charged us $1,500. It was so low that we weren’t even risking that much. We were able to put them on in I-House, charge a dollar admission, and include free beer…That’s the long story of how U2 came to the University of Chicago.”

Bono was interviewed the following day on WNVR radio and says he was impressed by the audience the night before. “What I was impressed with last night was, and this is very important to us, is that we were playing to an audience who basically didn’t know who the hell we were and that they were making up their minds before our eyes. I can see them making up their minds. And I’m seeing it dawn on them that the music isn’t what they see…”

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