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Old 06-20-2002, 01:23 PM   #1
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Why would Larry say this?

Do you remember the "jukebox" comment he made? Towards the end of the LoveTown Tour when he said to Bono he was tired and he was sick of feeling like the human jukebox, just getting up there and performing all the wanted U2 songs, and how it was feeling like work..

well I was looking through some of the setlists from the LoveTown tour.. and they actually were quite varied. Some songs rotated in and out consistently and different songs opened up the show (imagine Bullet opening now ). You compare that to Zooropa or Zoomerang especially where each night every song, every Order was the same with the exception of which snippet Bono would sing after Angel Of Harlem. Then even to Elevation where now they have tons of songs to choose from, but the setlist is fairly consistent and unvaried. (i'm not interested in why etc about the setlist..getting to the point lol)

I'm wondering WHY did it bother him then rather than any other point? What was in the LoveTown Tour that got him so antsy and annoyed and had touring feel like work and not fun to him? It seems out of all the tours that one had the most variation oddly enough! I've never heard any sentiment expressed about any of the other tours (besides Zoo being grueling, but that's just cuz of the length- he never said he felt like a jukebox)

Do you think it was because of all the press they were getting? Nerves from being so big and getting boxed into something? Afraid people were expecting "too much" going to the shows?

Interested in your thoughts on this.
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Old 06-20-2002, 01:46 PM   #2
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I don't think no one, but Larry knew what state of mind he was in at that time. However, it is that particular state of mind that will cause you to act and say things a certain way that you might not otherwise at another period in your life.

It could be that Larry was feeling a lot of the pressure of the expectations that were heaped on the band after The Joshua Tree Tour, so much that I believe they ended up making Rattle and Hum below the standards that they would have liked for the film, because of contradicting the exposure they had longed for, keeping the director at arms length and not willing to let their lives become an open book to the public, and now where feeling a backlash of criticism for the way they were ripping off American music, and were even receiving criticism from fans for there fascination with America.

With all this said, who is to know if it was not Bono's or another of the band's members intention to mix up the set on the Lovetown Tour, and thus try and bring Larry's affections back around to the grueling task of being U2 with the making of albums, the tours, the marketing, the merchandising, and all the makes up being in the greatest band ever, and more importantly, look with pride on the catolog of music that they had created those last ten years together.

And maybe it was Bono's intention in making the speech about 'having to go away for awhile and dream it all up again' as a way to let Larry know that you started this band, and if it is to end, then you can call the shots, you can say it is over, and the dream will die with you, as the dream begin with you...and maybe, just maybe, they could, with no pressure placed on them, come back together like they did in 1990-1991, and find that spark again, find that passion again, and more importantly, find themselves again, and in a sense, begin to call the shots, do it there way, and if ZooTV wouldn't have come off, and least they knew they would have ended it all with the band being true to themselves. Fortunately, ZooTV worked, and the spark returned, and for whatever reason, Larry found again what he was looking for within the band, and carried on through a grueling tour which lasted almost 2 years.

Sorry for going on and on, and I hope what I said made some sort of sense.

Chris
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Old 06-20-2002, 02:03 PM   #3
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Well, I think Larry was just fed up with all the concerts at that time and that it was sort of too much all at once. Everybody has those times occasionly so why not Larry? If he would have held on to that thinking then today U2 would surely not exist in the way we all love it.
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Old 06-20-2002, 02:37 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally posted by FallingStar
Well, I think Larry was just fed up with all the concerts at that time and that it was sort of too much all at once.
i totally agree. although i was a fan of the band, i was waaaaaaay too young to go to concerts at this point. but from what i've seen, it seemed by the time they got to the lovetown tour that it was a tired, boring act. maybe not for the fans who probably still had a blast, but to the band. by this point, they were touring up to three years after joshua tree had been released, and had only come up with a so-so album in the process.

i don't know, i've never seen or heard any concerts from this tour, but it just seemed to me like they were just continuing on, and not necessarily happy about it. from pictures i've seen, the looks on their faces seemed to say "oh god, not again" or something to that extent. i could be totally wrong, but like others have said, who knows what exactly larry meant or was thinking when he said that.
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Old 06-20-2002, 03:52 PM   #5
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Chris I loved what you had to say.

Quite true we'll never really know! But it intruiged me how that tour out of all of them gave him the heebie jeebies the most.

Chris I love the idea that the reason there WAS so much variation was to keep them all from going insane! That the more successful shows bring variety by themselves, but that the LTTour was getting so stale that they had to do something or else... just put another quarter in, like Larry indicated.

And I loved the thought that what Bono said about dreaming it all up again was For Larry, telling him we honor your feelings- it's all for one in this game- and you did start the band, so if we have to, we'll erase Everything and start from scratch!! Imagine how scary those first few months of recording AB must have been, then, for Larry.. coming off the last tour feeling like he did, and then all of them just bumping heads in Hansa.. scary! But like you said.. they did it.

wow..thanks Chris. So I guess we should be thankful they don't have to "resort" to mixing up the setlist to keep it interesting for them.


Quote:
Originally posted by spanisheyes

With all this said, who is to know if it was not Bono's or another of the band's members intention to mix up the set on the Lovetown Tour, and thus try and bring Larry's affections back around to the grueling task of being U2 with the making of albums, the tours, the marketing, the merchandising, and all the makes up being in the greatest band ever, and more importantly, look with pride on the catolog of music that they had created those last ten years together.

And maybe it was Bono's intention in making the speech about 'having to go away for awhile and dream it all up again' as a way to let Larry know that you started this band, and if it is to end, then you can call the shots, you can say it is over, and the dream will die with you, as the dream begin with you...and maybe, just maybe, they could, with no pressure placed on them, come back together like they did in 1990-1991, and find that spark again, find that passion again, and more importantly, find themselves again, and in a sense, begin to call the shots, do it there way, and if ZooTV wouldn't have come off, and least they knew they would have ended it all with the band being true to themselves. Fortunately, ZooTV worked, and the spark returned, and for whatever reason, Larry found again what he was looking for within the band, and carried on through a grueling tour which lasted almost 2 years.

Sorry for going on and on, and I hope what I said made some sort of sense.

Chris
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Old 06-20-2002, 04:38 PM   #6
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Rather than be a bad time in U2s concert career, from the Lovetown shows I have, it may be U2 at their best live and certainly their most diverse. I'd love to get a bootleg of every show from this tour!
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Old 06-20-2002, 05:05 PM   #7
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It makes you wonder if U2 were playing at their best, and were diversifying their setlist, because within the band, they may have had the feeling that The Lovetown Tour just might be their last tour.

Chris
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Old 06-20-2002, 05:07 PM   #8
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Hello,

I read this Larry quote too (in Flanagan's At The End Of The World). IIRC, he made the jukebox comment because he he had the feeling that it didn't matter anymore what they played and in what order.
In many interviews over the years each band member said that they also wanted to 'tell' some story, take people on a trip with their concerts. So the concerts had some beginning, a 'static' middle and a clear end. During the Lovetown tour this kind of structure was missing and I think Larry had the feeling that fans didn't even notice it, that the concert was just some jukebox where each song could be played anytime regardless if it fitted in the context or not.

That's my opinion about it.

C ya!

Marty
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Old 06-20-2002, 05:49 PM   #9
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IMO I think the tour schedule had a lot to do with that comment from Larry.

The night after night after night in the same place. I saw them in Brisbane October 2, 3, and 4th. By the third night you could see the wear on all of them and hear it in Bono's voice a little. Then they left Brisbane and played Melbourne from Oct 7th through Oct 16th with only a couple of nights open in that time!

It was an extreme schedule to accomodate all the ticket buyers. They could have sold out a stadium instead of 11 nights in the same city.
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Old 06-20-2002, 05:53 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally posted by STING2
Rather than be a bad time in U2s concert career, from the Lovetown shows I have, it may be U2 at their best live and certainly their most diverse. I'd love to get a bootleg of every show from this tour!
I agree with this statement completely. The Lovetown tour is probebly my favorite tour to collect. The running orders to alot of those shows were the most diverse U2 have been. However, they played more different songs on the Joshua Tree and Elevation tours (those tours were also much longer though)

I read an interview with Bono at the time and they asked about how they were mixing it up more. He indicated that they were getting bored with the same setlists (obviously not now ) and they wanted to mix it up (perhaps Larry's view was the catalyst for this). He indicated that one show they practically reversed the song order just because they were so bored (this show was 12-1-89 Osaka Japan). Alot of the interviews I read at the time seemed to indicate U2 were not having a very good time on Lovetown. Bono was having vocal problems quite often also, resulting in cancelled (later re-scheduled) shows twice on the tour. I think their musicianship shined through more as a result as they were only focused on it, not the usual tour distractions. Thats my opinion anyway.
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Old 06-20-2002, 06:25 PM   #11
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*just my two cents*

When it comes to 'technical' tours like ZooTV and PopMart.. it would be a technical disaster to vary the set too much from night to night because too many factors are involved in the show- lighting, video cameras, video projectors, special effects, etc...
and all those factors rely on a LOT of different people to pull it off night after night...

*Now I will go ponder how it would be possible to technically top ZooTV...*
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Old 06-20-2002, 11:39 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally posted by Blue Room



I read an interview with Bono at the time and they asked about how they were mixing it up more. He indicated that they were getting bored with the same setlists (obviously not now ) and they wanted to mix it up (perhaps Larry's view was the catalyst for this). He indicated that one show they practically reversed the song order just because they were so bored (this show was 12-1-89 Osaka Japan). Alot of the interviews I read at the time seemed to indicate U2 were not having a very good time on Lovetown. Bono was having vocal problems quite often also, resulting in cancelled (later re-scheduled) shows twice on the tour. I think their musicianship shined through more as a result as they were only focused on it, not the usual tour distractions. Thats my opinion anyway.

Thank you- this was very interesting! I'd love to read some of those quotes if you ever come across them!
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Old 06-21-2002, 12:02 AM   #13
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Joshua Tree and Elevation had more different songs? I'm going to have to go look this up. Probably the best way to compare is to list all the songs played on each tour, list the number of times each song was played on those tours. I just have the feeling that on average, a person seeing Lovetown 4 times would here more different songs, than a person seeing Joshua or Elevation 4 times.
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Old 06-21-2002, 12:12 AM   #14
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Wow....what started as a passing conversation, Carrie, has turned into a really fascinating topic. Great ideas everyone - and thanks, Chris, for jumping on this so fast and so thoughtfully. Blue Room, I've also read the statement about playing the setlist backwards, also, and hadn't linked it with the variety of songs played on this tour. I do remember perhaps some Bono quotes about the boredom of playing so many nights in the same venues because of ticket demand, and I think that made them more sluggish and frustrated as well.

Great, great topic, Carrie, and awesome insights from everyone.
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Old 06-21-2002, 01:46 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally posted by Popmartijn
.
In many interviews over the years each band member said that they also wanted to 'tell' some story, take people on a trip with their concerts. So the concerts had some beginning, a 'static' middle and a clear end. During the Lovetown tour this kind of structure was missing and I think Larry had the feeling that fans didn't even notice it
this makes the most sense to me
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Old 06-21-2002, 05:43 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally posted by STING2
Joshua Tree and Elevation had more different songs? I'm going to have to go look this up. Probably the best way to compare is to list all the songs played on each tour, list the number of times each song was played on those tours. I just have the feeling that on average, a person seeing Lovetown 4 times would here more different songs, than a person seeing Joshua or Elevation 4 times.
Why do I always lose these lists!

A while ago I'd made a list with every song played on the Joshua Tree, Lovetown and Elevation tour. I did it exactly for these reasons, to compare how varied each tour was. Hell, I even posted the results here on Interference (in the now defunct tour forum). Anyway, here's what I can remember of those lists (although they may not be totally correct)

Joshua Tree:
109 shows
45 different songs (not exactly, but close)

Lovetown:
47 shows
35 different songs

Elevation:
113 shows
50 different songs

So during Lovetown tour they clearly didn't play as much songs as during the other tours, but then again, the tour was only half as long as the others. The Lovetown tour also had a standard setlist length of about 18-20 songs, whereas the other tours had a standard setlist length of 20-22 songs.

Marty
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Old 06-21-2002, 05:46 AM   #17
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Lookin at Larry back then, he seem a bit detached from it all, but always has done with U2, and maybe after so long reached a point of almost runnin away, but refrained from doin so,,,,,,, I have no idea..........we all go through that moment.............but its what we're involved in that makes our decision as to whether we are commited, or no longer wanting to stay............

(*shrugs*
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Old 06-21-2002, 06:57 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally posted by Popmartijn


Why do I always lose these lists!

A while ago I'd made a list with every song played on the Joshua Tree, Lovetown and Elevation tour. I did it exactly for these reasons, to compare how varied each tour was. Hell, I even posted the results here on Interference (in the now defunct tour forum). Anyway, here's what I can remember of those lists (although they may not be totally correct)

Joshua Tree:
109 shows
45 different songs (not exactly, but close)

Lovetown:
47 shows
35 different songs

Elevation:
113 shows
50 different songs

So during Lovetown tour they clearly didn't play as much songs as during the other tours, but then again, the tour was only half as long as the others. The Lovetown tour also had a standard setlist length of about 18-20 songs, whereas the other tours had a standard setlist length of 20-22 songs.

Marty
It only makes sense that the Elevation Tour would have more songs. After all, that tour was able to draw from AB, "Zooropa," "Pop," and ATYCLB. That's 4 big albums that the Love Town or JT tours simply didn't have.

Why did the JT tour had more songs than the Love Town tour? My guess is that when U2 approached the JT tour, not only did they want to play songs from JT, but from their earlier works as well. In other words, they really wanted to showcase all that they had done up to that point. In contrast, by the Love Town tour, JT had become SUCH a huge hit that U2 may have felt that they had to focus a bit more on the JT era songs, which might have limited the variety.

I found this thread interesting. For example, one person commented that Bono had vocal problems. Yet, of all tours, he sounds the most powerful on the Love Town tour. It's during this tour where you might think he really was an opera singer performing rock music. Also, while Bono has had vocal problems on other tours (PopMart being the most obvious), he never cancelled shows.

Additionally, while Larry may have stated that comment about U2 being a "jukebox", as others have written, clearly the whole band felt this way. Despite mixing up the set-lists, playing with B.B. King and trying to alter as much as possible, all of U2 seemed annoyed. Then, a few years later, along comes ZOO TV with its very repetitive set-lists. But now, instead of U2 feeling like they were a jukebox, Adam made comments about how the ZOO TV tour really saved him. In other words, it inspired him instead of annoying him.

Just further proof, in my eyes, that if U2 didn't transition to AB and the ZOO TV theme, but instead, made a JT2, they might not be around today.
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Old 06-21-2002, 07:59 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally posted by doctorwho


I found this thread interesting. For example, one person commented that Bono had vocal problems. Yet, of all tours, he sounds the most powerful on the Love Town tour. It's during this tour where you might think he really was an opera singer performing rock music. Also, while Bono has had vocal problems on other tours (PopMart being the most obvious), he never cancelled shows.

Additionally, while Larry may have stated that comment about U2 being a "jukebox", as others have written, clearly the whole band felt this way. Despite mixing up the set-lists, playing with B.B. King and trying to alter as much as possible, all of U2 seemed annoyed. Then, a few years later, along comes ZOO TV with its very repetitive set-lists. But now, instead of U2 feeling like they were a jukebox, Adam made comments about how the ZOO TV tour really saved him. In other words, it inspired him instead of annoying him.

Just further proof, in my eyes, that if U2 didn't transition to AB and the ZOO TV theme, but instead, made a JT2, they might not be around today.
Great post. Totally agree they had more to pull from from Ele so it makes sense they played more songs. If you look at the setlists during LoveTown it changed almost Every night- which is not the band we know! (can we all recite the ele setlist now or what )

Nice pick up on what Adam said about Zoo saving him. It truly saved the band musically. Thanks to everyone for their insights- this has been really interesting to me. And of course thanks to Jennifer for initially pondering this with me

btw, B's voice during Love Town And also when he had bad vocal nights during Pop, those are the shows where he cranked up the Emotion level to about 20.
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Old 06-21-2002, 04:34 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally posted by doctorwho



I found this thread interesting. For example, one person commented that Bono had vocal problems. Yet, of all tours, he sounds the most powerful on the Love Town tour. It's during this tour where you might think he really was an opera singer performing rock music. Also, while Bono has had vocal problems on other tours (PopMart being the most obvious), he never cancelled shows.


Just further proof, in my eyes, that if U2 didn't transition to AB and the ZOO TV theme, but instead, made a JT2, they might not be around today.
For the first part. I would agree, Bono was pushing his vocals to the limit making for some great shows musically as I stated before. The reason shows were cancelled was because he was pushing it to the limit. He couldn't even speak after the 2nd show in Sydney in October 1989. So while he had vocal problems on other tours, he also never lost his voice completely on them which would ALWAYS require a cancellation. He apparantly saw a vocal chord specialist after the Dublin Lovetown shows and the doctor listened to the tapes of the shows (supposedly this is how the Dublin Lovetown soundboards leaked) and told him he was hitting notes that Pavarotti and opera singers would hit once in an entire concert and he was hitting them 4 or 5 times in one song. It is evident after Lovetown that Bono changed the way he sings live.

For the second part, further evidence? I dont know why you needed more. It is thoroughly documented by the band in many interviews, video, etc that they did not want to make a JT part 2 and that the band may not have made it if they didnt. So that certainly is no revelation.
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