U2 dedicates song to Anthony Bourdain at Apollo show

U2 frontman Bono honoured the late Anthony Bourdain toward the end of the band’s special performance at the Apollo Theater in Harlem.

Bono spoke of losing a “lot of inspiring, useful people” over the past few years “who gave up on their own life” alluding to the apparent suicides of musicians Chris Cornell and Chester Bennington, as well as fashion designer Kate Spade.

Fashion designer Kate Spade and chef Anthony Bourdain died last week. (Bebeto Matthews, Andy Kropa/Invision/Associated Press)

“And now this great storyteller, who I’m sure has stories he couldn’t tell us. So for Anthony Bourdain, and his friends and family this is a song inspired by a great, great, great friend of ours. His name is Michael Hutchence,” Bono said Monday night before launching into an impassioned version of Stuck in a Moment You Can’t Get Out Of.

The Grammy-winning song about suicide was written by the band after INXS singer Hutchence was found dead in 1997 of an apparent suicide.

The 61-year old Bourdain was found dead of an apparent suicide last week in France.

Setlist pulls from different eras

As for the performance, the band took a break from their Experience and Innocence arena tour to play a special one-night show at the legendary theatre for Sirius XM, subscribers. The invite-only show had a star-studded guest list, including Harry Belafonte, tennis legend John McEnroe, rocker Jon Bon Jovi, E-Street band guitarist “Little Steven” Van Zandt, and New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft.

U2 members Larry Mullen Jr, from left, The Edge, Bono and Adam Clayton performed songs from their new release Experience, as well as old favourites and tracks the band has never before played on tour. (Evan Agostini/Invision/Associated Press)

The band ripped through its 90-minute set, covering 18 songs, and maintaining enough energy to keep many of the nearly 1,500 on their feet for most of the night. On the floor, fans waved their arms and sang along from the first chorus of opener, I Will Follow to the last encore of Love Is Bigger Than Anything in Its Way.

Never afraid to play songs from a new album, four came from Experience. But they also included standards like Pride (In the Name of Love)Vertigo, and Desire.

They also dusted off a few gems that have not been heard yet on the tour, including Angel of Harlem, the band’s homage to Billie Holliday. For that one, and a few others, the Sun Ra Arkestra backed them up.

Other songs marking their first tour appearance included, When Love Comes to DownEvery Breaking Wave and Out of Control from Boy, the band’s 1980 debut album.

Though the concert was only for a select crowd of primarily SiriusXM subscribers, U2 fans can hear it on the band’s SiriusXM channel on Wednesday.


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