Thursday, May 28, 2015

VIDEO: U2 pay tribute to late tour manager in Los Angeles

U2 paid tribute to their late tour manager, Dennis Sheehan, during Wednesday’s show in Los Angeles.

Sheehan died of a heart attack Tuesday night in West Hollywood at the age of 68.

On the second of five nights at The Forum, the group dedicated two tracks to Sheehan, starting early in the show with “Iris (Hold Me Close)” from 2014’s “Songs Of Innocence.”

"What a privilege to share the stage with these brothers of mine and to share this evening with you who have given us everything,” began Bono. “U2 is kind of family. It's a brotherhood, although there's a lot of sisters too. But our extended family is very, very important to us. We look after each other and it takes a lot to put on a show like tonight.

“Last night we lost a member of our family. Dennis Sheehan was his name. He was U2's tour manager for 33 years. He loved, as we all do, the city of Los Angeles and he called the Sunset Marquis his ‘home away from home’. He came to this city as a young man in the ‘70s, working for Led Zeppelin. He always thought maybe U2 could be the next Led Zeppelin, which of course is impossible.

“We did try once at his last big birthday,”
he continued. “We turned up at his birthday dressed as Led Zeppelin. I must say The Edge looked pretty good with that two-necked guitar. Adam was quite something because he had kind of professorial John Paul Jones look. The biggest problem was I couldn't quite fill Robert Plant’s pants. Who could?

“Anyway, a lot of U2 songs over the years have been written to fill a void, an absence, a hole in a heart left by a loved one. This next one is one of those. It’s for my mother, Iris, who taught me through the womb that this kind of thing can be…an opening to something fantastic.”

U2 closed the show with a second Sheehan tribute and dedication.

“We made a live album way back when; it was set in Colorado at Red Rocks,” Bono said. “It was called ‘Under a Blood Red Sky.’ We used to end the show with ‘40.’ And whatever happened that night, nobody was singing the refrain.

“So we were backstage just trying to figure out what the hell was going on and trying to make it happen. We just heard this lone voice, this single voice, singing ‘How long to sing this song’ -- a light voice, beautiful tremolo. And it was the voice of Dennis Sheehan, trying to get everyone to sing, which they did.

“So we dedicate this song... in fact we dedicate the night... in fact we dedicate our whole tour to the very vivid memory of Dennis Sheehan, St. Dennis of Dublin, as he's known around here."

U2 then closed the evening with a performance of “40.”

U2 recently launched their “Innocence + Experience” tour in Vancouver, with guitarist The Edge making headlines of his own when he fell off stage during the show.

The current North America leg wraps up in late July with an 8-show run at New York’s Madison Square Garden.

See also:

U2 tour manager dies in Los Angeles
VIDEO: Fan performs request with U2 in Phoenix
U2 discuss The Edge’s fall off stage in Vancouver
VIDEO: U2 guitarist The Edge falls off stage in Vancouver
Search U2 at hennemusic