Every month we put a U2 fan in the spotlight. The fan of the month for October 2018 is user LSMelo. Read along for the interview we had with this U2 fan.
"This is the result of winning the battle against the cancer. We all must enjoy all the little things and moments of this live and put aside what is not important or relevant."
Tell us more about yourself, who are you and what do you do for a living?
I'm 50, I was born in Coimbra but since I was a little boy I live in Ponta Delgada - Azores (a Portuguese little group of islands in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean). I have a degree in economics, so I work around this area, mostly accounting and human resources.
How did you become a U2 fan? Tell us how it happened.
When I was a teenager (in the '80s) it was very hard to get new music around here. There was no Internet, we had only one radio station in Azores, the new vinyl albums didn't arrive fast to these islands, so I had to do something about it. In that time, we had a music newspaper I used to buy and there was a list of contacts to trade some tapes (the old cassettes). Within these trades once I received an album from a group with a funny name. A letter and a number. I think you guessed already: U2. The album was "War". The first time I listened said: this is not good, is simply magnificent!!!! Seconds, New Year's Day, Two Hearts Beat As One, Like A Song, Surrender and of course Sunday Bloody Sunday. A few months later I bought the album Under A Blood Red Sky and somehow manage to get a version of the full show of Red Rocks and since then they are my favorite band.
What is your favorite U2 tour and why?
I loved PopMart Tour. I loved the album, even if it seems that the band don't like it enough to play it live. It is not my favorite album but is a great one. Regarding the tour I think it was very strong, the "regular" setlist was very good (to me, of course) and all the scenario, technology was wonderful. I just loved when the band got of a giant lemon space ship!!!! In a few words, I loved the show and the show inside the show, if you know what i mean.
By the way, even with Bono's struggles with the voice that day, THE CONCERT of U2 for me is Sarajevo. For all the courage to go there in that time, the happiness they gave to that people, for giving them a special day after the civil war.
You just have won your personal battle with cancer (congrats!), what did the show in Lisbon mean to you? How did you live it?
It was very emotional to me. The beginning of the show (3-5 songs) I was really enjoying it but at the same time I watched with all my heart my life in the past year. The suffering of my wife and kids, my own one, all the little steps I made in order to win this battle, the two surgeries, the treatments, ... Specially was very happy to be there enjoying my favorite band playing alive, myself being alive and taking care of myself. Now I have a colostomy, but I don't care. Already learned how to live with it without any fear.
I managed to get a ticket for the second show. A funny story. My flight from Ponta Delgada to Lisbon was delayed and I checked again the BlueTicket webpage to see if I could get a ticket cheaper than the first ones the band put in sale prior the shows. I got the only one cheaper!!! Said to myself: considering what you passed this year give yourself a gift!!! So I went to the second show. Usually I stay in Adam side, the second show had a different perspective: got the seat in Edge side.
Regarding the setlist, I went to the shows with this spirit: "what they want to sing is what we will get, so let's have fun with it". And I loved it!!!
This is the result of winning the battle against the cancer. We all must enjoy all the little things and moments of this live and put aside what is not important or relevant. Live is too uncertain. When I bought the ticket in January I didn't know how I would be in September, but I managed to go to the show!!!
What is your favorite member of the band, and what would you say to him, if you have the chance?
Adam Clayton!!! I would thank him a lot because in my opinion (based in what I read) he was the man who manage to make the band stick all together in a strange period in the beginning, when they didn't know if they continue as a band. And because he fought a lot against an addiction, kept a strong mind and now he makes his living trying to help other people with addiction problems. That's what I would try to speak with him.
What do you think of Songs of Experience? How does it compare to other U2 albums?
This one I think is a very strong album, very consistent and seems to me that the fans and also the social media didn't accept it very well, like what happened with SoI. Is an album that is in the same high level of the other great albums from U2.
In your opinion, what do you see the band doing after this tour?
I'm afraid that SoE could be the "goodbye" album, and really hope is not. I believe they would make another tour in 2-3 years from now but honestly after that I really don't know. They are almost 60 years, they may think they deserve to rest and don't care with new songs, but that's something they need to decide. While they enjoy being together (I believe they enjoy it because they maintain the original four guys in the band) to create together and playing around this world together, I really hope we will see them around in tours and new music. But if this is the end, what I could say is to enjoy their lives, be with the ones they love, live is to short and to uncertain.
What U2 song means the most to you and why?
“Bad”. We all have some addictions, troubles, worries in our lives. They can be harmful to us or not, but we have them even in a little way. This song represents to me the way to go over them, winning them, and to walk on with our lives with no regrets.
How different is U2 compared to other artists that you like?
The attitude in live performances, for me they seem to be always pleased to play and it seems they're giving their hearts and souls just to please us.
What are your hobbies and interests away from U2, musical or otherwise?
I like a lot reading, mostly novels. Can’t say I have a favorite writer, so I read about anything. Just need to enjoy it and learn with the experiences we read about.
I also like photography but with this age I can’t take excellent photos. So I can announce that I already accepted being an average photographer and I’m happy with it!
Thanks for this interview LSMelo!
LSMelo (left) and Remy (right)
Note: Our crew members choose the fan of the month, you can't sign up for it.
"Sometimes Bono would come offstage in the break and would not have left character. The darkness would still be there with him. Sometimes it was hard for him to shake it off and get into playing the next songs. That darkness has a certain kind of adrenaline."
- The Edge on U2 performing 'Exit' in 1987
did you know
The lyric "3:33 when the numbers fell off the clock face" from Unknown Caller is a reference to the Bible verse Jeremiah 33:3. Bono refers to it as "God's phone number".