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Trivia wrap-up, Part I

For the week since the end of the first leg, I have been posting daily trivia to the U2gigs Twitter account. I will continue to post this trivia until the start of the second leg. After each week's worth of trivia (or perhaps at more frequent intervals), I will write a mainpage article expanding on what has been posted, and this is the first edition. Due to its unexpected lengthiness, it will cover the first four days of trivia; in the next 24 hours, I will post the second half covering the next three days.

In any case, interested in when Streets last missed a gig? Which Pop song has been performed live the most? What song has had the longest gap between performances? Then read on ...

23/08 trivia: The most played Pop song is not Discotheque. It is actually Gone. Gone has 146 performances to Discotheque's 114.

A common misconception is that Discotheque is the Pop song U2 have performed live the most. Hardly a surprising misconception: Discotheque was the lead single from Pop, so it's arguably the best known, while Gone was never a single despite being a fan favourite. Furthermore, Discotheque is the only Pop song to have been performed live on three tours (Popmart, Elevation, and Vertigo); Gone was last played on Elevation's second leg, in Glasgow on 27 August 2001.

However, Gone was something of a setlist fixture for Elevation's first two legs while Discotheque faded fast from the scene on that tour and only showed up twice on Vertigo. Hence Gone currently has a secure hold on the title of most-performed Pop song. Second place does not even go to Discotheque; Please comes in with four more performances. Furthermore, Discotheque's hold on third place is actually very shaky; Staring At The Sun trails just a few performances behind, and when you add in snippets, it takes the lead (ironically, all snippets of SATS have been in Discotheque).

(Note: this item of trivia was updated 30/08 to reflect Please's status.)

24/08 trivia: The last U2 show to feature 3 b-sides was 3 August 1987. They were Silver And Gold, Party Girl, and Spanish Eyes.

This show was exceptional even in 1987. The setlist was a fairly significant departure from what the band had previously been playing - Bullet had never opened a show before, and this was Silver And Gold's live debut. It was the only time all three b-sides in U2's JT Tour repertoire appeared at the same show, and it was the first time since 29 May 1981 that U2 played three b-sides in one show. U2 have never played more than three b-sides in a single concert.

25/08 trivia: The last full U2 show to not feature Where The Streets Have No Name? 18 November 1989, Sydney. Gloria was played in the spot where you'd expect Streets.

Streets has not always been the sacred cow that it is today. It missed 12 shows on the second leg of the Joshua Tree Tour. It then went on to miss one Lovetown gig - 18 November 1989. On Lovetown, Streets was normally played in a trio with I Will Follow and I Still Haven't Found. Instead, at this show, Gloria shows up in Streets' place preceding I Will Follow. Streets has gone on to be played at every subsequent Lovetown show, all shows on ZooTV, Popmart, Elevation, and Vertigo, and thus far all shows on 360°.

26/08 trivia: The longest a U2 song has gone between performances is The Ocean: 22 years, 3 months, 22 days, from 15 December 1982 to 6 April 2005.

In all likelihood, this gap is actually slightly shorter: we are missing setlists for the last seven concerts of the War Pre-Tour. The Ocean was U2's standard closer at this time and probably appeared at all these shows. Hence, if its last performance was on 24 December 1982, the actual gap would be 22 years, 3 months, and 13 days.

A number of U2 songs could beat The Ocean's record if U2 choose to resurrect them. The following songs have not been played in 22 years, 3 months, 23 days or more:

Pre-Boy era: All songs.
Boy era: Twilight, Stories For Boys, A Day Without Me, Another Time, Another Place, Shadows And Tall Trees, Boy/Girl, Touch, and Things To Make And Do.
October era: Everything apart from Gloria and October.
War era: Seconds, Like A Song, Surrender, and A Celebration.
The Unforgettable Fire era: Wire and Indian Summer Sky.
How on earth do you classify this: Womanfish

The next song to reach a gap between performances of 22 years, 3 months, and 23 days will be Trip Through Your Wires, on 12 April 2010.

Stay tuned for the continuation of this article very soon!

Posted on by Axver

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