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U2 => Tours => Topic started by: bonorules on June 03, 2015, 11:05:29 AM

Title: Willie Williams Talks to Live Design
Post by: bonorules on June 03, 2015, 11:05:29 AM
Looks like this will be a multi-part interview and below is part 1. Interesting comments from him about the two different set lists idea and that it seemed to be what the band wanted until they started rehearsals.

http://livedesignonline.com/u2-innocence-experience-tour-2015/willie-williams-u2-s-innocence-experience-part-1 (http://livedesignonline.com/u2-innocence-experience-tour-2015/willie-williams-u2-s-innocence-experience-part-1)
Title: Re: Willie Williams Talks to Live Design
Post by: Saint1322 on June 03, 2015, 12:09:19 PM
All they had to do was state their intentions to do this BEFORE the tickets went on sale.
Title: Re: Willie Williams Talks to Live Design
Post by: The Unknown Caller on June 03, 2015, 01:18:40 PM
I mean, it's pretty clear they didn't really know and hadn't fully thought it through until rehearsal time came around.
Title: Re: Willie Williams Talks to Live Design
Post by: Saint1322 on June 03, 2015, 01:27:40 PM
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I mean, it's pretty clear they didn't really know and hadn't fully thought it through until rehearsal time came around.

It is, and that's why I am not upset at them, because I knew that Bono was just talking out his backside and it wouldn't happen. However, I get why the people who did believe the hype and bought multiple tickets expecting different shows are upset.
Title: Re: Willie Williams Talks to Live Design
Post by: lorijane on June 03, 2015, 01:35:09 PM
I haven't been to a show, but from what I've read, it can still be a "different" show from night to night depending on where you are located. For instance, I have GAs for Chicago 1 and 2, and it seems that you can have one kind o show if you are on the rail, and another perspective if you are further back and can see the screen, even if the set lists are similar. Or I'm just justifying going two nights.
Title: Re: Willie Williams Talks to Live Design
Post by: markt on June 03, 2015, 01:41:55 PM
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I mean, it's pretty clear they didn't really know and hadn't fully thought it through until rehearsal time came around.

It is, and that's why I am not upset at them, because I knew that Bono was just talking out his backside and it wouldn't happen. However, I get why the people who did believe the hype and bought multiple tickets expecting different shows are upset.

It doesn't bother me either but also have some sympathy for those attending mutilple shows on the basis of what was said.

However one point I would make is that wasn't just any old interview with Bono and therefore I would not class it as hype.  His comments were part of the official announcement of the tour on U2.com.  If I had wanted to go to multiple shows then I would have also taken his comments about having a completely different feeling from night 1 to night 2 as fact rather than just their intention.
Title: Re: Willie Williams Talks to Live Design
Post by: Saint1322 on June 03, 2015, 01:43:45 PM
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I haven't been to a show, but from what I've read, it can still be a "different" show from night to night depending on where you are located. For instance, I have GAs for Chicago 1 and 2, and it seems that you can have one kind o show if you are on the trail, and another perspective if you are further back and can see the screen, even if the set lists are similar. Or I'm just justifying going two nights.

You mean there's a way to see U2 BESIDES being as close the band as possible? :)

I remember this being talked about during 360; people were saying that of course you want to get a good spot, but why would you want the exact same view every time you see the show? I think you've made an excellent point. If there were ever a show to see from different vantage points, I think this would be it.
Title: Re: Willie Williams Talks to Live Design
Post by: Canadanne on June 03, 2015, 03:44:39 PM
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However one point I would make is that wasn't just any old interview with Bono and therefore I would not class it as hype.  His comments were part of the official announcement of the tour on U2.com.  If I had wanted to go to multiple shows then I would have also taken his comments about having a completely different feeling from night 1 to night 2 as fact rather than just their intention.

That's the trouble, isn't it? I mean, sure, he only said they would "try" and it wasn't an absolute promise - but if there was still so much uncertainty about whether it was doable, why include that remark in the official tour announcement? That's really not a good place for Bono to be idly speculating about what might happen. As others have said, if they ever want to do alternating shows of some sort, they need to fully plan and explain it *before* any tickets go on sale - otherwise, forget about it. This whole thing has been handled very messily.
Title: Re: Willie Williams Talks to Live Design
Post by: SlyDanner on June 03, 2015, 05:17:58 PM
I'm just amazed people are still whining about the supposed 2-night set.  I bought multiple shows and I never, I mean never, seriously thought the band could pull off a completely different show over 2 nights.  If you really thought that would happen, then honestly and with all due respect, you take these guys too much at their word, or just did not think through the implications of this. 

The most interesting bit in the interview, to me, is the notion that the tour would have started this time last year.   Given all that has happened I would love to know what was the single biggest factor in moving it back a year?  I suspect they just weren't happy with the album... we know it wasn't Bono's injury b/c that happened post-SOI release.  I wonder what sort of album we would have gotten had it been released a year earlier... I guess we'll never know.
Title: Re: Willie Williams Talks to Live Design
Post by: Pathop on June 03, 2015, 05:44:39 PM
Fact is, it was stated 2 different shows...I have been to every tour since Zoo TV multiple times and going to do the same for this one, but its wrong that people were unintentionally deceived.  The same way ticket holders were unintentionally deceived about the red zone and obstructed views.  Dont know why these things werent worked out.  It is unfortunate but what I am beginning to realize is that we are all still going to love the show and be excited about the hopefully experience stadium tour.  At least I will.
Title: Re: Willie Williams Talks to Live Design
Post by: Fastcars12 on June 03, 2015, 06:41:01 PM
Let's be honest,  was the possibility of 2 different shows the reason why most people bought tix to multiple shows?  I have a feeling (and I could be completely wrong) that most people (myself included) who are going to multiple shows would still be doing so had U2 never mentioned anything about 2 different shows. 

That said, if you did purchase tickets to multiple shows on the notion of two different shows and are pi**ed off about it, Stub hub is your friend.
Title: Re: Willie Williams Talks to Live Design
Post by: SlyDanner on June 03, 2015, 11:00:55 PM
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Let's be honest,  was the possibility of 2 different shows the reason why most people bought tix to multiple shows?  I have a feeling (and I could be completely wrong) that most people (myself included) who are going to multiple shows would still be doing so had U2 never mentioned anything about 2 different shows. 

That said, if you did purchase tickets to multiple shows on the notion of two different shows and are pi**ed off about it, Stub hub is your friend.

Exactly.
Title: Re: Willie Williams Talks to Live Design
Post by: markreed on June 04, 2015, 03:30:39 AM
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I'm just amazed people are still whining about the supposed 2-night set.  I bought multiple shows and I never, I mean never, seriously thought the band could pull off a completely different show over 2 nights.  If you really thought that would happen, then honestly and with all due respect, you take these guys too much at their word, or just did not think through the implications of this. 

The most interesting bit in the interview, to me, is the notion that the tour would have started this time last year.   Given all that has happened I would love to know what was the single biggest factor in moving it back a year?  I suspect they just weren't happy with the album... we know it wasn't Bono's injury b/c that happened post-SOI release.  I wonder what sort of album we would have gotten had it been released a year earlier... I guess we'll never know.

Amazed? Its a bait-and-switch. Not intentionally, but that's how it worked out. Hell, I don't mind if the two nights aren't *that* different, but I would expect something more different than songs #2,#4,#13-14, and #19 being changed. Changing out 20% of the set doesn't mean a 'completely' different feel... unless they start busting out Slayer covers and encore with 'Reign In Blood'.

I would hope they juggle the sequences around a bit, even if that means set#1 is set#2 but played first, or opening with Hawking speech and COBL occasionally. That would keep it fresh. I laid down for seven shows in the expectation that there would be two different 'feels' on this tour and a decent amount of set rotation : if they hadn't said that, I would've gone for four shows and saved myself over a thousand pounds including all associated costs.
Title: Re: Willie Williams Talks to Live Design
Post by: boom boom on June 04, 2015, 05:55:13 AM
I believe they misled the fans going to multiple shows.  It is not good enough for those who say well, I can't believe you believed Bono this time around.  Yes, normally he talks from his backside and I never take him seriously but the difference this time is that his statement of two different show (and that is why they booked shows in pairs) was part of the OFFICIAL PRESS TOUR ANNOUNCEMENT.  Now a lot of people including myself based their plans on how many shows to see on this statement.  I went to Vancouver for the opening 2 shows based on this and would never have gone knowing now that all that was going to be different were 6 songs from night 1 to night 2 and that they actually said only a week before to the NY times that they changed their minds on the 2 different show concept.  This was totally misleading and very disappointing.   They should have never made this statement if it was not their intention. 
Title: Re: Willie Williams Talks to Live Design
Post by: p8ru2 on June 04, 2015, 07:18:30 AM
Interesting interview. I agree w/ Slydanner & Fastcars here. 

First, Bono says a lot of things, the band normally doesn't change up their set lists from show to show, they are known for this, and that is the general basis to go by when buying tickets. The reasons have been stated in other threads - due in part to theme, musicianship & production elements (video, staging, choreography etc) that can limit spontaneity & changes.

With this tour, the changes with the set lists ARE a departure and they seem to be making it work, staying true to and sticking with their theme which is the anchor, as well as changing more and more songs for fans, mostly in the 2nd set.  They are hitting their stride particularly after the Roxy, and appear more relaxed & fluid to switch things up more spontaneously, even leaving the printed/intended setlist.  Last night they played 9 SOI songs + Ordinary Love, including debut of Volcano & return of The Troubles.  It was a great energetic show - crowd & band was into it.

Is it enough? I think it is & whether you see it from different vantage points or not.  I don't think some will be happy no matter what they play - there's always complaints about songs & the warhorses. U2 can't win and they do try to raise their game & satisfy fans. Moreover,  changes can't happen unless they scrapped the theme & production altogether for a stripped down arena show along the lines of what they did at the Roxy. That'd go against SOI's theme & their intention to underline & highlight that & change their whole production. Not going to happen. 

Separate to this & related (discussed on other threads) I think it more problematic that the maps and tickets sold had the stage flipped & erroneously represented, including the RZ areas, in addition to the lack of foresight & planning with the "division" screen/staging & blocked views. Those are major misrepresentations that fans could not reasonably anticipate & should not have been made on the fly given ticket prices.  They have tried to remedy this a bit with small screens at the ends, raising the 'division' more, stage choreography, and post-haste revised maps at some venues.
Title: Re: Willie Williams Talks to Live Design
Post by: trevgreg on June 04, 2015, 08:27:25 AM
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Is it enough? I think it is & whether you see it from different vantage points or not.  I don't think some will be happy no matter what they play - there's always complaints about songs & the warhorses. U2 can't win and they do try to raise their game & satisfy fans.

One matter that sort of gets overlooked in these discussions too: even if you had two completely different set lists, there's still going to be songs that you want to see more than others and some songs that you enjoy live more than others. Say someone is in the minority and actually going to more than one show in a row. It's not like you're going to suddenly enjoy every single song they do or not be less than thrilled when they leave out songs you want to see out of those shows. For those going to one show, the problem is the same thing they alluded to in that article... you'll feel like you missed out on something.

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Moreover,  changes can't happen unless they scrapped the theme & production altogether for a stripped down arena show along the lines of what they did at the Roxy. That'd go against SOI's theme & their intention to underline & highlight that & change their whole production. Not going to happen. 

And yet people are still going to say that they should scrap video production altogether for the sake of playing "whatever they wanted" to play. I even see this mentioned on other message boards for other artists, assuming that it somehow guarantees off-the-cuff performances or rarities. Maybe in some ways, but I don't think it guarantees completely different songs ever night either. Like it or not, they've had video production in their shows for a long time now and it's probably here to stay.
Title: Re: Willie Williams Talks to Live Design
Post by: p8ru2 on June 04, 2015, 09:01:32 AM
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Is it enough? I think it is & whether you see it from different vantage points or not.  I don't think some will be happy no matter what they play - there's always complaints about songs & the warhorses. U2 can't win and they do try to raise their game & satisfy fans.

One matter that sort of gets overlooked in these discussions too: even if you had two completely different set lists, there's still going to be songs that you want to see more than others and some songs that you enjoy live more than others. Say someone is  in the minority and actually going to more than one show in a row. It's not like you're going to suddenly enjoy every single song they do or not be less than thrilled when they leave songs you want to see out of those shows. For those going to one show, the problem is the same thing they alluded to in that article... you'll feel like you missed out on something.

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Moreover,  changes can't happen unless they scrapped the theme & production altogether for a stripped down arena show along the lines of what they did at the Roxy. That'd go against SOI's theme & their intention to underline & highlight that & change their whole production. Not going to happen. 

And yet people are still going to say that they should scrap video production altogether for the sake of playing "whatever they wanted" to play. I even see this mentioned on other message boards for other artists, assuming that it somehow guarantees off-the-cuff performances or rarities. Maybe in some ways, but I don't think it guarantees completely different songs ever night either. Like it or not, they've had video production in their shows for a long time now and it's probably here to stay.

Agree completely. Do I ponder & wish certain songs were replaced by others or more rotations? Sure I do (and 2 particularly) but at the same time I'm confident in letting the band decide & happy with the balance they've struck for their shows. Not everyone goes to multiple shows & there are many that really enjoyed songs & not others, whether diehard or casual fans. Hard to please everyone.  My "two" to exclude are BTBS & WOWY but they're very popular, so be it. Small concession. 

One thing I'll add re: the article & "FOMO" - I think that the band's worry about that stems a lot from fan feedback. I think they do care & listen which seems to be the case (in the article) but may have been too much (i.e.) anticipating people buying one show or another would "miss out" & be disappointed. 

Seeing them live is an experience that far surpasses online in feeds & videos. It's completely different. Same as the feeling & perceptions of the energy of the audience.  Perhaps one can be more 'objective' in following & scrutinizing performance & set lists from a distance but comparisons between in-person & via streams aren't equal. There's a reason that many have gone to multiple shows in past (& currently) which is not just fanatical.  They're amazing live & most songs really do come alive, even transform, when played live.

Re: Stripped down show vs. Production - Strong arguments for both & I think Roxy showed the merits. Obviously with arenas they could do either but they chose to do the latter to push the boundaries of concert going, including their new sound system (which is awesome).  If they could do the odd 'Roxy-small club' show during their tour (particularly with fan club) that would be a phenomenal compliment to the tour.  Probably not going to happen though, at least not on any regular basis.     
Title: Re: Willie Williams Talks to Live Design
Post by: Saint1322 on June 04, 2015, 09:03:24 AM
I hope that the takeaway from this is, we love Bono, but he gets ahead of himself.

This is the same guy who ... well, where to start? Let's stick with recent history. If you want to trust Bono's visions for the future about show structure and setlists after the whole Songs of Ascent debacle, you go right ahead. :)
Title: Re: Willie Williams Talks to Live Design
Post by: p8ru2 on June 04, 2015, 09:08:07 AM
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I hope that the takeaway from this is, we love Bono, but he gets ahead of himself.

This is the same guy who ... well, where to start? Let's stick with recent history. If you want to trust Bono's visions for the future about show structure and setlists after the whole Songs of Ascent debacle, you go right ahead. :)

He's a dreamer & dreams big. He gets ahead of himself sometimes & jokes about megalomania. The direct benefit is we are often surprised in what he and the band (as well as their team) come up with & throughout their careers.  All to their credit.
Title: Re: Willie Williams Talks to Live Design
Post by: trevgreg on June 04, 2015, 10:04:48 AM
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Re: Stripped down show vs. Production - Strong arguments for both & I think Roxy showed the merits. Obviously with arenas they could do either but they chose to do the latter to push the boundaries of concert going, including their new sound system (which is awesome).  If they could do the odd 'Roxy-small club' show during their tour (particularly with fan club) that would be a phenomenal compliment to the tour.  Probably not going to happen though, at least not on any regular basis.   

I'd love to see more 'smaller' gigs myself, for reasons stated, but I do wonder about the feasibility of it with the band's fan base size and all, obviously. The fan club thing would certainly be a good option, as it would cut off the sky-high scalper prices at the knees. But I can already see the comments about why it's only restricted to the fan club or why they haven't offered anything that good in the past! That or how we're all at the mercy of radio station calls, which I suppose is better than nothing...
Title: Re: Willie Williams Talks to Live Design
Post by: markreed on June 04, 2015, 10:19:46 AM
Here's a thought for the idea of smaller gigs : Fan Club only shows, by lottery, 1 ticket per Fan Club member, held in smaller venues (2,000 or so capacity), played for free, as part of album launch promo tours. Instead of having u2 spend all day to play 3 song to 250 people chosen at random by a TV company, get them to play a small, 10-15 song set to 2,000 people and then gift the set free to a TV company or radio station with say, 1,000 tickets for the TV station and 2,000 for the fanclub. That'll give fans the 'small show', prevent the aggravation of U2 playing 10 miles from your house that you don't stand a chance of getting to, and be better than the for-TV neutered experience. For example, they played somewhere on last years promo tour that is actually walking distance from my house!
Title: Re: Willie Williams Talks to Live Design
Post by: Saint1322 on June 04, 2015, 11:44:24 AM
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Here's a thought for the idea of smaller gigs : Fan Club only shows, by lottery, 1 ticket per Fan Club member, held in smaller venues (2,000 or so capacity), played for free, as part of album launch promo tours. Instead of having u2 spend all day to play 3 song to 250 people chosen at random by a TV company, get them to play a small, 10-15 song set to 2,000 people and then gift the set free to a TV company or radio station with say, 1,000 tickets for the TV station and 2,000 for the fanclub. That'll give fans the 'small show', prevent the aggravation of U2 playing 10 miles from your house that you don't stand a chance of getting to, and be better than the for-TV neutered experience. For example, they played somewhere on last years promo tour that is actually walking distance from my house!

Does anyone have any idea how many people are in the U2 fan club? I would love to know.
Title: Re: Willie Williams Talks to Live Design
Post by: u2beez on June 04, 2015, 03:51:54 PM
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All they had to do was state their intentions to do this BEFORE the tickets went on sale.

Bruce Springsteen toured solo in 2005-06 which was clearly marked and marketed and people still went thinking they were seeing the E Street band.  Outside of our bubbles, people have no common sense about anything. 
Title: Re: Willie Williams Talks to Live Design
Post by: codeguy on June 04, 2015, 04:00:33 PM
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All they had to do was state their intentions to do this BEFORE the tickets went on sale.
Yeah but they didn't know.....
Title: Re: Willie Williams Talks to Live Design
Post by: markreed on June 04, 2015, 04:44:45 PM
Nothing wrong with changing the set up a little : you can still have the staging, just say, move the back half of Set 1 / start of Set 2 to be the end of Set 2 / encore start, for example... keeps it fresh
Title: Re: Willie Williams Talks to Live Design
Post by: SlyDanner on June 04, 2015, 05:18:11 PM
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All they had to do was state their intentions to do this BEFORE the tickets went on sale.

Bruce Springsteen toured solo in 2005-06 which was clearly marked and marketed and people still went thinking they were seeing the E Street band.  Outside of our bubbles, people have no common sense about anything.

I would argue that this applies inside our bubbles too  :o

and I put myself in the category of sometimes abandoning common sense, to be honest  8)
Title: Re: Willie Williams Talks to Live Design
Post by: Giga Razor on June 04, 2015, 06:03:14 PM
Well in fairness most gigs have been different every night so far, by U2 standards it has been radically different with them throwing in a couple of different songs each night,most big band's keep the same set list every night ask DM,ACDC ,Noel Gallagher, the consant reference to Bruce on here is nonsense he has about 20 players with him onstage and some of the obscure songs can bore the pants off the whole crowd apart from the hardcore i've seen him 4 times and have come away both disappointed and baffled.
Title: Re: Willie Williams Talks to Live Design
Post by: p8ru2 on June 04, 2015, 06:44:13 PM
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I'd love to see more 'smaller' gigs myself, for reasons stated, but I do wonder about the feasibility of it with the band's fan base size and all, obviously. The fan club thing would certainly be a good option, as it would cut off the sky-high scalper prices at the knees. But I can already see the comments about why it's only restricted to the fan club or why they haven't offered anything that good in the past! That or how we're all at the mercy of radio station calls, which I suppose is better than nothing...

You're probably right about the fan club #s being onerous - & that would also likely include scalper's who have multiple memberships to get tickets.  Hundreds of thousands of memberships? More? I dunno. 

I liked that the Roxy had only 450 capacity, the contest online (10/10), & restrictions for CA residents only (most not to my advantage unfortunately but good for locals).  This was of course in 'debt' of the Xmas show appearance but I suggested that maybe in future it could be consideration. Aside from the celeb VIPs it seemed like a great format.  Maybe it could be paid tickets & benefit one of their charities, instead of free - but their regular, not extortionist prices - or what mark reed suggests as far as promo/release & media . 


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Here's a thought for the idea of smaller gigs : Fan Club only shows, by lottery, 1 ticket per Fan Club member, held in smaller venues (2,000 or so capacity), played for free, as part of album launch promo tours. Instead of having u2 spend all day to play 3 song to 250 people chosen at random by a TV company, get them to play a small, 10-15 song set to 2,000 people and then gift the set free to a TV company or radio station with say, 1,000 tickets for the TV station and 2,000 for the fanclub. That'll give fans the 'small show', prevent the aggravation of U2 playing 10 miles from your house that you don't stand a chance of getting to, and be better than the for-TV neutered experience. For example, they played somewhere on last years promo tour that is actually walking distance from my house!

Highly doubt they'd ever do a free concert for 2000+ people unless it were for charity but I think all of your other ideas are great. 

Anyway, just dreaming out loud here.  :D Would be amazing if they could do this somehow in tandem with the current tour - 1 night per state or province.

*avoiding bubble, setlist & Boss discussion*