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Did U2 and Bono Just Play The Largest Concert Ever?


Sitting here on Monday morning I can’t make up my mind. Am I impressed with U2? Of course I am. Do I think it will be a growing trend? Certainly not. Anyone who missed it, last night on YouTube, U2 performed a live concert that was streamed by hundreds of thousands of viewers.

It was the first time that a large scale concert was simultaneously broadcasted around the world via the internet, for free! It gave rich and poor, young and old a chance to check out one of the largest bands in rock history in a live music event. The band proved that it could work, my question is does it make sense?
People love music but there is s stream of listening that is set in stone within many communities. You hear a song on the radio, you purchase said song (or album if you are kicking it old school) and you develop a relationship with the group. As time goes on, if you are given the opportunity to see the group live you might take advantage of that chance.
You’ll go in, buy merchandise, drink alcohol and pay to park. All the things that make concerts a profitable ventuer.
Trouble is, can a concert that you are watching live, on your 30-inch computer screen in surround sound, be an alternative to paying for a ticket? You bypass the expensive parts of going to the show and at the same time are surrounded by family and friends as opposed to the fat guy who can’t clap and is spilling beer on you.
I don’t think it’s likely but it is worth talking about. Can online concerts replace the entire live music experience?

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2 Legacy Comments

  • Comment by Anonymous posted October 26, 2009 at 16:30

    i wouldnt say they will ever replace a live concert experience, but i would say that more bands will follow in U2's footsteps because of the free publicity and opportunity to expand your fan base risk free…
    i know that nosebleed tickets for U2's tour are over $100 and mezzenine or lodge seating was at around $250 (ridiculous), so for people who love U2 but simply can't afford that or say they didn't come to your city, it is awesome to provide a free live concert over the internet.
    i don't know however how fans who paid that obscene price felt about the fact that the concert was being broadcasted for free cause i would say with HD cameras and sound, watching it at home would be better then say the back of the pit where Bono looks like a pin head…
    i guess only time will tell…

  • Comment by Anonymous posted October 26, 2009 at 23:48

    i think that there will always be people who will want to experience it live. even if it is broadcast live on youtube or whereever you still don't get that same live feeling. it just feels like you are watching a band perform on tv.
    i think the idea is really cool and i'm sure i would log on and watch for a band that i may not care to pay to go see for 250 dollars.
    but it simply is not the same. even if you are in the very back of a pit and can't see the singer- the energy is still there and the people around you are dancing and singing and having fun together, thats not something that can be replace.