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About 20 years ago, when I was a teenager, I was looking for something to keep me busy for the afternoon while on holidays at my Mum’s house.  I picked up a video called The Wall.  This was the beginning of a strong and stable love affair with Pink Floyd.  I became what you can call a fan and this is the one band that has always stayed with me.  I have all their albums and still enjoy listening to them.

So, when, last October, I read Zhu’s post about her going to see Roger Waters performing The Wall in Ottawa, I was extremely jealous (have a look at her pictures).  After a bit of browsing online, I discovered that Roger Waters would be coming to Dublin in May.  I rarely go to big concerts – they are often to expensive for my tight budget and I like small venues – but this is The Wall we are talking about.  Moreover, I already have a Pink Floyd-related regret.  In 1994, I bought a ticket to go to see Pink Floyd’s tour The Division Bell.  However, I was still young, the concert was far away and I was supposed to go there alone, plus I didn’t like the latest album, so I sold my ticket.  I have since seen the Pulse dvd; little did I know then that a good portion of the concert would be Dark Side of the Moon.  Thus, this time it didn’t take me long to spend the money and buy a ticket; I knew I would regret it if I didn’t and one can do a little excess every so often, no?

I thus headed for Dublin on Monday.  It was a bit of a trek to get there as it was also the day Obama chose to visit our capital.  However, it was well worth every effort.  I parked outside the city and took the Luas to get in.  I was lucky to catch one of the last trams actually going into the city centre , as afterwards they were stopped because of road closures.  After a brief stop at my hostel, I had to wait for another tram to bring me to the venue.  The streets were really busy and it was amusing to try guessing who was there for Obama or for Waters, although not that difficult.  The tram was delayed, so when it finally arrived, there were a big crowd getting in.  We were all going to the same place.  It was packed, but there was a great atmosphere.  A group started singing “Vera” and I could feel the excitement growing in me. 

Waiting for the show to begin...

I still had a bit of free time before the start of the concert, so I was able to explore the room and find the spot I would probably occupy later.  I came across some friends I hadn’t seen for a while; I was getting even more hyper!  Then… the lights went down… and the show began with a bang! 

This is a video of the opening and “In the Flesh”; I didn’t make this one as I was to far from the stage at the time and decided to leave my friends to go back to my elected spot, close enough to the stage on the left hand-side (the down side was that I couldn’t see the screen in the middle of the stage).  It seems to have been a good choice as my friends later complained of the sound’s poor quality: the sound did not travel well under the seated area…

"One of My Turns", Roger Waters

What can I say?  How can I say it?  It was brilliant!  I cried, I laughed, I sang, I screamed, I danced…  It was just fantastic and I’m still under the spell.  This is what you call a show!  I also must say that it was quite appreciable to get a mature audience.  Most of us were old fans and there was a sort of electricity going through the room; we were all sharing this amazing moment.

For the second half of the concert, I managed to get even closer to the stage and look who appeared from the wall only a few meters in front of me singing “Nobody Home”:

The 2010-11 show is very faithful to the one Pink Floyd put up 30 years ago.  During the first half of the concert the wall is progressively build up until complete.  The second half happens in front of a complete wall until it is finally torn down.  Tear down the wall, tear down the wall, …

The wall at the beginning of the concert

Second half of the concert, the wall is complete.

The props were there: the flying pig and the giant teacher muppet.

"Run like Hell", flying pig"The Happiest Days of Our Lives", giant teacher

The lights and animations were incredible.  There were projections on the wall from the Alan Parker film, but also extracts of past concerts.

The planes on "Goodbye Blue Sky"

"The Trial"

I found the situation somewhat ironical and paradoxical: a crowd of fans cheering a star who performs a satire of totalitarianism.  However, the impact of experiencing Pink’s concert live was powerful and maybe even more significant. 

“Run like Hell”

I made a few short videos, especially during the 2nd half because, although I was close to the front, there was a giant in front of me and, sometimes, I could see better with the camera!  Have a look and enjoy!

A classic:

The wall is complete and the crowd is singing:

Lights searching the crowd:

Waving goodbye:

“Outside the Wall”:

Photo set of the show:

Ok, these are not the best, I’m still practising on the photo shooting, and, as you might guess, I can’t wait for the dvd release!

I haven’t done much this summer, but one of the highlights was Mick Flannery‘s gig in The Blackbird in Ballycotton. The gig was brilliant, even though Mick Flannery had the flu. It was in Ballycotton’s famous pub, The Blackbird. They have a small room for concert and that’s where the gig happened. There must have been about forty people attending so it was really intimate. My friends and I loved it. He’s an excellent singer, able to make your heart pound.

I let you enjoy one of the videos I made there.

Although it was a small gig, there was a support act by Christine Deady, whom I had never heard of but will definitely be looking out for, she had a lovely voice and a certain talent.