April 19, 1981 - A 14 year old me hanging out with a friend and stuck with his older brother who works at a place by the Ohio State campus. Because he's responsible for us we have to tag along while he works and try to stay out of trouble and the way. So here we are, sitting around in the backstage area of The Agora acting all cool like we run the place and we're something special while we watch a crew of guys setting up equipment, running wires, and checking instruments. These guys are super cool taking time out to talk with a couple of kids and letting us help a bit. Their Irish accents are awesome! They're almost finished when this dude with a freaky blonde afro come by and checks out the bass. We say hi and discover he is the bass player for the band. Cool!
A few minutes later, some scrawny guy comes out and begins fidgeting with the guitars on stage. We're guessing he's the guitarist (duh) so we say hi to him. Now this guy is really cool, talking with us, telling us about his time in the States, where he's been and going, asking us about the music we listen to (mostly crap at this stage in life), do we play instruments, just making small talk. After a few minutes, the two of them head back to a room and my friend and I go to get some snacks. After a while, the big brother comes and tells us to get back stage and quit bugging everyone, so we do.
The two musician we met earlier are with two more guys now. I am so enthralled by their accents and so badly want to be Irish. Being kids, we ignore the brother and start talking to these guys again. It's really cool that they willing to sit around before a show shooting the breeze with a couple of goofy kids. It's at this point that I finally ask the guys the name of their band. U2, what a weird name, like the plane I surmised. They go off to get ready for their show and tell us to enjoy the show. I figure they can't be that great because I've never heard them on the radio (again, stupid kid), but figure it doesn't matter because I'm backstage at a concert on campus; I'm on top of the world.
We goof around for a while until the show's about to start. Cue the music. HOLY CRAP! This is like nothing I have ever heard before in my life. The most awesome sounds coming from the cool looking guitar, the thud of the drums shaking the walls, bass reverberating through my bones, and that singer with the weird name, I forget it but it was something Latin (which I'm taking at Catholic school). My friend wants to go screw around some more, but I am in awe and not about to go anywhere. I'm hooked (for life as it turns out). After the show, I get the chance to tell them that I loved the music, the show, them, etc. - I was star struck, mesmerized. This was the night that I left the 70's FM rock world behind and embraced the future of music. My only regret is (it didn't matter at the time, but I am kicking myself now) that I didn't ask for autographs. Oh yea now I remember, Bono is the guy's name. It means good.