Anniversary, Milestones, Video — March 9, 2012 at 6:41 am

Milestones: U2’s ‘Joshua Tree’ is 25 today; watch full 1987 ‘Save the Yuppies’ concert

Twenty-five years ago today, U2 cemented itself as one of rock ‘n’ roll’s giants, releasing its epochal album The Joshua Tree to universal acclaim, monster radio play and huge sales. The band’s ubiquity would soon lead to backlash, but, for 1987 and 1988, U2 reigned supreme, powered by a near-perfect album on which everything gelled.

To celebrate this milestone, we present the band’s infamous “Save the Yuppies” concert from Nov. 11, 1987, when U2 set up in Justin Herman Plaza at San Francisco’s Embarcadero Center for a free concert. In the playlist below, you can watch the full 40-minute concert — the video’s a bit rough, but it sounds pretty good — which includes the cover of Bob Dylan’s “All Along the Watchtower” featured in “Rattle and Hum” (although you’ll see Bono’s “rock ‘n’ roll stops the traffic” graffiti spree took actually took place during “Pride”).

What are your favorite memories of The Joshua Tree? Share them in the comments below.



Setlist: U2, Justin Herman Plaza, San Francisco, CA, 11/11/87

1. “All Along The Watchtower”
2. “Sunday Bloody Sunday”
3. “Out Of Control”
4. “People Get Ready”
5. “Trip Through Your Wires”
6. “Silver And Gold”
7. “Helter Skelter”
8. “Help!”
9. “Pride (In The Name Of Love)”






  1. mmonikerjay

    The very first record I ever bought with my own money. Cassette of course…then there was no looking back.

  2. Well, this sounds nothing like the version on R&H, so maybe some overdubs were done? The guitar tone is different and the vocals are different, too. I’ve probably listened to R&H a hundred times…these differences (and other subtler ones) are easy to spot.

  3. Second CD I ever owned… recently purchased an original copy on vinyl for a $1, and will spin this along with Rattle and Hum this weekend in celebration!

  4. I always crowned this the their best work but it seems that tends to fall on Achtung Baby (great for sure) but “near-perfect” is sooo right.

  5. April 1987 Joshua Tree tour, Chicago. Opening with “Where the streets..”, 10 min version of Bad, spring hill mining in the set. Flawless concert.

  6. I have always felt this was U2’s masterpiece. I cannot count how many times I have played this record, probably in the thousands. The funny thing is that I have never tired of it. Sounds as fresh as the day it was released. I think it will always be a record I hold close to my heart.

  7. Ridiculously overrated, Achtung Baby is their finest album.

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