At the festival, U2 follow young rockabilly band, The Polecats who've just had a hit with David Bowie's "John I'm Only Dancing" and could have a current one with Marc Bolan's "Jeepster" — and are to be preceded by Elvis Costello and The Attractions, who are to be followed by Ian Dury and The Magnificent Blockheads.
Not the easiest spot in the world.
And yet the audience clamber stagewards to the front, eager to see this band whose first introduction may only have been one Top of the Pops appearance a couple of weeks earlier. There's an excitement in the air. Happiness. During "I Will Follow" Adam's base pumps like a heat to the bloodstream alongside Larry's drums. During "Out of Control" they play and sing a smiling snippet from The Monkees "I'm A Believer" and for their second encore Bono dons a guitar and gives it a glorious Pete Townshend thrashing.
Elvis and The Attractions were superb. Ian and The Blockheads won the day. But, if it's a race we're talking about... with the Newcastle Festival audience as judges, U2 came a very strong second...
On October 1st, U2's second LP is released. It's called October and again its produced by the magnificent Steve Lillywhite.