Last night, U2 paid tribute to the late Shane MacGowan during their show at Las Vegas’ Sphere, honoring the iconic Irish songwriter and punk singer with a rendition of the Pogues’ classic, “A Rainy Day in Soho.”
Addressing the audience, Bono urged everyone to join in singing for MacGowan as the band delivered an interpretation of one of the Pogues frontman’s most significant compositions. With a touch of solemnity, Bono modified the lyrics to acknowledge the recent passing of the Irish music legend, singing, “McGowan’s song is never over, but we may never find out what it means/ You’re the measure of my dreams.”
The performance echoed a previous collaboration between Bono and Johnny Depp in 2018, where they had shared the stage for a rendition of the Poguetry in Motion track during a concert celebrating MacGowan’s 60th birthday. In an interview, MacGowan had modestly described their rendition as “alright.”
MacGowan, a pivotal figure in Irish music, passed away at the age of 65 on Thursday. In the wake of his death, tributes poured in from artists like Nick Cave, Flea, Irish President Michael Higgins, and Bruce Springsteen, who emphasized the timeless nature of MacGowan’s music, predicting that people would still be singing his songs a century from now.
On Instagram, U2 commemorated MacGowan with a sketch of the singer accompanied by the caption, “Shane MacGowan’s songs were perfect so he or we, his fans, didn’t have to be…”
Watch U2’s tribute to MacGowan below.