Tribute bands everywhere will be buoyed by the spectacle of U2 giving their tribute band Acrobat the limelight at a Toronto gig on Monday night.
U2 brought Acrobat out to play their Rattle and Hum hit Desire while the band themselves stepped back and took it in, with Bono joining in at end to add some harmonica licks.
Afterwards, he pointed to his imitation frontman and said, “I’ve always wanted to meet you. Love your early work.”
“He pulled us up, and I was shocked that he handed me the mic,” Acrobat frontman and Bono impersonator Gabriel Pate told Rolling Stone. “They’ve brought other musicians up before, but Bono usually trades verses with them and he basically still runs the show. For him to pass the mic over to me was amazing. I had a split second of just thinking, ‘Holy shit!’ Then I was like, ‘Okay, I gotta go do this now’.”
Members of Acrobat have joined U2 on-stage before. Bassist Mark Baker joined them on-stage in Montreal during the current Innocence + Experience World Tour. He also appeared in the documentary U2 BROTHR, about his life as a U2 superfan.
The tour ends in Boston on July 10th and the band will pick up again in September for a number of international dates.
Watch: U2 perform with cover band Acrobat