“Somewhere I guess,” Hegarty shrugged.
“Well you’re a beautiful man,” Friday continued.
“I’m not a man,” Hegarty countered firmly.
“Well you’re a beautiful person,” Friday said and smiled.
The two sparring singers then started into a memorable version of the first ever Virgin Prunes song, “He Got What He Wanted,” and their voices complimented each other so well that it became a highlight of the evening.
The delicacy of that duet was instantly obliterated by a jump out of your seats sensational announcement. The Virgin Prunes had reformed to sing “Caucasian Walk,” a sonic wall of rock power that vividly underlines why this band were and are so important to the genesis of U2.
This lot rock out like no Irish band ever has or will. The well-heeled audience was astounded, and you could tell that suited this band just fine.
Shane MacGowan took to the stage with a near death pallor, a bottle of booze and the ability to galvanize an opera house with a simple song. “A Rainy Night in SoHo,” one of his own classics, was so good in performace he sang the song’s finale three times. Each time it was more powerful than the last.
Then Joel Grey, the star of the Oscar winning film “Cabaret,” a film that Friday was obsessed with in his youth, picked up act two (yes, this concert had two acts) with a rousing performance of his signature song from the film, “Willkomen.” Soon after Friday was joined onstage by Rufus Wainwright and actress Scarlett Johansson to sing a song in honor of the famous Irish drag queen Mr. Pussy.
Lady GaGa was an unannounced surprise, and Lou Reed’s also unexpected appearance with Laurie Anderson lifted the roof of the building. The grand finale saw Friday, U2, Reed, MacGowan, Courtney Love and Johansson singing David Bowie’s “The Jean Genie.” Bowie himself was rumored to be in attendance, and if he was I’m certain he would have embraced Friday as one of his own.
Asked if he’d celebrate after the show with a few pints Friday replied, “I never drink pints. I’d turn into Van Morrison. If he reads that he’ll kill me.
“But there’ll be fine wines quaffed after the event, I’ll tell you that baby. It’ll be a very loud, late night in upper Manhattan.”