Saint Bob’s short on converts

Bob Geldof
Sometimes a truly hilarious story gets posted to the SMH site on the weekend, and those who use their computers purely at work miss out. And I’d hate to think of anyone missing out on this one. “Saint Bob” Geldof recently had one of the most humiliating experiences I’ve ever heard of. What if you gave a concert at a 12,000 seat venue and only 45 turned up? That number again… 45.

Here’s the AFP story: Live 8 hero Bob Geldof has been forced to cancel two concerts in Italy because of lack of public interest, after only 45 people turned up to see him perform in Milan, Italy’s La Stampa newspaper reported.

Geldof walked out of Milan’s 12,000-capacity Arena Civica without playing, given the paltry attendance.

His manager explained that a concert for less than 400 people would not be viable, the newspaper said.

The 54-year-old Irish rocker, who said he had flown in from South Africa for the gig, sought to placate angry fans afterwards by promising to give a free concert in September.

A scheduled performance in Rome, for which 300 tickets had been sold, was also cancelled, La Stampa said.

Live 8 indeed. I love the manager’s comment – they’ve booked a 12,000 seat arena and they think that fewer than 400 would be viable?

And how many complaints could there have been, exactly if he only sold 345 tickets? He could pretty much give that free concert in his lounge room.

Geldof’s relief efforts have been admirable, with the significant exception of him giving Bono yet another platform to tiresomely preach on about the state of the world. (He really need to change his name from the Latin for “Good voice” to the Latin for “whiny, self-righteous voice”) But I can’t imagine wanting to see him perform. The only song of his I can think of is the Boomtown Rats’ I Don’t Like Mondays, which is about a gun massacre. Not exactly a pleasant night out.

Looks like Geldof’s better off with live gigs where he doesn’t play.

Dominic Knight

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