The Wall - Live in Berlin

Infobox Album
Name = The Wall - Live in Berlin
Type = live
Artist = Roger Waters

Caption = Original 1990 cover
Released = 10 September 1990
23 June 2003 (reissue)
Recorded = 21 July 1990
Genre = Progressive rock
Length =
Label = Mercury Records
Producer = Roger Waters
Nick Griffiths
Reviews =
* Allmusic Rating|3|5 [ link]
Last album = "Radio K.A.O.S."
This album = "The Wall - Live in Berlin"
Next album = "Amused to Death"
Misc = Extra album cover 2
Upper caption = Alternate cover
Type = album

Lower caption = Reissued 2003 cover

"The Wall - Live in Berlin" is a 1990 live album release by Roger Waters of a concert staging of Pink Floyd's "The Wall" in Berlin, Germany on 21 July 1990. The event's purpose was to commemorate the fall of the Berlin Wall. A video of the concert was also commercially released.


Held in Potsdamer Platz (a location which was part of the former "no-man's land" of the Berlin Wall), this concert was even bigger than the Pink Floyd era ones, as Waters built a 550-foot long and 82-foot high wall, which was broken down in the same show. [Schaffner, p. 308] The show had a sell-out crowd of over 250,000 people, and right before the performance started the gates were opened which enabled another 200,000 people to watch.

The concert was staged entirely at Waters' expense, and while he subsequently earned the money back from the sale of the CD and video releases of the album, he has donated all profits past his initial investment to World War Memorial Fund for Disaster Relief. Waters stated on the first airing of the making of The Wall on In the Studio with Redbeard in July 1989 that the only way he was to resurrect a live performance of The Wall was "if the Berlin Wall came down". A few months after the interview was broadcast, the wall came down.

Initially, Waters tried to get guest musicians like Peter Gabriel, Rod Stewart, Joe Cocker, Bruce Springsteen and Eric Clapton but they were either unavailable or turned it down. Also, on the same 1989 interview with Redbeard, Waters also stated that "I might even let Dave play guitar." On June 30, 1990 backstage at the Knebworth Pink Floyd performance at Knebworth '90,during a pre-show interview, David Gilmour responded to Roger's statement on an interview with Jim Ladd by saying that "he and the rest of Pink Floyd (Nick Mason and Rick Wright) had been given the legal go ahead to perform with Roger but had not been contacted." Two days later, on July 2, 1990 Waters appeared on the American rock radio call-in show Rockline and contradicted his Gilmour invite by saying, "I don't know where Dave got that idea".

In the end, the guest artists for the performance included Ute Lemper, The Band, The Hooters, Van Morrison, Sinéad O'Connor, Cyndi Lauper, Marianne Faithfull, Scorpions, Joni Mitchell, Jerry Hall, Paul Carrack, Tim Curry, Thomas Dolby, and Bryan Adams.

This performance had several differences from Pink Floyd's original production of The Wall show. Both "Mother" and "Another Brick in the Wall, Part II" (like in the 1980/81 concerts) were extended with solos by various instruments and the latter had a cold ending. "In The Flesh" (also like the 1980/81 concerts) has an extended intro, and "Comfortably Numb" featured dueling solos by the two guitarists as well as an additional chorus at the end of the song. "The Show Must Go On" is omitted completely, while both "The Last Few Bricks" and "What Shall We Do Now?" are included (The Last Few Bricks was shortened). Also, the performance of the song "The Trial" had live actors playing the parts, with Thomas Dolby playing the part as the teacher, hanging from the wall.

"The Wall - Live in Berlin" was released as a live recording of the concert, although a couple of tracks were excised from the CD version, and the Laserdisc video in NTSC can still be found through second sourcing. A DVD was released in 2003 in the USA by Island/Mercury Records and internationally by Universal Music (Region-free).

"Tribute," the London-based 'good causes' campaign company, was retained to harness worldwide media resources, which included televising the show live in 52 countries for 2 hours, up to 5 repeats of the show in each of 20 countries, a highlights television show in 65 countries and distribution of a double music CD and post-production VHS videotape by Polygram. Tribute also organised ticket sales for the live event.

Set list

* "In the Flesh?" by Scorpions
* "The Thin Ice" by Ute Lemper & Roger Waters & the Rundfunk Orchestra & Choir
* "Another Brick in the Wall (Part 1)" by Roger Waters; sax solo by Garth Hudson
* "The Happiest Days of Our Lives" by Roger Waters
* "Another Brick in the Wall (Part 2)" by Cyndi Lauper; guitar solos by Rick DiFonzo & Snowy White, synth solo by Thomas Dolby
* "Mother" by Sinéad O'Connor & The Band; accordion by Garth Hudson, vocals by Rick Danko & Levon Helm; acoustic instruments by The Hooters.
* "Goodbye Blue Sky" by Joni Mitchell & the Rundfunk Orchestra & Choir ; flute by James Galway
* "Empty Spaces/What Shall We Do Now?" by Bryan Adams & Roger Waters & the Rundfunk Orchestra & Choir
* "Young Lust" by Bryan Adams, guitar solos by Rick DiFonzo & Snowy White
* "Oh My God - What a Fabulous Room" by Jerry Hall (intro to "One of My Turns")
* "One of My Turns" by Roger Waters
* "Don't Leave Me Now" by Roger Waters
* "Another Brick in the Wall (Part 3)" by Roger Waters (followed by the medley The Last Few Bricks) & the Rundfunk Orchestra & Choir
* "Goodbye Cruel World" by Roger Waters
* "Hey You" by Paul Carrack
* "Is There Anybody Out There?" by The Rundfunk Orchestra & Choir; classical guitars by Rick DiFonzo & Snowy White
* "Nobody Home" by Roger Waters & the Rundfunk Orchestra & Choir, guitar solos by Snowy White
* "Vera" by Roger Waters & the Rundfunk Orchestra & Choir
* "Bring the Boys Back Home" by The Rundfunk Orchestra & Choir & the Military Orchestra and Choir of the Soviet Army
* "Comfortably Numb" by Van Morrison, Roger Waters & The Band & the Rundfunk Orchestra & Choir, guitar solos by Rick DiFonzo & Snowy White
* "In the Flesh" by Roger Waters, Scorpions , the Rundfunk Orchestra and Choir, and the Military Orchestra and Choir of the Soviet Army
* "Run Like Hell" by Roger Waters, Scorpions
* "Waiting for the Worms" by Roger Waters, Scorpions and the Rundfunk Orchestra and Choir
* "Stop" by Roger Waters
* "The Trial" by The Rundfunk Orchestra and Choir, featuring:
**Tim Curry as the Prosecutor
**Thomas Dolby as the Teacher
**Ute Lemper as the Wife
**Marianne Faithfull as the Mother
**Albert Finney as the Judge
* "The Tide is Turning (After Live Aid)" by the Company (lead vocals by Roger Waters, Joni Mitchell, Cyndi Lauper, Bryan Adams, Van Morrison and Paul Carrack.) & the Rundfunk Orchestra & Choir.


The Company
*Roger Waters: Vocals, bass guitar, acoustic guitar on "Mother", rhythm guitar on "Hey You."
**Klaus Meine: Vocals.
**Rudolf Schenker: Guitar.
**Matthias Jabs: Guitar.
**Francis Buchholz: Bass guitar.
**Herman Rarebell: Drums.
*Ute Lemper: Vocals.
*Cyndi Lauper: Percussion, vocals.
*Thomas Dolby: Synthesizer, vocals.
*Sinéad O'Connor: Vocals.
*The Band:
**Levon Helm: Vocals.
**Rick Danko: Vocals.
**Garth Hudson: Accordion, soprano saxophone.
*The Hooters:
**Eric Bazilian: Guitar.
**Rob Hyman: Keyboards.
**John Lilley: Guitar.
**Fran Smith Jr.: Bass guitar.
**David Uosikkinen: Drums.
*Joni Mitchell: Vocals.
*James Galway: Flute.
*Bryan Adams: Guitar, vocals.
*Jerry Hall: Vocals.
*Paul Carrack: Vocals.
*Van Morrison: Vocals.
*Tim Curry: Vocals.
*Marianne Faithfull: Vocals.
*Albert Finney: Vocals.

The Bleeding Heart Band
*Rick DiFonzo: Guitars.
*Snowy White: Guitars.
*Andy Fairweather-Low: Bass guitar, guitar, backing vocals.
*Peter Wood: keyboards, organ, synthesizers.
*Nick Glennie-Smith: Keyboards, organ, synthesizers.
*Graham Broad: Drums, electronic percussion.
*Stan Farber: Backing vocals.
*Joe Chemay: Backing vocals.
*Jim Haas: Backing vocals.
*John Joyce: Backing vocals.

*The Rundfunk Orchestra, directed by Michael Kamen.
*The Rundfunk Choir.
*The Military Orchestra and Choir of the Soviet Army, directed by Igor Agafonnikov.
*Paddy Moloney (member of The Chieftans. Listed in album credits, but contribution is unknown.)

Performance notes

* Before the beginning of the show, brief performances by The Hooters, The Band and The Chieftains (with guest James Galway) were held, but none of the songs was ever officially released.

* In the actual concert on live television, the second song, "The Thin Ice" and part of the third song, "Another Brick in the Wall (Part 1)", were disrupted when a circuit breaker tripped. It was reset, but immediately tripped again so they had to rewire some equipment. Those two songs had to be re-recorded for the issue of the videotape.

* The live performance of "Mother" was also hounded by a power failure. Roger Waters tried to get Sinéad O'Connor to sing her parts anyway, or mime the song, while the error was being fixed. Offended by being asked to mime, she didn't return after the show to re-record the performance (which is how "The Thin Ice" was saved for the CD/Video release.) Instead, the release version of "Mother" comes from the dress rehearsal on the previous night before the concert. Consequently, the large projection of Gerald Scarfe's mother character that was projected on the screen during the concert cannot be seen on the video or DVD versions.

* Bryan Adams appeared to be merely miming his guitar-playing in Young Lust, and the Scorpions appear to be doing the same on all their instruments during the fascist rally sequence; the reasons for this are unclear.

* Jerry Hall was criticized for her part as the groupie in the track One of My Turns.

* The Wife's part of "The Trial" had to be redone in studio, because the image of the live recording had poor quality. What is seen in the video issue is a close-up of Ute Lemper, against a dark background, lip-syncing to the original live sound.

* Shot on Potsdamer Platz, the no man's land between East and West Germany, the producers didn't know if the area would be filled with mines - no one did. Before setting up, they did a sweep of the area and found a cache of munitions and a previously unknown SS Leibstandarte Adolf Hitler bunker. The Leibstandarte Adolf Hitler started as Hitler's elite personal bodyguard but were later diverted to Eastern and Western fronts. There is a misconception probably due to the SS division's name that the bunker found was the Führerbunker or the place were Adolf Hitler committed suicide which is false. The Führerbunker was in another location. [ [ Hitler's bunker ] ]

* At the request of the concert producers, part of the Berlin Wall was kept in place as a security fence behind the stage.

*Paddy Moloney, bandleader for The Chieftains, is listed as a guest performer in the show. Although The Chieftains played a daytime set before the concert, his solo contribution to the main show remains a mystery.

*During the final chanting of "Tear down the wall!" in the Trial sequence, the wall has a projection of a concrete and graffiti marked semblance of the Berlin Wall, just before it is torn down.

*The live Van Morrison version of "Comfortably Numb" is used in the Martin Scorsese film "The Departed". It is later used in HBO's 'The Sopranos'. Morrison also performed this version on his 2008 concerts.

*During the Run Like Hell performance, the giant inflatable black pig that appears over the top of the wall actually knocks a few bricks off the top. After this, it doesn't move again and very little light is shone in its direction. It then gets quietly removed from the set at the beginning of Waiting for the Worms.


* Schaffner, Nicholas. "Saucerful of Secrets: The Pink Floyd Odyssey", 1991. ISBN 0-517-57608-2

External links

* [ The Wall Live in Berlin]

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