Back on this day in 1987, U2 performed from the roof of a liquor store in downtown Los Angeles (7th St. & S. Main St. to be specific). They were filming a music video for ‘Where The Streets Have No Name’, the opening track the third single off ‘The Joshua Tree’. The video was meant to be an homage to The Beatles, who performed on a rooftop in their film ‘Let It Be’.
During the shoot U2 played an eight-song set, which included four performances of “Where the Streets Have No Name”. Prior to filming, a week was spent reinforcing the roof to ensure it would not collapse if fans were to somehow get on it. A backup generator was put on the roof so the shooting could continue in the event that police cut the power, which inevitably did happen during filming. In fact, the police shutting down the shoot in the video, were actually the police shutting down the shoot. However, in 2007, band manager Paul McGuinness revealed that much of the confrontation with the police was exaggerated; the group were hoping to get shut down by the authorities in order to dramatize the music video, but the police continually gave them extensions for shooting.
The video received the 1989 Grammy Award for Best Performance Music Video.