Created By: SeanMurrayI on February 18, 2011 Last Edited By: SeanMurrayI on February 21, 2011
Troped

Rooftop Concert

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Page Type:
Trope

A band holds a free performance live from a rooftop in an urban area, often with a large crowd forming on the streets below and police seeking to shut the performance down.

The Trope Maker, of course, being The Beatles' final live performance together on the rooftop of their Apple Corps building in London, which came to an end when police asked them to turn the sound down. Often seen imitated for a Shout-Out or Homage.

Examples

Film
  • The story of The Rutles, The Rutles: All You Need Is Cash, which serves as a parody of The Beatles, includes such a concert in which they are shown performing their song called "Get Up And Go," an imitation of The Beatles song "Get Back."
    • The band (minus Eric Idle) also held a rooftop concert in the mid-1990's to celebrate the release of their "greatest hits" album Archaeology, which coincided with the release of The Beatles Anthology.
  • The end of Empire Records features Coyote Shivers playing a concert on the roof of the record store, giving Gina the chance to fulfill her dream of performing with a band.
  • Across the Universe ends with one of these after all of the characters (minus Lucy) reunite.
  • 10 Things I Hate About You ends with the camera moving from Kate and Patrick's kiss to the band Letters to Cleo playing on top of Padua High School.

Live-Action TV
  • Andre on Victorious sings a song on the roof of his school to get a deal with a record company.
  • On The Late Show with David Letterman a few bands have performed on top of the marquee of the Ed Sullivan Theatre (where The Late Show is taped), including Paul McCartney. Also Eminem and JayZ performed on the roof proper.
  • Whenever MTV's annual Video Music Awards are held at Radio City Music Hall in New York City, it's very common to see a band perform on top of the venue's marquee during the red carpet pre-show.
  • Ben Stiller parodied the U2 music video for "Where The Streets Have No Name" in one of his many segments as Bono on The Ben Stiller Show. Bono interprets an ordinary guy asking him to turn him sound down as someone trying to "shut him down" as nobody on the street below pays any attention to him singing from a building roof.

Music Video
  • U2's video for "Where The Streets Have No Name" sees the band draw a large crowd on the streets of Los Angeles while performing live on a rooftop. Meanwhile, the LAPD aims to shut them down.

Video Games

Web Original
  • The New York City-based performance art group Improv Everywhere once had a cover band pretend to be U2 and play some of the band's songs on top of a Manhattan rooftop... until the NYPD shut them down.

Western Animation
  • The Simpsons saw Homer's barbershop quartet, The Be Sharps, reunite on the roof of Moe's Tavern for a performance. George Harrison, when passing by, comments "It's Been Done." Meanwhile, Chief Wiggum, the band's Pete Best, arranges for them to be tear gassed.

Real Life
  • Several Beatles cover bands are reported as having played on rooftops on January 30, 2009--the fortieth anniversary of The Beatles' own rooftop concert.
  • The Protomen once held a rooftop concert, much to the dismay of the band's drummer Demon Barber, who was terrified of heights.

Needs More Examples, Rolling Updates
Community Feedback Replies: 15
  • February 18, 2011
    vilefile
    • The end of Empire Records features Coyote Shivers playing a concert on the roof of the record store, giving Gina the chance to fulfill her dream of performing with a band.
  • February 18, 2011
    cheeseypoofs
  • February 18, 2011
    randomsurfer
    on The Late Show with David Letterman a few bands have performed on top of the marquee of the Ed Sullivan Theatre (where The Late Show is taped), including Paul Mc Cartney. Also Eminem and JayZ performed on the roof proper.
  • February 18, 2011
    originalhobbit
  • February 18, 2011
    LeeM
    ^^FYI, The Rutles' Archaeology was a faux Greatest Hits compilation. In reality the songs were either new, or adaptations of earlier Neil Innes solo tracks.
  • February 18, 2011
    SeanMurrayI
    ^Hence why "greatest hits" is already in quotation marks. There's no real reason to go into any real detail about that here though; it's completely beside the point.
  • February 18, 2011
    Ronka87
    • Ten Things I Hate About You ends with the camera moving from Kate and Patrick's kiss to the band Letters to Cleo playing on top of Padua High School.
  • February 19, 2011
    chihuahua0
    It looks launchable.
  • February 19, 2011
    SeanMurrayI
    This isn't even two days old yet.
  • February 20, 2011
    Josech
    Real Life: One of Improv Everywhere's missions was to stage a rooftop concert as the band U2. [1]
  • February 20, 2011
    lalalei2001
    Real Life: The Protomen did a rooftop concert once, to the dismay of drummer Demon Barber, who was terrified of heights.
  • February 20, 2011
    jaclon909
    Video Games: The penultimate stage in The Beatles : Rock Band is the rooftop concert that the beatles performed.
  • February 20, 2011
    SeanMurrayI
    ^^^Yeah, I already filed that one under Web Original; it feels more appropriate there.
  • February 21, 2011
    hides
    Arnold has a piano on the roof in Hey Arnold.
  • February 21, 2011
    Captainbrass
    The Happy Mondays "perform" on a rooftop in the video for Step On, if playing on a rooftop for that purpose counts.
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