Readers' Poll: The 10 Best MTV VMAs Performances

Neil Young jamming with Pearl Jam, Britney wearing a snake and your other favorite moments from MTV's wild show

10

U2 - "Please" (1997)

U2 weren't in a very good place when the 1997 Video Music Awards rolled around. Their commercially disappointing (though vastly under-appreciated) album Pop hit shelves earlier that year, and they were in the middle of an American stadium tour that struggled to sell tickets in many markets. They just couldn't seem to find a single that connected. Their fourth attempt was the anti-war ballad "Please," which they felt they didn't quite nail on the record. It was re-worked for radio and they debuted a slightly stripped-down rendition at the awards show. This was the year Sting sang with Puff Daddy and Bruce Springsteen sat in with the Wallflowers, so it didn't get much attention. Looking back now, it's clear this is one of the best TV moments in U2's history — even if the only attention it generated was a joke by Chris Rock that Bono looked like the Unabomber. 

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