Friday, March 26, 2010

Bono´s and Adam´s Visit to Africa

Robert Karanja briefs Adam Clayton of U2 about USAID COMPETE's role in nurturing East African handicrafts firms like Undugu to make connections with international buyers.
Bono spent almost 10 days in Africa on a "listening and learning trip" with ONE members and other celebrities (like Jessica Alba, for example), but what we didnt know is that Adam had gone with him too. He was spotted here and there, and we can see him in this picture appreciating local handicrafts.

Bono had a tight agenda which included visit to African artists in Senegal, a school in Ghana where they learned about the 1GOAL program that ties football playing to academics and  the organisation United Against Malaria. He also visited Tema Hospital in Ghana to learn about local efforts to prevent and fight HIV/AIDS. 

In Mozambique, Bono met with Armando Guebuza, the president of the country. He had dinner at a local pub, where Bono joined a local singer named Xavier Machiana in singing 'With Or Without You.'

(photo by  Talumba Katawala.)
 The ONE Campaign group moved on to Kenya, the last stop on this visit. Bono and friends visited a youth group in Kibera.Then he participated in the Pan African Media Conference in Nairobi, Kenya while Adam  visited Undugu Fair Trade Show with some ONE members (pics on top).

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Bono:Ireland´s Greatest?

RTÉ Television, the Irish channel, is asking its viewers:Who do you think is the greatest Irish person ever?

They commissioned Ipsos MRBI to conduct a survey of the Irish public asking them this same question. Among  the top forty names from that survey ,Bono´s name appears. Other Irish candidates are Michael Collins,Éamon de Valera,Ronnie Drew,Colin Farrell,Bob Geldof, James Joyce,Seamus Heaney...
If you think Bono deserves such an honour, you can vote here.

Jessica Alba on education for all

ONE just returned from a listening and learning trip to Senegal, Ghana, Mozambique and Kenya with members of the board and other supporters. Below, Jessica Alba talks about 1GOAL and the campaign to provide education to all children:

I had an incredible week, joining the ONE team on the road in Senegal and Ghana as part of the 1GOAL: Education for All campaign to make the lasting legacy of the upcoming World Cup education for every child.

I’ve wanted to travel to Africa my whole life and when offered the opportunity to listen and learn alongside ONE, it was a once in a lifetime chance that I couldn’t pass up. I’ve always admired the work ONE has done and being able to see the programs you’ve contributed to firsthand was inspiring.

We met African entrepreneurs and academics, spoke with civil society and private sector leaders. We sat with street vendors at a microfinance project, heard from women now able to save their and their children’s lives through ARV HIV/AIDS treatment. We met some amazing people, a new generation of leaders for not only the continent, but for the world.

My goal in going on this trip was to listen closely and learn more about the fight against global poverty. And what I heard repeatedly was that as I’ve always believed, education has the power to lift individuals, communities and entire nations out of poverty. From a promising business idea to a woman pushing cultural boundaries to stand up and speak out, education has been the key.

Today, 72 million kids are out of school around the world, the majority of them girls. Without an education, they are almost certain to be trapped in a life of poverty and robbed of the knowledge of their basic human rights. Every year a child is out of school is a year they lose in literacy, in health, in opportunity.

It doesn’t have to be this way. Since 2000, because people like you and governments took action, 48 million more children are in school. And if we come together around this World Cup, we can do even more to put education front and center. Together with FIFA, leading players and fans around the world, we can use the power of this truly global game to ensure that education for all is a lasting impact of the 2010 FIFA World Cup. We have a plan, we know how to beat this—all we need now is the will to make it happen.

Increased global education funding fights global poverty at the root, empowers girls and women, and promotes economic growth in poor countries around the world. And it’s a very smart investment: experts tell us that a girl will earn an additional 10% in income for every year of schooling she receives and be 50% less likely to become infected with HIV/AIDS. In Africa, children of mothers who receive five years of primary education are 40% more likely to live beyond the age of 5. It’s a proactive measure to avert many of the problems that plague developing countries.

More on Jessica´s experience, here.

To make a difference Join 1 Goal  and/or Join ONE

Monday, March 22, 2010

Bono´s Kenyan Diary

Grace Kerongo(Kenyan media worker) has published Bono´s out and about in Kenya. Here´s a summary:

The U2 lead man who was in the country to attend the two-day Pan Africa Media Conference at KICC in Nairobi which ended Friday 19, took time to visit with various community-based organisations and sample various entertainment joints.
  • On Monday night, he visited a youth group in Kibera. The following day he was treated to a dinner in his honour at a restaurant in Peponi that was attended by anti-corruption czar John Githong’o and American film director, and the founder of Freeform, Jesse Dylan
  • On Wednesday, the star did a series of interviews with a number of media personalities like NTV’s Smirti Vidyarthi at Talisman before he visited Ghetto Radio where he got acquainted with their work and meet Rowbow, a presenter in the station.
  • Later in the night, he headed out to Tamasha where he hang out with Afro soul singer Kaz, and listened to Gogosimo play.
  •  Then on Thursday night he had dinner at Casablanca's Osteria before curious patrons found out they were dining with a rock star. A source said people lined up for a photo opportunity with the legend.

360° in DVD

U2 will release the Pasadena Rose Bowl Concert in DVD.They are still working on the exact content of the DVD but the promise is that it will be released soon.

Can´t wait to relive or live for the first time those wonderful moments!!!

Register here for more information.

Friday, March 19, 2010

U2: The Early Years

Proud Galleries , one of Europe´s most popular privately funded photographic gallery , presents U2 The Early Years by Colm Henry, an exclusive ,never before seen photographic exploration of popular music´s most commercially successful and critically acclaimed group.
A free lance photographer working on emerging Irish music magazine Hot Press, Colm Henry came across a young and unsigned U2 when they were featured in the publication.

Henry´s photo exhibit is on display in London from 14th April to 2nd May. More information:

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Bono is in Nairobi for Pan African Media Conference

Bono, is in Nairobi to familiarise himself with the challenges facing ordinary Kenyans.

The  singer scheduled to participate in one of the Pan African Media Conference sessions as a panellist, met a group of women on Monday night and also visited a youth group in Kibera on Wednesday. “I am happy to be in Kenya and also participate in the Pan African Media Conference since there is so much to learn, share and speak about in Africa,” said Bono, who spoke to the Daily Nation at a city restaurant.

His trip has been organised by a group of young entrepreneurs, among them the former anti-corruption czar John Githongo. Bono, the U2 band lead vocalist, welcomed the media conference that begins on Thursday, saying the meeting would provide a platform for top leaders in Africa and abroad to discuss topical issues about the continent.

“The conference attracted my attention because I am one of those who believe in brand Africa, a better Africa for Africans,” said Bono, who is the voice behind some of the popular rock tunes like Beautiful Day, Vertigo, Elevation and With Or Without You.

The Pan African Media Conference is part of the Nation Media Group’s golden jubilee celebrations. It has attracted various personalities, including serving and former heads of state, business people, top journalists, human rights activists and academics.

Bono urged the African leadership, who will be represented at the conference, to embrace good governance, describing it as the pillar for development. “The world is watching Kenya. If they see political intransigence and old guards refusing change, investors will go and this will not benefit the country,” he added.

Bono said Kenya must have a strong civil society to keep the government on its toes and ensure public funds and resources were used for the benefit of those in need. He said his group, ONE, will be working closely with the civil society and young entrepreneurs to find ways of helping ordinary Kenyans and others on the continent to improve their livelihood.

Already, one of the groups in the country, Slums Information Development and Resource Centres, has benefited from Bono’s initiative by winning an award worth $100,000 (Sh7.5 million) for its work in improving the lives of the youth. On Wednesday, the group, which also manages the popular radio station, Ghetto FM, hosted one of the world’s greatest personalities, who visited them to get acquainted with their work.

Bono urged young Kenyan entrepreneurs to take the initiative in developing the country. He said he would continue advocating debt cancellation for Africa. He said his efforts had so far been a success, leading to the cancellation of loans worth $70 billion (Sh5.25 trillion).

“The money was used by various governments in keeping more than 35 million children in Africa in schools and that is what I want to see happening more,” he said. Due to his advocacy in debt cancellation, Bono has become one of the world’s best-known poor man’s advocates.

He has been referred to as “the face of fusion philanthropy” for his success in enlisting powerful personalities in government institutions, the media, religious institutions, philanthropic organisations and the business world in coming to the aid of poor countries. In the debt cancellation campaign, Bono teamed up with Africa’s leading figures, among them former South African president Nelson Mandela and Archbishop Desmond Tutu, forcing developed countries to review their stand on aid and debt.

 More on this visit in the ONE blog. Spread the word, join the fight for extreme poverty, join ONE.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Gavin Bond Music Photos Exhibition

The Gavin Bond Music photos exhibition at Idea Generation (London) is certain to be a big hit with music fans from several generations. Showcasing his work from the last ten years, wiht the likes of U2, Grace Jones and The Killers among others in a stunning music photos exhibtion.

Gavin Bond music photos
An exhibition that is likely to appeal to all those with a passion for music and art, the Gavin Bond Music photos exhibition is sure to be one of the most rock and roll exhibitions in London this year. Featuring a whole host of classic and newcomer music stars, these stunning images have all been taken by the renowned fashion and music photographer Gavin Bond.

Rock and roll royalty
Taking part in the show at Idea Generation gallery are a plethora of musicians and bands that have been captured on camera in a unique or intimate way. Highlighting his skill for presenting a subject in an unusual way, you can see the likes of Bono, Grace Jones, Greenday, Steve Tyler, Ozzy Osbourne, Kings of Leon and No Doubt taken on stage or in their dressing rooms. Creative studio shots included in the Gavin Bond Music photos exhibition also add to the mix, as the stars get to portray different sides to their stage personas.

Gavin Bond made the Q magazine sesion of photos of U2 in December 2008.
The Gavin Bond Music photos exhibition takes place from from 10am - 6pm, Tuesday 23rd February - Sunday 21st March 2010 at Idea Generation gallery,London. Entrance is free.

Happy St Patrick´s Day!!

Happy St. Patrick´s Day to all Irish, Irish descendants and Pats all over the world!!!

Now a St Patrick´s Day message from our favourite band (circa 1982, via MTV)

ONE: Listening and Learning Trip Around Africa

ONE is embarking on a Listening and Learning trip to Senegal, Ghana, Mozambique and Kenya with members of the board and other supporters.
Mozambican President Armando Guebuza on Monday received the Sudanese multi-millionaire Mo Ibrahim, the president of the Foundation that bears his name, who is on a visit to Mozambique.

Mo Ibrahim is accompanied by members of various aid agencies, notably the Irish singer of the band U2, Paul Hewson, better known as Bono.
Speaking to the press after the meeting, Ibrahim said that he and Guebuza "discussed where Mozambique is coming from and where it's going. When the Portuguese abandoned the country, there was nothing here. There were no mechanics, there weren't even any taxi drivers. In short, there was nobody trained. But now, things have changed".

Ibrahim praised the progress Mozambique has made in recent years, and said that when he went home "I shall tell my friends that it's worthwhile investing in Mozambique".

Bono said he had been very struck by Guebuza. "The President is an impressive man. He's a businessman, which is what you need in your country", he declared.

"President Guebuza says he wants to work in partnership, but he refuses to accept that Official Development Aid should be used as a way of putting pressure on Mozambique", added Bono. "We agree with his position, but there must be accountability in this new relationship, and it must be proved that the money is being used in a sensible manner".

So far, there have only been two winners of the Mo Ibrahim prize - Chissano in 2007, and former Botswanan president, Festus Mogae, in 2008. The prize was not awarded in 2009.

The prize is awarded to a former African head of state, who was democratically elected, and who served out his constitutionally defined term of office. The five million dollars prize money is paid out over ten years, and there is a further 200,000 dollars a year until the end of the prize-winner's life. The Foundation may also pay a further 200,000 dollars a year, for ten years, to charitable causes which the winner wishes to support.

For more info on the trip and how to collaborate, click the ONE logo: Bono´s

Artificial Horizon: U2 Mixes It Up for the Fans

U2 has never been a band to shy away from spectacle, from the blitzkrieg-like barrage of TV screens during the band's Zoo TV tour in the early 1990s to the megalomania of the PopMart Tour, complete with a 100-foot-high golden McDonald's-like arch, in 1997. Since kicking off a now 34-year career as one of the most successful rock bands in the world, U2 has continued to push the boundaries of conventional rock wisdom. In fact, since Bono, the Edge, Larry Mullen, Jr. and Adam Clayton first came together -- just four young lads from Ireland, joined by a dream to create beautiful rock music -- there has rarely been an instance when they settled for the status quo.

Still riding high on the success of their latest album, No Line on the Horizon, U2 has delivered a special treat to its loyal fans with the limited edition remix-CD, Artificial Horizon, available only to subscribers. Those not willing to sign up for the band's official website are certain to find it on various online auction sites. This album is filled with remixes of U2's songs, from "Elevation" and "Vertigo" to the current hit "I'll Go Crazy If I Don't Go Crazy Tonight" and earlier numbers including "If God Will Send His Angles" and "Staring at the Sun." Ultimately, the album is for the fans, as these remixes are made to enhance the already polished work of the studio versions.
Remixes, however, are nothing new to U2. As Ralph Moore, an editor at Mixmag, writes, "U2 were one of the first bands to fully explore the idea that a remix could actually improve on a song's original grooves." In 1992, a Paul Oakenfold and Steve Osborne remix of U2's "Even Better Than The Real Thing" made it to number 8 on the music charts shortly after the original was released. While Artificial Horizon isn't a commercial release, there are plenty of gems to be found, like the almost transcendental sound of the "Staring at the Sun" ambient mix. This latest fan-only album, a follow-up to the Melon remix album released in 1995, proves U2 is unafraid to embrace experimentation, a facet of the band's personality that continues to be successful.

When U2 became "Rock's Hottest Ticket" in 1987, as billed on the cover of Time Magazine following the release of the Joshua Tree album, they were riding high on the success of a sound nurtured by producers Brian Eno and Daniel Lanois, a duo that had helped the band craft their previous album, The Unforgettable Fire. It was a sound that solidified U2's standing as rock superstar, but it also marked the end of traditional rock tunes for the Irish band.

As the 80's drew to a close, U2 was growing weary of its "traditional" sound, having become a band that couldn't escape playing its own greatest hits on the road. On December 30, 1989, Bono told fans attending a concert in Dublin, Ireland, "This is just the end of something for U2... we have to go away and dream it all up again." By this, Bono meant that U2, for its own creative sanity, had to re-think the style of music they were churning out, and hopefully, dream up something new.

And new was exactly what U2 produced, along with the help of Lanois and Eno. After spending a tumultuous time in the recording studio, U2 re-emerged onto the music scene with a game-changing album. Achtung Babywas "raw", "rough" and "straightforward," as the Edge would tell U2's fan-magazine Propaganda around the time of the album's release. Nabbing the band another Grammy for Best Rock Album, Achtung Baby told the world U2 was unafraid to change. The album was full of industrial rock sounds and electronic tricks. This wasn't the U2 of the 80's, but a U2 ready to embrace, and often set the course for the future of rock music.

Since 1991's Achtung Baby, U2 has continued to reinvent itself. 1997's Pop delivered a full-blown electronic and techno sound, followed up three years later by a slightly conservative and familiar sound with 2000's All That You Can't Leave Behind. But, familiar doesn't mean old when it comes to U2, as 2004's How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb proved, delivering "grandiose music from grandiose men," as Rolling Stone wrote in its album review.

Experimentation has paid off for U2, with their latest tour topping the charts last year, grossing more than $311 million, according to All 44 concert dates completely sold out in 2009, often within minutes of going on sale to the public. While there is no word as to when U2 might have a new album ready for release, all of the young whippersnappers currently clogging the music charts should be on guard, because when U2 has something to sing about, everybody tends to listen.

James Sims

Pop Culture Reporter and Critic

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Neil McCormick:The Man who wants to kill Bono

Many rock pundits are more than happy to write about their successes in life, but few would be prepared to espouse their failures so enthusiastically.

And even fewer would be lucky enough to find their efforts the subject of a best-selling book and the basis for a major new feature film.

When self-confessed rock star failure Neil McCormick put pen to paper for his 2003 memoir Killing Bono, little did he realise how his tales of living in the U2 frontman’s shadow would click with fans of the Irish supergroup.

As a former schoolmate of Bono — real name Paul Hewson — McCormick was perhaps better poised to recount the trials and tribulations of the singer than many rock writers.

The pair grew up in a Dublin with a burgeoning late-70s punk scene, but while Bono went on to attain rock god status, McCormick found his efforts in bands such as Frankie Corpse and the Undertakers, and Yeah! Yeah! were to come to naught.

“One reason that Bono made it is he was lucky,” says the chirpy and not-at-all-embittered-sounding Neil.

“There are three things you need to have a good chance of making it. One is an abundance of talent, and Bono certainly has that. He was a charismatic character in school and he's always been a hero to me.

“The next is luck, in meeting the right people, in being in the right band. The public chooses who it wants, you don't impose yourself on them, so you've got to be in the right place at the right time.

“And there's persistence — you stick with it until that combination of talent and luck pays off. I don't know where I went wrong; maybe it was the talent, certainly I didn't have the luck and 13 years demonstrates I had some persistence, so maybe if I had stuck it out for 14 years the world would finally have recognised my genius!”

Bono's legendary sense of drive and purpose — so evident in his campaigning work and his musical performances — was also a crucial factor, Neil says.

“It comes from not a very good place,” he adds.

“His mother died when he was 13 and it's amazing how many of our greatest stars have that kind of maternal or paternal loss in their background; it's quite shocking. For him, music was a way of filling himself up, and for me maybe it was just something I was doing.”

The title of the book itself may be stark in its message (and one might think the subject of a restraining order) but for Neil it was more about laying old ghosts to rest than hitting out at his more successful childhood friend.

“Bono came up with that title!” he laughs.

“It was called I Was Bono's Doppelganger, but when the book came out in the US they were perplexed by the word ‘doppelganger’. I had to come up with a new title. That was something Bono had suggested to me quite early on. I called him when I was writing the book. He read it and said “You should call it Killing Bono, like slaying your dragons”. He used to ring me up and leave messages on my phone saying “Neil, it's Bono, you have to kill me”.

“I was worried that someone might take me seriously, though!”

The singer's well-intentioned campaigns to save the world, including his very visible appearances in Northern Ireland in support of the peace process, have often made him an easy target for the sneering of others.

Yet Neil contends that the motivation of the man who wrote I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For is absolutely genuine and only exacerbated by his big personality.

“He's not down-to-earth, he's got a big head, and he's got a big heart and he's a big guy who is doing an amazing thing out there,” he says. “I find it quite sickening that people give him stick.

There's no rock star or celebrity in the world who gives more of himself to help other people, and he has made a profound difference.

“Millions of people are alive in the Third World because of the intervention of him and others who give a hell of a lot of time. We can argue about whether that's irritating or not, but nobody cares about ‘irritating’ when they're dying of hunger.”

Neil will be visiting Belfast this week for the first of the annual Northern Bank/Ulster Museum Lectures. Having seen the music industry both from within and without as a rock journalist, Neil's subject matter for his forthcoming lecture — Is There Too Much Music? — also promises plenty of insight into the industry.

“It's something I think about a lot,” he says. “Because from being a musician in a series of obscure and failed bands to somehow ending up in that musician's curse of becoming a rock critic instead, I have basically spent my entire life immersed in the world of music and have seen many changes over the decades.

“I was standing in Austin, Texas at a street intersection during the South By Southwest Festival, and there were gigs going on everywhere — in barber shops and on rooftops, thousands of bands playing in this city. I could hear the rumble of heavy metal from one side and country and western from another and hip-hop from another, all merging into this big mush.

“I thought that is a metaphor for the world we live in now, where there has never been more music available to hear.

“It made me wonder if there is in fact too much music. Humans evolved in a time of musical scarcity. If you wanted to hear music you had to make it yourself. Now you can't escape music and every 14-year-old will have heard more different types of music than his grandfather will ever have in his entire life.”

The increasing prevalence of manufactured pop shows like the X Factor is also detrimental to appreciation of quality music, Neil says. “I do believe that everybody has music in them, but that doesn't mean that everybody has a right to be famous,” he says.

“That is what the karaoke culture of Simon Cowell and co have exploited, that idea not that we're all musical, that we're all super-talented when we're not.

“So I don't really like the X Factor, because I find it exploitative. It feeds into the worst of human obsessions with music and not the best.

“It's all ego really. The best part of music is when the ego gets put away and releases the music.”

With music such a big part of his life, he wonders now if he has become trapped in what he calls “the obsession of my adolescence”, something which was no doubt given a surreal edge by meeting his ‘younger self’ during the filming of Killing Bono in Belfast just last month.

“I had to shoot a scene where I got a cameo as a rather sad old Irishman in an illegal strip club watching my younger self play on stage,” he recalls.

“The director had stationed a stripper right in front of me, so my screen moments will be me looking at some young girl's ass while my younger self plays in the background.

“I had a Spock-meets-Spock moment, a Star Trek paradox where I thought, ‘could I go up to my younger self, take him in hand and give him some advice and spare him the pain’?

“It's complicated because this isn't a novel, it's my life.

“When they make a biopic it's because the subject has done something great, like Gandhi or Nelson Mandela. But nobody knows who I am, or cares, so this is a story about a loser in rock ’n’ roll.

“On one hand I have the great victory of achieving the kind of fame I wanted when I was a kid, but on the other I am achieving it in the guise of a comedy loser played by an actor, so I'm not even going to be myself any more.

“Now I'm about to be subsumed in the shadow of a more handsome actor!”

Said actor is English pin-up Ben Barnes, star of Prince Caspian and Dorian Gray, and for whom Neil is fulsome in his praise.

“However, Neil found himself particularly moved by the portrayal of Bono by rising young west Belfast actor Martin McCann.

“He was amazing, he's going to be a revelation to people,” says Neil. “I was never as good looking as Ben Barnes, but I would see Martin out of the corner of my eye and think “There's Bono!”

“He’ll be walking towards you and he does something, a little jut of the chin and a movement of the shoulder and he just turns into Bono.

“It was very strange to see, and I had to stop myself from talking to him as if he was Bono. But he didn't stay in character.

“When the cameras weren't rolling he'd approach you like a good Northern Irishman.

“I said to Bono that the actor was doing a spookily good job and he said to me — “Just as long as he's tall!’.”

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Happy 50th Birthday, Adam!

The best of the best for the bassist who has given us hundreds of hours of pleasure with his emotional, grounding, all- emcompassing sound.

His words depict him as a great man...

"As for the good parts, we've got great fans. They follow us through all sorts of changes, and in many ways they encourage us to continue pursuing music that excites us. But the best thing really is that I get to hang out with three friends and musicians. And if I get stuck, in whatever way, I've got three guys who are willing and able to help. That's a great thing." -- Adam, on the best thing about being in U2, in an interview in 2000 for Bass Player Magazine.

More about his playing, here

A post I really enjoy reading "50 Things to Love About Adam Clayton on His 50th Birthday" in @U2

For 5o years more! Cheers, Mr Clayton!

In the cool of the night in Dakar

A fresh breeze blows over the Dakar home of Senegalese artist Baaba Maal. On Tuesday evening the singer of U2 was the main guest .This was a special occasion for him to see the work of artists who have a long and rich artistic tradition.

"Music is everywhere in the air here and, if you are looking, it won’t take long to hear it. Once we landed I got in touch with Baaba Maal, who lives part-time in Dakar and is easily one of the most accomplished and beautiful singers in all of Africa. His 1982 classic acoustic record, with his collaborator, Mansour Seck, called “D’jam Leeli” (check it out on iTunes….I swear, it’s the “Kind of Blue” of African music). It was my real introduction to African music years ago. What a sound it is. Lo and behold, it turns out he’s in town and happy to hear from us. In fact he invites us all over to his home after dinner where he promises to “put a few musicians together up on the roof” after dinner. Typical African hospitality." (from ONE blog "From a rooftop in Dakar")

Bono said "I´m here to listen and learn from musicians who pass in all its authenticity the soul of African culture. I think we can draw a lesson from contact with each other..."

"He (Baaba Maal) was very happy to see Bono, in particular, as they had recently played a show together in London. Up we went to the roof. Pillows and rugs and candles were strewn all over the floor, the African sky was bright with stars, and we settled in to what became an amazing impromptu show. Players moved in and out. There was a huge kora, a 26 string instrument, a ngoni, a small 3 string guitar-contraption, and some African drums and guitars. It was a perfect introduction to Africa for my fellow travelers and a perfect antidote for jet lag. The yawning stopped, time was forgotten, the vibe was perfect. No one would have wanted to be anywhere else. The music gradually took off and built … was hard to tell when it actually started….first some tuning, then some casual vocals by a woman who was sitting, then another woman came out from the shadows. They were singing an old Fulani song about love and longing. Ten minutes later, from the other side of the roof, Baaba Maal, who had been sitting and talking to us, stood up and suddenly began to answer the women, in a call and response mode. Pretty startling., like an opera almost.. Baaba then gave a very poetic welcome to us all, to the good work of ONE, and reminded us of the responsibility of artists and activists to hold leaders to account and remind them of what justice is really about."(from ONE blog "From a rooftop in Dakar")

source: /

The American Ireland Fund

The Tent at Lincoln Center
Damrosch Park, West 62nd Street, New York City

ecial Guest - Bono
May 6, 2010
7 pm Reception
| 8 pm Dinner & Award Presentation
Dancing & Irish Coffee Bar | Black Tie

U2 & The American Ireland Fund Partner To Support Music Education

The American Ireland Fund is pleased to welcome Bono as the special guest at the 35th Anniversary Dinner Gala at the Tent at Lincoln Center.

The Ireland Funds and U2 have joined forces to bring musical training to Ireland’s children.
This is a $10 million project to which U2 have committed $7 million.

Although music is offered as a core subject in Irish schools, the opportunities for children to learn to play a musical instrument are very limited, and the availability of instrumental tuition is among the poorest in the developed world. This project, which has the endorsement of the Irish Government, will set out to change this, by making affordable music lessons available in urban and rural centers across the entire country. At the Gala, you will be joining them and the Fund in backing this remarkable initiative and giving children across Ireland a chance to learn, love and benefit from music-making.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Bono in Ghana

Bono is in Ghana participating in the campaign United Against Malaria, an asociation of football players, NGOs, governments, ordinary people that have joined to fight against malaria before the World Cup 2010 in Southafrica.

One is part of the campaign and Bono is in Ghana joining efforts to support it.

If you play "World Cup Soccer Challenge: Kick Malaria" in Facebook for every people that play Sumitomo Chemical will donate a life-saver mosquito net.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

AWF Launching Eighth Annual Build a Well for Bono's Birthday Fundraiser March 22

To honor Bono's 50th birthday, the African Well Fund is aiming to raise $50,000 to fund water and sanitation projects in sub-Saharan Africa during a 50-day period beginning on World Water Day, March 22nd, and ending on Bono's birthday, May 10th.

To achieve this goal, AWF will be raising money in a variety of ways, including accepting donations through, selling specially designed T-shirts and merchandise through Zazzle, auctioning tickets to North American U2 360� Tour concert dates, and auctioning U2 concert photos. Stay tuned to the AWF homepage, Facebook and Twitter for updates on the Build a Well for Bono's Birthday fundraiser.

As in years past, all donors will be invited to leave their birthday wishes on a card that will be sent to Principle Management.

If you have a fundraising idea or would like to volunteer to help AWF achieve this $50,000 goal for Bono's 50th birthday, e-mail

Since 2003, U2 fans have donated more than $170,000 to fund Build a Well for Bono's Birthday projects in Angola, Ethiopia, Liberia, Uganda and Zimbabwe that have benefited more than 28,000 people.

Edge´s Angel

Edge´s angel

Angels appeared in Victoria Square yesterday as Dublin artist Nollaig Fahy brought his ‘Angels: Beacons of Hope’ exhibition to Belfast.

The project features 41 of the 8ft tall angels, each one featuring a unique design created by a host of celebrities.

Contributors include Holywood actress Uma Thurman, Director Neil Jordan, Ryder Cup golfer Padraig Harrington, Ireland rugby star Brian O'Driscoll and The Edge from U2.

When the exhibition finishes touring Ireland, the artwork angels will be auctioned off in aid of charities.
To see all the angels in the exhibition, click here.

For more information visit

Artist Nollaig Fahy

Monday, March 8, 2010

International Women´s Day

International Women's Day (IWD) is marked on the 8th of March every year. It is a major day of global celebration of women. In different regions the focus of the celebrations ranges from general celebration of respect, appreciation and love towards women to a celebration for women's economic, political and social achievements.
The first IWD was observed on 28 February 1909 in the United States following a declaration by the Socialist Party of America. Among other relevant historic events, it came to commemorate the 1911 Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire. The idea of having an international women's day was first put forward at the turn of the 20th century amid rapid world industrialization and economic expansion that led to protests over working conditions.
On occasion of 2010 International Women's Day the International Committee of the Red Cross is drawing attention to the hardship displaced women endure. The displacement of populations is one of the gravest consequences of today's armed conflicts. It affects women in a host of ways. Women displaced by armed conflict – often living alone with their children – are frequently exposed to sexual violence, discrimination and intimidation. Many face poverty and social exclusion as well. International humanitarian law therefore includes specific provisions protecting women, for example when they are pregnant or as mothers of young children.

If we are talking about women who support, influence and care we can´t forget the women behind U2:Ali Hewson, Anne Acheson and Morleigh Steinberg-Evans .
Apart from being "U2´s wives", muses and inspiration, helpers and companions in life, they stand out on their own.

Ali Hewson
rappelling down Ireland's tallest building raise funds for Chernobyl Children's Project International's Homes of Hope program in 2009

Ali Hewson, Bono´s wife, is a recognized activist.She received a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and Political Science from University College Dublin (UCD) in 1989, shortly after giving birth to her first daughter, Jordan. She is a patron of Chernobyl Children's Project International, an organization accredited by the United Nations that works with children, families and communities who continue to be affected by the Chernobyl nuclear disaster of 1986.[She participated in Greenpeace protests against the Sellafield reprocessing plant and narrated Black Wind White Land, an Irish film which highlighted the plight of victims of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster. She also participated in the film "Chernobyl Heart" with Adi Roche.
In addition to her own work, she has travelled and appeared with Bono extensively when participating in activist events such as campaigning against third world poverty. She and Bono founded the socially concious clothes company "EDUN".

Morleigh Steinberg-Evans

Morleigh , an American coreographer , dancer, filmmaker and lighting designer, met Edge when she was one of the belly dancers in the Zoo TV tour. Mother of two, she´s often seen accompanying her husband to events and parties, described as "a dark- eyed beauty", she has helped mould the scene of Dublin´s modern contemporary dancing.

Anne Acheson

Anne Acheson, Larry´s partner for almost 30 years, is a fine, beautiful lady with a very low profile. They met in their first year at Mount Temple School and seemed not to have separated since that moment.Mother of three children, she and Larry had been relatively successful in keeping their family life private. A great companion, she´s seen with Larry in important events, though as Larry has said "she has her own occupations".

U2 has always been surrounded by women, esp. in Principle Management ,where a great percetange of the staff are women. As Bono would sing "women are the future."

Not to forget the women who are in less advantageous position that us, ONE has launched a new campaign called Women ONE2ONE, the first step is to start an awareness campaign to end mother to child transmission of HIV.The group that can make this happen is The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria – who will be meeting with their key donors next week. Please join me in encouraging Global Fund Director Michel Kazatchkine and Global Fund donors to support efforts to end mother to child transmission of HIV as a priority intervention to stop the spread of the disease:

Happy International Women´s Day!!!
A Day for most of us to celebrate, why not signing ONE´s petition?

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Jared Leto would love to work with U2

Singer and actor Jared Leto has said that he would love to collaborate with U2.

Speaking to RTÉ.ie, the 30 Seconds to Mars frontman said: "Yeah, I'd love to do something with U2."

"To do a song with Bono would be great."

LM: Who would you say are your biggest musical influences down through the years?
Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, The Cure.

LM: Seeing as you're over in Dublin, I know you mentioned U2 earlier but are there any other Irish artists that you're a fan of?
Damien Rice, yeah, I like him a lot.

I wonder what Bono would think about it...

More on the article ,here.

Friday, March 5, 2010

U2 with no Echo

OK, no Grammys ,no Meteors and now no Echo Awards. U2 was nominated in the Best International Band pop/rock and the award went to Depeche Mode.

Will NLOTH be the most underrated U2 album? And the 360° Tour?

Maybe it´s what they say.... lucky in (cards)awards, unlucky in love? And as far as I am concerned U2 are doing fine in the love scene...Especially the unconditional love of their fans...

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Edge in Art Exhibition

Of the dozens of art world events happening as part of Armory Arts Week in New York right now, one of the most buzzed about was last night’s New Museum’s opening of a controversial show that features highlights from the personal collection of Greek billionaire Dakis Joannou, curated by artist Jeff Koons. “Skin Fruit: Selections from the Dakis Joannou Collection” marks the first time Koons has taken on the role of curator.

The exhibition features more than 100 works by Koons and other artists including Kiki Smith, Matthew Barney and Charles Ray. The show is still stirring up debate in the art world since Joannou is also a longtime trustee of the museum. Detractors argue that the show is a conflict of interest for the non-profit institution.

U2’s the Edge, in his telltale black beanie and a plaid shirt, seemed to offer the most distraction from the artwork for star-struck onlookers. “He’s still so cute after all these years!” said one young female gallery wanderer, within earshot of the musician. Standing near a tall rock-like sculpture by artist Dan Colen, decorated with graffiti-style writing and wads of chewed gum, the Edge, who’s real name is David Evans, told us that he was impressed by the size of Jaonnou’s collection. “It’s incredible to see it all in one exhibition,” he said. Though he wouldn’t call himself a major collector of art, Evans told us he does own works by Jean Michel Basquiat and Damien Hirst, whom he calls a friend.

source:The Wall Street Journal //

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Bono Collaborates with Angelique Kidjo in her New Album

Born in Benin (West Africa), Angelique Kidjo is a Grammy award-winning music recording artist deemed "Africa's premier diva" by Time Magazine. Kidjo's internationally acclaimed repertoire includes collaborations with various recording artists such as Bono, Carlos Santana, Peter Gabriel, Alicia Keys, Josh Groban, Branford Marsalis, Joss Stone, and many more. Known for her dynamic and uplifting music, she has translated her distinctive work in the arts to that of philanthropy; by promoting education for girls in Africa through her foundation, Batonga and as a UNICEF Goodwill ambassador Kidjo travels the world to inspire and empower.

Bono joins Angelique Kidjo and John Legend on a new single of Curtis Mayfield’s “Move on Up” for Kidjo’s new album Oyo, to be released April 6.
Listen to the song here:

Monday, March 1, 2010

Chile's children reeling after massive quake - Your help needed today

Save the Children is readying to send its emergency assessment team to Chile, site of a massive 8.8-magnitude earthquake early this morning.

The quake struck near Chile's second-largest city, Concepción, and has caused extensive damage. The capital Santiago, about 200 miles north of the epicentre, was also badly hit. Powerful aftershocks continue.

The president has declared an "area of ecocatastrophe."

"Any disaster increases the vulnerability of children. And we know from experience that an earthquake of this enormity — with widespread destruction of homes, schools, infrastructure and piece of mind — will put thousands of children at risk," said Charles MacCormack, Save the Children's president and CEO. "It is critical to reach affected children and families now in the early hours and meet their immediate survival needs. At the same time, we must also ensure that children, because they are at greater risk, are protected and nurtured as their country begins the difficult relief and recovery process."

What You Can Do

You can help Save the Children respond to emergencies around the world that put at risk the survival, protection, and well-being of significant numbers of children. By contributing to our Children's Emergency Fund, you enable us to prepare and respond immediately to children and families who urgently need our help when disasters strike.

Donate to the Children's Emergency Fund

Save the Children also is conducting a major relief and recovery effort in Haiti, which was struck more than six weeks ago. The agency has reached more than 500,000 people with lifesaving food, clean water, shelter, and health and nutrition programs.

Thank you on behalf of the children,