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Old 06-14-2005, 05:06 PM   #91
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Bono on Bono
REVIEWED BY CHRISTOPHER HART

BONO ON BONO: Conversations with Michka Assayas

Towards the end of these witty and entertaining conversations, Bono’s interlocutor, the French journalist Michka Assayas, hints that there will always be something enigmatic and mysterious about this “Bible-reading band man”. Wrong. Bono is about the least enigmatic person you could imagine: an extrovert, utopian,unreflective, candid, verbose, fidget-brained show-off. He has never had the enigmatic cool of one of his rock heroes. What you see is exactly what you get. Even while he irritates our consciences with Drop the Debt and Live 8, or just irritates us by publicly comparing Tony Blair and Gordon Brown to
John Lennon and Paul McCartney, there is no doubting that behind the perpetual shades there is fundamentally a good, plain man.

He is guilty of some preposterous Oirishry: how Bono can still dare to refer to the Irish as “the white niggers” beggars belief. Although he still has a house in Ireland he obviously spends a lot of time in New York or the south of France, where most of these interviews take place, praising his homeland to anyone who will listen. (Like the Irish boomerang: never comes back, just keeps singing about how much it wants to.) On the other hand, he is sharp on the hypocrisy of Irish Catholics over the Troubles: one moment looking slightly uncomfortable about the latest IRA atrocity in England, the next singing A Nation Once Again down the pub, hats being passed around, and everyone putting in for the Provos. “I hated that about us Irish, our duplicity.” He had the guts to stand up and say so, too, earning him the accolade of “little shit” from Gerry Adams, MP for Belfast West.

Bono hints darkly that he himself has “done a lot of stupid stuff” in the past, and without grace and forgiveness would be “in deep shit”. But these protestations remind you of nothing so much as St Augustine worrying in his Confessions that he suckled too greedily as an infant. Bono, like St Augustine, was never really a bad-ass mutha. He played in an international chess championship when he was 12 (“What a pain in the arse!”) and he thinks “ cigarette smoking is dumb”.

On his musical heroes — Dylan, Elvis, Johnny Cash and Prince (yes, Prince) — he is original and observant. One Bono mot on Elvis is downright brilliant. Rock’n’roll, he says, was born of gospel and the blues: “One hand on the positive terminal, one hand on the minus terminal. And Elvis’s dance was really electrocution.” Able to reconcile his religion with the music, he remains well aware that in the violence and raw sexuality of rock ’n’roll, “Demons can appear to be exorcised, but they’re not really, they’re usually being exercised.”

He may have a name like a dog-biscuit (although it’s an improvement on a previous moniker, Steinvic von Huyseman), but Bono is no daft, wide-eyed puppy. Cool and enigmatic he will never be, but his heart is warm, his mind is sharp, and his conversation is a rich, unstoppable noise.

(c) The Times 2005
I agree with this.
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Old 06-14-2005, 05:53 PM   #92
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Originally posted by beli


I agree with this.
And I completely don't. So, you wanna duke it out?


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Old 06-14-2005, 05:59 PM   #93
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And I completely don't. So, you wanna duke it out?


Okay

Or we could compromise and you can have Bono and I can have Adam.
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Old 06-14-2005, 06:18 PM   #94
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Okay

Or we could compromise and you can have Bono and I can have Adam.
Okalie-Dokalie. Shall you arrange that, or shall I?
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Old 06-14-2005, 06:30 PM   #95
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Okalie-Dokalie. Shall you arrange that, or shall I?
I already did. I'm in Europe right now. Aren't you? If youre not here, then who was that sheep I let in backstage?
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Old 06-14-2005, 06:36 PM   #96
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Well, I'm not sure. I guess I need to ruminate on that. Ha ha ha!
(Sorry for the pun.)
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Old 06-14-2005, 06:47 PM   #97
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Well, I'm not sure. I guess I need to ruminate on that. Ha ha ha!
(Sorry for the pun.)
Im easily amused this morning.
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Old 06-15-2005, 05:50 AM   #98
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Originally posted by beli


I agree with this.
Beli, would you care to elaborate more on your opinion of Bono?
I hope you don't mind my asking, i always enjoy your posts and am interested in what you have to say.
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Old 06-16-2005, 01:08 AM   #99
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No don't get her started, she'll never stop!


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Old 06-16-2005, 03:51 AM   #100
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Disclaimer: I have never met Bono so I'm basing my opinion solely on how he presents himself in the media.

Bono, I don't view as enigmatic at all. To me he reminds me of unschooled businessman. I don't mean that as an insult, quite the opposite in fact. There's two types of entrepreneurs. The ones that went to all the right schools and had many advantages and developed/continued an empire. Then there are people like Bono who watch closely, copy, extrapolate.

I believe Bono to be shrewd, quite the tactician. He has a reputation for being a bit of a goober at times but I believe that's just for issues he's not fussed about.

Bono has taken lyrics from other songwriters, poets, authors. Bono has taken his image from other rockstars. I also believe he has employed many people who are world class at what they do. He's hanging out with the smart kids as the expression goes.

I believe Bono continually works out what is the best thing to steal at the time and does so. Not that thats a bad thing. I just don't believe he is a reflective sort.

I think Bono is very clever, in a highly observant kind of way. He reminds me a lot of some mining magnates here in Perth. I think he was destined to turn a buck.

His work for Africa is indeed to be admired. Bono is rehashing things that others have said before, and said for many decades. But he is drawing attention to the issues and that is noble. Very, very, noble. I am a person who values honour and admire, deeply admire, Bonos stance on social justice issues.

In a nutshell. Tactician, yes. Enigmatic, no.

I don't want to say much more than this or I will be flamed by the Bono Brigade. lol.

PS U2 are my favourite band, by a long long shot. No other band even comes close to how much I admire U2.

peace
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Old 06-16-2005, 07:12 AM   #101
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Thanks, Beli.
It's quite funny how carefull you are with your wording. It shouldn't be such a big deal to comment on Bono in a less than admiring way-after all, he's human.
Noone will deny that he's a clever businessman.
In fact, i agree with what you wrote. Doesn't mean I think any less of him, personaly, i think edge has more integrity.
*runs and hides
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Old 06-16-2005, 01:04 PM   #102
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Hi Beli. Well, I agree with some of what you have said, but I don't think you really address the whole creative aspect of Bono's life. You say he "has taken lyrics from other songwriters, poets, authors". I can think of three or four examples of that, such as the Delmore Scwartz line from Acrobat, and the Charles Bukowski line from Dirty Day (both of which are acknowledged in the album notes, by the way). But this is a person who has written dozens and dozens of often deeply moving songs which he didn't "steal".
I cannot agree that someone as lacking in reflection as you theorize Bono to be would have such an obviously rich creative life. It just doesn't add up, and that's why I still think there's a puzzle about this man, an enigma if you will.
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Old 06-16-2005, 01:58 PM   #103
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Quote:
Originally posted by beli


I don't want to say much more than this or I will be flamed by the Bono Brigade. lol.

LOL, no fear of that. They're all to busy in PLEBA talking about his butt! (Meow.)
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Old 06-16-2005, 05:40 PM   #104
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Originally posted by the soul waits
Thanks, Beli.
It's quite funny how carefull you are with your wording. It shouldn't be such a big deal to comment on Bono in a less than admiring way-after all, he's human.
Noone will deny that he's a clever businessman.
In fact, i agree with what you wrote. Doesn't mean I think any less of him, personaly, i think edge has more integrity.
*runs and hides
My original post has a bit about perhaps, maybe, just maybe, The Edge writes the profound lyrics but I have absolutely no evidence to support this so I deleted it.

*runs out of the thread, screaming like a girl*
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Old 06-16-2005, 05:50 PM   #105
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Originally posted by biff
Hi Beli. Well, I agree with some of what you have said, but I don't think you really address the whole creative aspect of Bono's life. You say he "has taken lyrics from other songwriters, poets, authors". I can think of three or four examples of that, such as the Delmore Scwartz line from Acrobat, and the Charles Bukowski line from Dirty Day (both of which are acknowledged in the album notes, by the way). But this is a person who has written dozens and dozens of often deeply moving songs which he didn't "steal".

I cannot agree that someone as lacking in reflection as you theorize Bono to be would have such an obviously rich creative life. It just doesn't add up, and that's why I still think there's a puzzle about this man, an enigma if you will.
Biff, you are much morer the intellectual than moi. When I was refering to stolen lyrics I was thinking more of the Neil Diamond and John Lennon bits. lol.

I agree, U2 haven't stolen all of their lyrics. There are many unique lyrics ("heavy as a truck" )

I believe Bono is very good at setting the mood of the songs. I much prefer his "lyrics" on The Unforgettable Fire to recent lyrics. Bono is the master of atmospheric warbling.

As for Bonos creative life, a critic of Bonos paintings for the Peter and the Wolf project described Bonos work as having been painted the way a person thinks paintings should look. (or words to that effect). Which is basically what I'm saying about his lyrics. I believe Bono to be very observant and a great mimic.

Not that it matters what a shrimp, a sheep, and Bono think about Bono.
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