March 2010 Archives

By Dara Kelly, Staff Writer

Bono, the Irish rock star, is being hailed as "the worst investor in America" as his five person investment team Elevation Partners reels from a series of unprofitable investments. It's believed that the rocker has lost millions by investing with Elevation, although a precise figure has yet to be released. What's certain is that the U2 front man has put significant money into Elevation, which investment trade papers are calling arguably the worst run institutional fund of any size in the United States.

Bono is listed as one of the five members of the firm's investment team, and their fund claims that its "mission is to help media and entertainment businesses develop and market great content." But in the process it has made an unprecedented string of disastrous investments which, observers say, even bad luck could not explain. The most well-known of the Elevation investments is in Palm, which made an unsuccessful stab at the smartphone business dominated by Apple's iPhone, and handsets powered by the Google mobile operating system known as Android. Investors had hoped that Palm's new line of Pre handsets would allow the company to be a modest competitor in the smart phone industry but instead it has spent massive amounts for very slim returns and remains in trouble as it tries to reach even fairly modest sales goals.

Los Angeles Times

This just in from U2 headquarters: The Irish band will release a DVD of last year's massive Rose Bowl concert sometime in 2010, according to U2's website. Details remain foggy, but apparently they want the info out immediately, before they finalize the decisions: "The band are still working on the content of the DVD," reads a note on their site, before asking fans to register to get the latest updates.

The news isn't a big surprise, considering the band partnered with YouTube to stream the concert live.

Do you need the DVD? Times pop critic Ann Powers, in her review of the show, suggests maybe yes:

by John D. Luerssen, Spinner

It was a beautiful day for trophy maker Stuart Allcock when he got a call recently from his favorite band looking for help. One of the two Grammy Awards that U2 were awarded for 'The Joshua Tree' had been dropped and wound up in three pieces.

Allcock -- a big fan who caught his first U2 show during that album's campaign back in 1987 and runs Alpha Trophies -- told the Daily Telegraph that although working on the iron statue was stressful and "complex," he was stoked that U2's management asked him to fix the prize. The gramophone had to be welded back on and other parts had to be glued together and re-sprayed.

As for the call from the band's camp, at first Allcock, of Taunton in Somerset, UK, thought his friends were pulling a gag. "I thought it might be a joke and said, 'Is this Bono?'" he said, adding. "If it wasn't a U2 Grammy, I wouldn't pay a fiver. But it's priceless."

Rolling Stone

The delayed Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark Broadway show featuring music by U2's Bono and the Edge will have to find a new Mary Jane. Producers have confirmed that Evan Rachel Wood, the actress originally cast in the role of Peter Parker's love interest, has left the musical, Variety reports. Wood exited the production due to a "scheduling conflict"; financial troubles pushed Turn Off the Dark's opening well beyond its original February 25th preview premiere date. Variety writes that Spider-Man will likely begin its preview run in late summer and open around Halloween, though those dates remain unconfirmed by the show's production team.

"She's the greatest actor of her generation, she's the one to watch," Bono said of Wood after her casting was announced. "She happens to sing like a bird, it's like a true voice. She's a very pure spirit and a very bright mind and she brings the part of MJ to life, really."

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."

He also spoke about working with Kanye West recently, saying: "It was great."

"He was fun, easy, professional, creative and I think he did a great job on the song [Hurricane]."

© RTÉ 2010

By Candace Jackson, The Wall Street Journal

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.

At last night's opening party Koons, wearing a crisp black suit, wandered the galleries with his daughter. Speakeasy caught up with him on the fourth floor of the museum, which featured an eclectic mix of works including brown gouache paintings by Kara Walker and a sparkling sculpture called "Super Sister" by Liza Lou of an oversized bejeweled woman with an afro wearing short-shorts, platform red heels. "Skin Fruit: Selections from the Dakis Joannou Collection" marks the first time Koons has taken on the role of curator.

"I think I ended up dealing mostly with the body, inside and out," Koons said of his approach. But as for making a career out of putting together art exhibits in the future, Koons says his plan now is to "to focus on my own work."

A Song Called "Bad".

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Sorry it's been awhile since I've written. Various surgeries and musical artists have had me busy over the past few months (Blur, anyone?). This is actually an entry I've written in my head about 50 times and I'm finally sitting down to commit it to paper...or screen, if you wanna get technical.

Belfast Telegraph

U2's global 360-degree tour is generating enough cash to make your head spin.

New figures show that Bono and the boys raked in more money than any other music act in the United States last year -- earning a staggering £71 million from touring, record sales and other royalties.

According to the music journal 'Billboard', U2's earnings - which were dominated by ticket receipts from their ground-breaking tour - were almost twice as much as the next biggest earner on the list, Bruce Springsteen.

He had to make do with £37 million last year, although he will not have to split it five ways as Bono, the Edge, Larry Mullen, Adam Clayton and Paul McGuinness will with the U2 earnings.

by Kate Harper, CHARTattack

You know that vault full of change Scrooge McDuck has in DuckTales? Well, U2 could build one of those right now because they're truly swimming in dough.

The Irish quartet have topped's list of the top money makers of 2009, raking in a total of $108,601,283 U.S. (about $114.3 million Canadian) last year.

Singer Bono, guitarist The Edge, bassist Adam Clayton and drummer Larry Mullen, Jr. might have spent $750,000 U.S. (about $789,000 Canadian) per show on their 360 Tour, but they sold more tickets than they ever have according to Their merchandise and website also helped them make even more money.

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