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'Ink, Icons, Identity' suggests rock band often provides messages for 'love, loss and life,' says exhibit curator

By David Crumpler, The Florida Times-Union/

The idea for the U2 Tattoo Project, which can be seen in exhibit form starting Monday at the University of North Florida's Gallery of Art, came together last year.

It was mid-May. Beth Nabi and her friend Chris LeClere were at the first of two concerts launching U2's Innocence + Experience Tour in Vancouver.

Nabi had encouraged LeClere to join her to experience the thrill of seeing the celebrated Irish rock band perform live.

He turned out to be the right choice for a traveling companion.

Nabi is an assistant professor of graphic design and digital media at UNF and a longtime U2 fan. LeClere is a photographer and visual anthropologist.

She had given presentations about the band's "visual identity" -- images associated with U2 such as the Joshua Tree, the photo of a disturbed looking Dublin boy on the cover of the "War" album and the "Zoo baby" drawing from the album "Zooropa."


by Melanie Finn, Showbiz Editor

As U2 frontman, Bono is well used to being hounded by fans.

But the Herald can reveal how he turned the tables in Dublin this week after getting his paws on a passer-by's two dogs for a Rolling Stone shoot.

Liberties native Ann Williams was left gobsmacked after running into the famous foursome doing photographs at the Guinness Storehouse for an upcoming shoot. But she had no idea that her two thoroughbred pooches - mother and son boxers named Holly and Rebel - would end up with starring roles in the session.

"I was bringing the two dogs for a walk on Monday evening and I couldn't believe it when I turned the corner and I saw the band standing there at the back of the Guinness Storehouse.


by Will Stabley, Stabley Times
(Originally posted March 1, 2013)

36.33088, -117.74527 marks the location of a dead tree and a metal suitcase. The inland California desert is sprinkled with countless Joshua Trees, but only one is singularly iconic. Made famous by U2 in 1987 in the photo sessions for the album of the same name, that one particular Joshua Tree has gone on to be immortalized in posters and banners for the past quarter century. U2 fans have pinned down its location over the years through trial and error, gradually determining that it's nowhere near Joshua Tree National Park, but instead hundreds of miles to the north, somewhere between Yosemite and Death Valley. It's located where the proverbial streets have no name, far enough out into the middle of nowhere that the only accurate way to convey its location is by the global coordinates above. So I head north out of Los Angeles into the desert the hopes of finding what I'm looking for.


Los Angeles Times

The U2 show at the Rose Bowl may have been billed as the concert of the century but this is also the "decade of the fanboy" and I couldn't help but notice some overlap between the massive music event and the universe we cover here at the Hero Complex.

I was only inside the venue for 10 minutes when I saw a familiar face in the churning crowd of the stadium's outer ring. I called out to J.J. Abrams and he smiled, waved and paused but really there was no way to stop and talk amid the crowd current. "See you inside," he said.

My son, Ben, who is 8, was attending his very first concert and he recognized Abrams but not as the creative brand behind "Lost," "Star Trek" and "Fringe": "Hey, he's the guy who played keyboards in that video 'Cool Guys Don't Look at Explosions,' right?" Um, wow, yeah, son, that is him.

We were lucky enough to get bracelets for the pre-show party at the Round Room, a swanky (but sweltering) VIP tent, and one of the first people we saw when we walked in was Ewan MacGregor, who was posing for pictures with some people. Ben was properly awed by the presence of Obi-Wan Kenobi and he was searching faces in the rest of the room in hopes, I suspect, that Chewbacca might be in some corner debating the merits of "Joshua Tree" with General Grievous.


By Beth Anderson, Republican Journal Guest Columnist

(Oct 8): Most would call it an obsession. There are, however, a few who would describe my apparent lunacy as well within the norm.

Regardless of the label, if you have the same goal as I, you will need to plan months in advance to get yourself a ticket, travel great distances, and spend at least 12 -- and in some cases upwards of 24 -- hours in line. You will need to go to such lengths if you want to see the Irish rock legends U2 close enough so that the only things between you and the band are a rail, a security guard and the stage itself.

Of course there are exceptions to the rule: those with inside connections, contest winners and, unfortunately, line cheaters, but almost all of the people I spent the third weekend in September with were just like me. Fans from all over the world who converged on Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Mass., to catch Sunday or Monday's performance and in many cases, both shows.

The first leg of U2 360 tour opened this summer in Barcelona and rocked the rest of Europe with a spectacular stage design that was paired with the band's latest album, "No Line on the Horizon."

Watch the video on this story

Carolyn MacKenzie & Ryan Cripps, Global News

An 8-year-old London boy had the experience of a lifetime Thursday night when U2's lead singer lifted him on stage at a sold-out concert at the Rogers Centre.

Thousands watched as Lucas Zara was hoisted into the waiting arms of Bono on a catwalk above him.

"This is like the greatest moment of my life," Lucas told Global News in an exclusive interview on Friday.

Lucas was on stage for the entirety of "City of Blinding Lights", a moment that was watched and recorded by thousands.

"We made eye contact and he gestured to put him up," said Russ Zara, Lucas' father.

Survivor credits U2 for healing

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By Joe Warmington, Sun Media

First came the plane crash.

Then the cancer.

So Angie Koliakos knows even being at the U2 concert last night is both a mystery and a miracle.

Angie knows Bono is not singing specifically about her, a 48-year-old Toronto woman, but she says as far as she is concerned, he is.

The legendary singer sings about war, struggle, love, forgiveness, faith and survival, and Angie knows about each and every one.

"Bono says we have one life, one love, you've got to do what you can," she said last night.

"U2 has been an inspiration to me as far back as I can remember, but most important it has helped me heal through the tragedies in my life."

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By Staff reporter, Derry Journal

A dedicated Derry U2 fan and first time author is using the Irish supergroup's 30 year career as a backdrop to his own life story.

Cathal McCarron said the love of the band began as a young boy in his Foyle Springs home and over the last 24 years the group has been one of the few constants in his life.

That relationship now serves as a backdrop to the young author's life story in " Me &U2, their music, my life."

"Outside of my family life and a few life long friends, my relationship with U2 is arguably the longest lasting relationship in my life. In that sense, much as the same way Nick Hornby does with Arsenal Football Club in Fever Pitch, it made sense shape the book around that relationship" he told the 'Journal'.

"This is the story of the many places where, the many times when, and the many ways how, U2 have inspired, entertained, influenced and enraged me: with their music, their lyrics, their concerts and their concepts."

Alma Catal, who attended U2's Sarajevo show in 1997 and lived through the war, talks about how that concert over a decade ago lives on.

Bono's Inspiration

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ROCK star Bono's life changed forever when he met passionate Australian nurse Sue Germein.

The U2 frontman has revealed that the Australian woman's heartfelt commitment to social justice inspired him to become a champion against global poverty and the spread of AIDS.

"She was the woman that got me fired up about these issues," said Bono.

"She had a huge impact on me. Her passion changed my life."

The social worker and one of the world's biggest rock stars met on a plane flight over Ethiopia in 1985.

Sue Germein, raised on a sheep farm, was working with a World Vision emergency medical team when asked to join an tour of the famine-ravished country with "an Irish couple".

"I had nothing else to do so I went along," Sue, now 51, said.

"Boarding the plane I met the couple. The man introduced himself as Bono and his wife as Ally.

"As we went along Bono began chatting away, telling me he was a singer with a band called U2 and that he had only recently been in Adelaide. I had no idea who they were.

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