"It is still an extraordinary thing to behold the sound of a rock and roll band in full flight. Not just the sound of it when it gets airborne - but the deals that you make on the ground; the promises that your friendship will survive being broke [or] not being broke; the Eighties - and maybe 20 years later you will find yourselves at an award ceremony with people you started out with. Wow."
"Making records is like making hot dogs. You'll probably enjoy them more if you don't see how it's done."
"It's a gift much more than a craft in our case. This is a punk rock band, hearing mad tunes in their heads that are gospel and folk and psychedelic and hard rock. And we depend on what Quincy Jones said - we depend on God walking through the room, more than most. And God has walked through the room on our record and I want to give thanks. Amen."
"All celebrities tend to milk their celebrity when it suits them, but, when you're as blessed, privileged, and, let's be honest, over-rewarded, as I have been in my life, I think you have a responsibility to put something back."
"Perspective is the cure for depression."
"I find it amusing that people think I'm together [because] I'm the most untogether person I know. In the band, they just say, 'here comes chaos.' Oh, I want to be together - it's my ambition to one day get my own life in order and tie it up with string and be as organized as somebody like Adam....Clayton's unbelievable. Field Marshal Clayton!
For a guy who can stay out all night, if he needs to be up at 8am, he'll be there at 8am on the button."
"I do understand that singing about peace, love and understanding right now will lead to a certain f***-off factor."
"Being one can be great, but respecting differences can be greater."
"I have electrical storms of a different kind now."
"It's your future. The only limits are the limits of your imagination. Dream up the kind of world you want to live in - dream out loud. At high volume! That's what we do for a living. Lucky Bastards!"
"We got booed in Chicago, which I take as a compliment. I don't think we have an audience of lemmings."
"I come from the position that 50.000 people gathered might not be wrong. In fact, if they're gathered together at one of our gigs, I'm tempted to think they might be right!"
"Any kind of machismo disappears when you see what the mother of the child is capable of. For an unreconstructed male, it really threw
"Music is the language of the spirit anyway. Its first function is praise to creation -- praise to the beauty of the woman lying next to you, or the woman you would like to lie next to you."
"Songwriting still surprises me -- you think you're describing one thing, and it turns on its head." --on how Kite changed after his
"When those people get up at the Grammys and say, "I thank God," I always imagine God going, "Oh, don't -- please don't thank me for that one. Please, oh, that's an awful one! Don't thank me for that -- that's a piece of [crap]!" The most powerful idea that's entered the world in the last few thousand years -- the idea of grace--is the reason I would like to be a Christian. Though, as I said to [U2 guitarist] The Edge one day, I sometimes feel more like a fan, rather than actually in the band. I can't live up to it. But the reason I would like to is the idea of grace. It's really powerful."
"You think you're so tough/You think you've got the stuff/You're telling me and everyone you're hard enough/You don't have to put up a fight/You don't have to always be right/Let me take some of the punches for you tonight." --from "Sometime You Can't Make it on Your Own" a song he wrote for his father.
"There's a great freedom when you have your feet
in two so called mutually exclusive worlds:
The world of irony, and the world of soul,
The world of flesh, and the world of spirit,
The world of surface and the world of depth."
"For me, if you want to write the book, sing the song, paint the picture, make the film, you have to reach under your skin and pull open your ribcage."
"I met this guy once in a mental hospital I was visiting. He introduced himself as Jesus Christ. I just said, 'Haven't we met before?' He said nothing. I asked him why, if he was the son of God, was he in a mental hospital? He said, 'Because it's my 40 days and 40 nights in the wilderness.' At that point I just cracked up. I asked him when the end of the world was going to come. He said April 1. I thought, 'Brilliant, pencil it into the diary. The world will end on April Fool's Day. Perfect"
"There is a root arrogance in any writer; a hugely arrogant assumption that anyone is going to listen to them."
"I guess right down the hall from beatification comes crucifixion, so I better
"...he made me go into this room full of Bonos -- a horrifying thought."
"The strangest thing has happened. I really missed my dog. That's never happened to me before. You know, on a long tour you do hear people saying they miss their pets. I never have. But last night I started really missing my dog.
It's very odd, cause I don't have a dog."
"Innocence is much more powerful than experience."
"My own dad didn't encourage me much, maybe to save me from being disappointed. And my way of rebelling has been to prove I can go out and win the love of the whole world. But it's a funny need for compensation that makes you need fifty thousand screaming people telling you they love you in order for you to feel normal."
"You put on the leather pants and the pants start telling you what to do."
'I've learned, for instance, how to listen to Michael Jackson records, I've figured it out. I just pretend I can't speak English. And I am a huge fan as a result. I mean that."
"I fell in love with Ali the first time I saw her. Absolutely. And the last time."
"The truth is that you are many people at the same time and you don't have to choose. It's like Edge describes me - as a bunch of nice guys"
"U2 is an original species... there are colours and feelings and
emotional terrain that we occupy that is ours and ours alone."
BP: What's your favourite method of transportation?
BONO: An angel's back. No, make that blindfolded.
"There's a point where you find yourself tiptoeing as an artist,
and then you know that you're in the wrong place.
It's like you have a rule book, but you don't remember where you got it."
"I often wonder if religion is the enemy of God. It's almost like religion is what happens when the Spirit has left the building. God's Spirit moves through us and the world at a pace that can never be constricted by any one religious paradigm. I love that. You know, it says somewhere in the scriptures that the Spirit moves like a wind -- no one knows where it's come from or where it's going. The Spirit is described in the Holy Scriptures as much more anarchic than any established religion credits."
"It's not all of our beliefs and not everyone in the band believes in the same way. There are things I just don't want to talk about. I'll talk about them in music, the way I feel about things comes out on-stage. There are things that don't go well coming indirectly from other people."
Rock & roll is mutating into something else at the moment...
Images are everything, and we want to be there
when the sort of audiovisual-microchip-interactive music is born.
"I'm frightened, but I'm not cynical or pessimistic about the future
and a lot of that must come down to my beliefs. It is my belief in God that enables me to get up in the morning and face the world. I believe that there is a logic and a reason for everything. If I didn't believe that and thought that everything was simply down to chance, then I'd really be afraid. I wouldn't cross the road for fear of being run over."
"My position is that I write songs, I'm in a band and I just hope that when it's all over for U2, that in some way we made the light a bit brighter. Maybe just tear off a corner of the darkness."
"I think it's the spiritual strength that's essential to the band. People have got to find their own way. I'm not into standing up and saying, 'hey, you should be into God!' My own life is exhilirating through an experience I feel, and I feel there's no point in talking about something which should be there in your life anyway. You don't have to preach about it."
The interview hadn't even begun..... and suddenly we all noticed something very peculiar: Bono - is - taking - all - his - clothes - off. The white shirt went first, then his black suede boots, his socks, trousers, and briefs (black with white trim, possibly Calvin Klein, probably Marks & Spencer). "That's better," he sighed blissfully. "Now ask me a serious question -- if you dare." Excuse me but why have you taken your clothes off, Bono? "For the same reason," interjected the Edge, answering on Bono's behalf, "that he's the lead singer. Because he's a rampant sex god with a huge ego."
"And a small willy," added Adam.
"My earliest memory of Larry was when we were starting off. We were at our first rehearsal in his kitchen and all these girls kept climbing over the walls and looking in the window at Larry. Larry just shouted at them and told them to go away. And then turned the hose on them! Larry likes to play drums."
"Never trust a man who tells you it's from the heart, never trust a man smoking a cigar, never trust a cowboy or a man who wears shades..."
"I don't mean to sound arrogant but even at this stage, I do feel that we are meant to be one of the great groups. Theres a certain spark, a certain chemistry that was special about the Stones, the Who and the Beatles and I think it's also special about U2"
"As we were leaving stage, I said [to Bob Dylan], 'Those songs are gonna last forever, Bob.' And he said, 'Your songs are gonna last forever, too - the only thing is, no one's gonna be able to play them.' They're hard to figure out, you know?"
"The bass is the hippest instrument in rock 'n
roll, the drums are the most exciting. I want to play
the guitar very badly and I do play the guitar very badly."
"I will admit that we are attracted to issues that
unify people rather than divide them."
"Revolution starts at home, in your heart, in your refusal to compromise your beliefs and your values. I'm not interested in politics like people fighting back with sticks and stones, but in the politics of love. I think there is nothing more radical than two peoples loving each other, because it's so infrequent"
"I sometimes think it might have been a mistake - you picked the wrong guy! Look, I'm built more like a mechanic or something, a carpenter. I mean, take a look at these hands - these are the hands of a brick layer!"
"It would be wrong for me to say, "Yes, we can change the world with a song" -but every time I try writing, that's where I'm at. I'm not stupid. I'm aware of the futility of rock 'n' roll music. But I'm also aware of it's power."
"The human heart is greedy; it will use religion, color, or any other excuse to justify its greed. Blame the human heart."
"One must be political at times, but sometimes you have to look beyond that, to just the state of the human spirit."
" I've got a book....I've written poems but I don't
know if I'll publish them. If I do I'll call it 'FUCK OFF!! Volume 1'.
I get annoyed when people expect me to be a great all-arounder. "
"The right to be irresponsible and stupid is something I hold very dear. And luckily it is something I do well."
BP: Do you believe in flying saucers?
BONO: In my kitchen they'e an everyday thing.
BP: Have you ever seen one?
BONO: She's a very good shot.
"If i am close to the music, and you are close to the music,
then we are close to each other."
"Sometimes being a rock star is like going through a sex change.
A lot of people treat you like you're a girl, they stare at you and follow you down the street, 'till you don't know where to hide."
"We knew the tunes were there and we felt
there was a hunger again for something joyful, something
that lifts your spirits in a real way, and I think rock 'n' roll is best able to do that."
"The Holy Spirit is like a woman. Undependable. Joke! Joke!"
"Anger is simple. Any artist knows he can do it with a
black brush. That's what rock is at the moment. It's an
easy thing to do: painting in black. Joy is something else.
It's much harder to create because you are dealing with
something much deeper and much more emotional. It's a
connection with the audience that borders on faith,
believing in something together."
"People expect that because I am a believer that I somehow have all the answers. And I was saying that really I have more questions, as a result of being a believer, and the road I am going down is a road with many side roads, and you get lost along the way and I don't feel that Im a very good ad for God, y'know. If ever there was a sinner there is one here."
"I wake up with a melody in my head in the morning and I have to write it down. I don't have to write it down because I think we need another song for a record. I write it down because I'm excited by the idea of making music."