U2 Joshua Tree album added to US archive

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U2's 1987 disc The Joshua Tree is among 25 new additions to the US Library of Congress's National Recording Registry.

BBC News

The Irish band's fifth studio album spawned such hits as With or Without You and Where the Streets Have No Name.

The original cast recording of Stephen Sondheim's 1979 musical Sweeney Todd and Isaac Hayes' Theme from Shaft have also been added to the archive.

Established in 2000, the registry contains recordings deemed important enough to be preserved for posterity.

Each year, 25 recordings that are at least 10 years old are added to the registry, which now includes 400 deemed to be "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant".

The oldest of this year's additions is The Laughing Song, a track by George Washington Johnson - the first African-American to make commercial records - that dates from around 1896.

The most recent, Jeff Buckley's version of Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah, was recorded in 1994.

U2 album still 'planned for this year'

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Amid rumours that the band have halted work on the new album, a spokesperson has confirmed that U2 are on schedule for the 2014 follow up to No Line on the Horizon

Sean Michaels, The Guardian

Despite fresh claims that U2 have pushed their new record and world tour back to 2015, a spokesperson for the band has confirmed that their 13th album is still on course for this year.

The band, who are nearing completion of a record that was expected this summer, had been rumoured to halt plans on the new release and instead book studio sessions with Adele writer/producers Paul Epworth and Ryan Tedder. While the switch in producer from long-term collaborator Steve Lillywhite is yet to be addressed, a spokesperson for the band has dispelled claims that the album will be delayed until 2015: "U2's album is planned for this year, is still on track and touring plans haven't been confirmed yet," they told the Guardian.

By Andrew Hampp and Shirley Halperin

Billboard

Fresh off the Oscars, the band quietly delays its fall tour and album, while inviting Ryan Tedder and Paul Epworth into the studio

The media blitz U2 has enjoyed during the first two months of 2014 has been virtually unrivaled - unless you're maybe Pharrell Williams and his Vivienne Westwood hat. Since mid-January, the band has won a Golden Globe; performed at the premiere of "The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon" and the March 2 Academy Awards; appeared on the cover of The Hollywood Reporter; and starred in a Super Bowl commercial funded by Bank of America and (RED) that debuted the track "Invisible."

Such momentum certainly signaled a proper return to music and touring was in the cards for U2 in 2014. The group had been diligently working with producer Danger Mouse (aka Brian Burton) on an album still described as "unfinished" in mid-February to The Hollywood Reporter. Billboard has confirmed with multiple sources, however, that the album has now been pushed back until 2015, with the band recently scheduling additional sessions with producers Ryan Tedder and Paul Epworth. (Danger Mouse remains onboard as the project's central producer.) "It seems to be taking longer for them to finish an album as they get older, but the great thing about U2 is that the whole of a record is always better than the sum of its parts," says a source close to the project. "That magic that the band always seems to capture ... they have yet to capture it."

U2 performed a soulful rendition of "Ordinary Love" at the 86th Academy Awards at the Dolby Theater in Los Angeles, California. The Hollywood audience gave the band a standing ovation as the song came to a close. Unfortunately, U2 did not win for "best original song", as that award went to "Let it Go" from the Disney film "Frozen". In 2003, U2 was nominated for "The Hands that Built America", an original song from Martin Scorcese's "Gangs of New York", and they also lost. Also, Benedict Cumberbatch executed a fantastic "photo bomb" when the band members of U2, accompanied by their wives and girlfriends, were posing in front of the camera on the red carpet.

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Watch U2 on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon

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U2 performed 2 songs on the debut of Jimmy Fallon's The Tonight Show on February 17, 2014. The first song was Invisible, taped on the rooftop of NBC's 30 Rock headquarters (Top of the Rock) in Manhattan for a small group of fans. The second song, Ordinary Love, was performed in the studio following a brief discussion with all 4 members of the band. Please check out the video clips below.

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By Hal Espen, Billboard

And the new album "won't be ready till it's ready," Bono says. "We know we have to spend a couple of years taking these songs around the world, so they'd better be good"

Just after Finnegan's pub opens at noon on a blustery, rainy, intermittently sunny winter day in Dalkey, a seaside suburb south of Dublin, Bono slides in the door and settles into a corner booth with his back to the wall and a wide-angle view of the establishment, like a wary gunfighter who wants to see what's coming. In a hoarse whisper, he orders tea and a plate of smoked salmon. His unimmaculate red-tinged quiff and tired eyes seem to be telling me this is a man who recently rolled out of bed.

The 53-year-old lead singer of the perennially biggest rock band in the world is quick-witted and preternaturally eloquent, but he also is one of the most interviewed humans on the planet, and he has a stash of well-rehearsed riffs that, understandably, tend to play on repeat. Once his throat is soothed by the tea and he's fully awake, however, I'm pleased to discover that the man loves to talk movies and has fresh things to say about them, ranging from Scorsese and Hitchcock to Wenders and Tarantino.

U2-Invisible1.jpg

New track is available for free download for 24 hours only, with benefits going to (RED).

By James Montgomery, MTV.com

U2 certainly aren't strangers to the Super Bowl -- their 2002 halftime performance remains one of the greatest of all time -- so Sunday's Big Game (and the record-breaking audience it will presumably attract) was the perfect place to launch their latest single, "Invisible."

Of course, given just about everything involving the iconic Irish quartet, this was so much more than a mere premiere: As soon as it debuted, "Invisible" was made available for free through iTunes, with Bank of America donating $1 for each download to Bono's (RED) charity, which fights AIDS, Malaria and Tuberculosis worldwide.

U23rdSeanPennFriendsHELPHAITIHOMEGalaMontageBeverlyHills1-11-2014BeverlyHillsCA39.jpg

U2 at the Help Haiti Benefit on January 11, 2014
© Jonathan Leibson/Getty Images for J/P Haitian
Relief Organization

Band will premiere the song in partnership with Bank of America and (RED) charity

By Jason Newman, Rolling Stone

One week after announcing the release of new song "Invisible" during Sunday's Super Bowl, U2 opened up about the song, the accompanying commercial for Bank of America and the band's partnership with non-profit organization (RED).

According to USA Today, the band will perform the track during a Bank of America ad, which will double as the company's partnership launch with (RED). The band remained guarded on details of the commercial, though Bono said it has morphed from the original idea. "One plan was for us to go knocking on doors in the middle of America, thanking people for saving lives," said Bono. "But a couple of band members thought that might seem self-aggrandizing."

U2, Alex Ebert Win Big at Golden Globes

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By Phil Gallo, Billboard, Los Angeles

U2 and Alex Ebert of Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeroes took home the music awards at the 71st annual Golden Globes Sunday night, while HBO's film on Liberace continued to add trophies to its mantle.

U2's "Ordinary Love" from "Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom" received the Best Original Song trophy, besting recordings from Coldplay, Taylor Swift and others. The band had won once before, in 2003 for "The Hands That Built America," from Martin Scorsese's "Gangs Of New York."

U2 guitarist The Edge said the band started working for Nelson Mandela and the anti-Apartheid movement when they were teenagers in the late 1970s. "It has taken 35 years to write this song," he said.

Dave Urbanski, The Blaze

For the last several Christmas Eves, U2′s Bono has appeared on the streets of Dublin to "busk" (i.e., sing/perform in exchange for donations) on behalf of a charity that helps the homeless.

This Christmas Eve was no different, as a wild crowd gathered around Bono and Irish songwriter Glen Hansard -- who plays for The Frames and The Swell Season and starred in the 2007 film "Once," winning an Oscar for Best Original Song ("Falling Slowly") -- while the pair prepared to sing and play without amplification.

No worries. The rowdy group erupted, drowning out Bono's voice on the chorus to "Merry Xmas Everybody," a 1973 song by the English group Slade. The mood was electric.

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