February 2006 Archives

Bono Rocks Brazil's Carnival

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RIO DE JANEIRO, Brazil - Thousands of Brazilians took a break from samba to rock with U2 frontman Bono during Carnival celebrations in the northeastern city of Salvador.

Bono performed an impromptu duet of "Vertigo" with Brazilian popular singer Ivete Sangalo as Carnival got underway in Salvador on Thursday, a day earlier than in Rio de Janeiro.

While the highlight of Brazil's carnival celebrations is Rio's annual samba parade on Sunday and Monday nights, many people prefer Salvador's carnival, where giant sound trucks with bands on top jam the city's streets night and day.

The U2 singer is attending Salvador's Carnival as a guest of Culture Minister and pop star Gilberto Gil. The O Globo newspaper reported Friday that music producer Quincy Jones was also attending Carnival as a guest of Gil.

Bono sang the duet from Gil's private box that faces the avenue as Sangalo and her band performed from atop a sound truck.

U2 played two sold-out concerts in Sao Paulo's Morumbi soccer stadium Monday and Tuesday nights.

U2 back in Mexico after bodyguard beating

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MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - Irish rockers U2 played to 90,000 Mexican fans at one of the world's most famous football stadiums on Wednesday on their first tour here since a rumpus eight years ago over the beating of one of their bodyguards.

With a red, green and white Mexican flag wrapped around his leather jacket, lead singer Bono greeted an ecstatic crowd in Spanish before kicking off the concert with the group's single "City of Blinding Lights."

Like fans across the world, Mexicans held up cell phones to share the concert with friends and relatives.

Thousands of people had lined up outside the capital Mexico City's Azteca Stadium, the only venue to have hosted the football World Cup final twice, before the concert.

U2's last tour of Mexico, in 1998, ended badly when a security guard working with the band was beaten in an scuffle with the entourage of the son of then-President Ernesto Zedillo. The bodyguard ended up in the hospital.

"I don't know if they're here for the money or if they have forgiven us but the most important thing is that they are here. It doesn't matter why," said Fernando Sanchez, 40, outside the stadium.

While Zedillo met the band in his residence and reportedly apologised, and although U2 frontman Bono says he held no grudge against the country, Mexico was noticeably absent from the band's North American tour in 2001.

U2 Plus Five Is No. 1

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Top Noms Kanye West, Mariah Carey Carry Home Three Trophies Each

By J. Freedom du Lac, Washington Post Staff Writer

LOS ANGELES, Feb. 8

Neither time nor Time magazine covers can slow down U2. The Irish rock band with the crusading lead singer has defied the odds by releasing relevant albums for a quarter-century. Wednesday night the music industry saluted the band accordingly by awarding U2 with the album of the year Grammy for the soulful song cycle "How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb."

The quartet won five Grammys in all -- its biggest-ever jackpot -- including best song ("Sometimes You Can't Make It On Your Own") and best rock album. Noting that there might be some concern his head would swell after all the honors, Bono, U2's notoriously self-assured singer, said: "It's too late!"

But better "Late" than never? Not quite. The acclaimed rapper Kanye West was denied a bid for the music industry's top honor for the second consecutive year as his superlative "Late Registration" met the same fate as 2004's "College Dropout." Nominated for eight awards, West was shut out in the major categories, including record and song of the year, for "Gold Digger." But he still took home three statuettes: best rap solo performance ("Gold Digger"), best rap song ("Diamonds From Sierra Leone") and best rap album ("Late Registration").

The Edge and U2 Offer Aid to New Orleans

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By SOLVEJ SCHOU, Associated Press Writer

LOS ANGELES - With a long-held affection for New Orleans, a city he calls "very unique and very special," U2 rocker The Edge felt compelled to try to help it recover from Hurricane Katrina. The result: Music Rising, an organization that provides instruments to musicians blasted by the storm.

The city especially took hold of his heart in 2001 after he and the band, while playing there, suffered a tragedy back home. A storage area in Dublin where they kept a lot of instruments was wiped out in a flood.

"Luckily," he recalls, "my main guitars were with us in New Orleans ... the Gibson Explorer that I've had since I was 17-years-old, and the amplifier I've used on every album for every show since we got a record deal."

Four years later, after Katrina blew through New Orleans, the memory of that good fortune led him to create Music Rising, along with Gibson Guitar, the Guitar Center Music Education Foundation and the MusicCares Foundation.

For The Edge, aka David Evans, that relief work topped off a packed year of touring, family trauma and five Grammy nominations for U2's "How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb." The Grammys will be handed out Wednesday.

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