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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.

U2 show at the Rose Bowl has a fanboy backbeat?

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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.

A fan reflects on 'U2phoria'

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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."

Derry author makes debut with U2

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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."

U2 Fan in Zagreb: 'The Music United Us'

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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.

Fans queue overnight to meet U2

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By Mark Savage, Entertainment reporter, BBC News

Hundreds of U2 fans have queued overnight to meet their rock heroes, who were in London to launch their official biography.

After braving a stormy night on the streets of central London, 100 fans managed to secure tickets for the event, joining 150 competition winners from the band's website.

"My boyfriend came down just after midday yesterday," said Sunny Kang, 26, from London. "I met him at six o'clock in the evening and took over and I've been here ever since.

"It was pretty rainy but there was a good group of us, and I managed to get about half an hour's kip which was more than anyone else got."

U2's appearance was only announced on Thursday, and many of the band's devotees dropped everything to dash to London.

The Irish group were due to arrive at book-sellers Waterstones at midday but, in keeping with time-honoured rock tradition, they kept fans waiting for another hour before making an appearance.

Undeterred, the crowd gave them a loud cheer as they emerged from an elevator surrounded by security guards.

Ramona Satar's Vancouver Experience

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U2 rocked my heart, mind and soul like only they could on April 28th and 29th at GM Place. And after 25 years of poignant albums and stellar concerts, it's hard to believe it was my first time seeing them.

I don't just like U2, I psychotically adore this band with every fiber of my very being. It wasn't always that way though. I've always liked them since the time my uncle put on their very first album back in 1980. I bought every album U2 ever put out and all of that, but the obsession didn't begin to manifest until their unprecedented 1987 release: The Joshua Tree.

Wondering why I hadn't ever seen them live until this past April? I chalk it up to Divine Intervention. Some mysterious force always prevented me from seeing U2. First is was my parents not willing to let a 13 year old run off to a rock concert in Vancouver. It was my parents again when they said they would only let me go if I found a "trustworthy" friend to drive down with... Of course no on fit the bill, and the one person who did refused to go because she feared U2 were becoming too secular and immoral (!). Next time around I simply couldn't afford to make the trip to Vancouver because I had just moved out on my own. The final failure was in 2001 when U2 were on their Elevation tour. Depeche Mode was touring the same year and I had to choose whether I went to see them or U2 because it all came down to available funds yet again. I chose Depeche Mode because I knew that U2 would be back again. What I didn't know was that I would be the one who might not be.

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