And Then We Were Ten

Ten years ago, you hadn’t heard of blogging. It was before weblogs were even called blogs, before permalinks and Adsense, before people who have never run a community started calling themselves ‘social media experts’.
Maybe you weren’t even online back then. But we were and we were blogging. U2 were in the studio recording ‘All that you can’t leave behind’. They’d set up a webcam sending out pictures every few minutes. They’d built in a delay, because god forbid we’d see anything untoward. We were a small group of fans from Holland, Australia, USA and Sweden who had first met each other on IRC and then met up ‘in real life’ on the road during the Popmart tour in 1997. We were online 24/7, grabbing pics from the webcam and archiving them. We’d done the same during ‘Pop’. Back then occasionally there’d be some kind of response from the studio on our comments. Little messages posted on cardboard cutouts. It’s too long ago to remember the details. But it was fun. It could have been the start of a beautiful band-fan relationshop online. But U2 never really did take to the internet like we – early adopters – hoped they would. was one of the first ever blogs, one of the first ever single subject blogs, one of the first ever team blogs. (Hi team! How are you all these days?) I’m proud of that. Ahead of the curve means you’ll suffer the dialectics of progress at some point. We did satire, we did proper reporting, we tried to filter fact from fiction, we strived to be anti-agenda, independent, secular, different. We loved Pop*.
We are past our prime, I’ll be the first to admit. I’ve been running this site mostly on my own these past couple of years. I’m always on the verge of kicking it in the head. I’m not the fan I used to be and there are many reasons I shouldn’t be doing this: Other sites are doing it so much better. I know too much, I know too little. I have other interests I should focus on. Still, I can’t let it go. Yet. is ten years old today. There’s a tour about to start. One more for the road.
Caroline van Oosten de Boer
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
* And screw the lads for being so insecure about that album. *grin*

Guess the title of U2’s upcoming tour

Live on French radio station NRJ on Monday night, U2 were asked what the title of their upcoming tour will be. Bono replied – excusez his French:

“It’s something to do with kissing the future and fucking the past…”

Can you guess the title?

Continue for a summary of (part of) the interview editor writes ‘U2 Diary’’s Matt McGee is writing a book about U2 entitled ‘U2 Diary’.

The book will be a history of the band in a timeline/diary format and it will detail the important stories behind the facts.

It’s scheduled to appear in Fall, 2008 and will be published by Omnibus Press. This is the same publisher as Pimm Jal de la Parra’s and’s own Caroline van Oosten de Boer’s ‘U2 Live – A Concert Documentary’.

Matt will be blogging about the book at He is asking for your help and looking for stories, sightings, events, photos, newspaper/magazine scans that may help him write the book.

Good luck, Matt!

Vertigo tour concludes in Hawaii

Photo by Ruth Barohn/

(Click on the above photo to see a slideshow of photos from the Honolulu show by Ruth Barohn/

We’ve heard from our staff and friends who attended the final show of the Vertigo Tour in Honolulu, Hawaii. Everyone reports it was a fabulous show — perfect in every way. Our first report from our I-Wanna-Blog-for-U2log contest winner, Tim Nafus, was a text message before the show that read “So many red shirts, it’s like being at a Cardinals’ game.” Funny, Tim. Tim will be enjoying some time in Hawaii before he gets down to the business of providing a proper report of the show for us. In the meantime, we offer some great photos of the show from Ruth Barohn and dish on who from the celebrity world was in attendance.

The mix desk saw the likes of Kid Rock, Pierce Brosnan, Billie Joe Armstrong (Green Day) and his family, Scott Ian (Anthrax), and someone who “may or may not be one of the Red Hot Chili Peppers.” In the guest seats were Ben Affleck, Bill and Melinda Gates, Susan Buffett, Bobby Shriver, Mira Sorvino, and the cast of the television show “Lost,” including Evangeline Lilly, Dominic Monaghan, Terry O’Quinn, Josh Holloway, and Ian Cusick. Jeremy Piven of “Entourage” was the only celeb spotted inside the ellipse.

For the final Vertigo show, there were special guest appearances in the forms of Billie Joe Armstrong of Green Day joining U2 for “The Saints Are Coming,” and Eddie Vedder and Mike McCready of Pearl Jam joining the band for a performance of Neil Young’s “Rockin’ in the Free World.”

The final word of the tour came from Larry Mullen Jr., who was left alone on stage as the band concluded “All I Want Is You.” Larry thanked the audience for coming and said, “See you real soon,” leaving fans wondering if U2 will be performing concerts again sooner than anyone might expect.

I-Wanna-Blog-for-U2log contest winner

We are pleased to announce the winner of our I-Wanna-Blog-for-U2log contest. Tim Nafus of New York City will receive an OTX Extreme Luau & Ticket Package, so he may attend and report on the final show of the Vertigo tour for Nafus won over the editors with his impressive writing sample, which detailed how he can cook thirty-minute brownies in twenty minutes — among many other such important skills. Nafus was the only applicant who purchased beers for the editors, which heavily influenced our decision.

We thank all the fans who entered the contest. Every submission entertained the editors. We will be inviting many of the contest applicants to write content for the site in the future.

Aloha, Tim!

Vertigo tour tickets can still be found has learned about ticket availability to some of the rescheduled Vertigo tour shows.

“Vertigo tour? What’s that?” you ask.

Well, it’s this thing where four guys stand on an elliptical stage and make a lot of noise. You want tickets to see it, right?

If you answered “yes” to that question, you may be wondering about where to find tickets, aside from vermin scalpers. suggests that fans turn to each other first for tickets. Check for ticket trades and sales at fan forums. has created a ticket trade group on Google. also has a popular ticket trading forum.

If you have no luck finding tickets from other fans, consider using OTX, the tour and travel operator designated by TNA, the promoter of the Vertigo tour. OTX has just announced that it has a new block of general admission floor tickets for the sold-out shows scheduled in Auckland, New Zealand. OTX has also recently put its packages for the shows in Japan on sale.

Speaking of Japan…our friends at tell us that general admission tickets to the three shows at Saitama Arena were not easy to obtain when they went on public sale in September. Fans had to compete with ticket brokers, which are numerous and very popular in Japan, to get the best tickets.

Image courtesy of

General admission will be handled differently in Japan than anywhere else on the tour. General admission at Saitama Arena will be divided into three blocks: Blocks A, BL, and BR. In addition to a block number, all GA tickets include a position number — from 1 to 4,000. Fans will be granted entrance into the blocks in numerical order. The system sounds a bit crazy, but it does work to keep fans from rushing and crushing.

We’d hate to be the schmuck who has to call out the numbers.

Coretta Scott King dead at 78

Bono's New Mama
Bono and Coretta Scott King, Atlanta, January 2004. Photo ©Ruth Barohn/

Coretta Scott King , wife of slain civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr., died on Monday, a spokesperson for the King family says. She was 78 and had been recovering at home since suffering a stroke and heart attack in August.

Flags at the King Center were lowered to half-staff on Tuesday morning.

In January 2004, when Bono was awarded for his humanitarian efforts, he praised Mrs King’s civil rights efforts and said: “I haven’t had a mom in a long time, she volunteered to be mine.” Mrs King told the audience: “This is my son.”

Bono tells “It’s a lot of bowls, really.”

Imagine a cold London night. See The Edge hovering near Bono’s shoulder. Spot the ‘talented mates’ Guggi and Gavin sitting down in the gutter, sipping champagne. Elsewhere, watch Paul McGuinness opening the boot of his car, pulling out a black bag to treat Howie B to a copy of U2’s new album… co-founder Ben Hopkinson talks to Bono at the Osborne Samuel gallery in London on Wednesday night:

Ben: “You made a speech about Guggi’s paintings tonight, can you give us a quote?”

Bono: “It’s a lot of bowls, really…” (laughs)

Ben: “You must be proud to have so many talented mates.”

Bono: “I don’t really understand, you know, what was going on with the water on Cedarwood Road. But I think the three of us, Gavin Friday, myself and Guggi, all had… interesting fathers. I think that was something to do with it — I guess, something to rebel against. Something I hope not to offer my daughter…” (laughs)

So there we have it. Dublin water and Irish fathers are to blame for the unholy trinity, Messrs Friday, Gugs and Bono. Let’s drink to that.

The Most Photographic Village Ever

We have given our image discussion group at a new name — The Village — and a new reason to join it: we’ve been adding a lot of photos to the pool for members’ review.

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