U2’s Bono Talks with David Remnick—Live

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Last month, The New Yorker published a Personal History about growing up in Ireland during the nineteen-sixties and seventies. It covers the interfaith marriage of the author’s parents, which was unusual in Dublin; his mother’s early death; and finding his calling in music. The author was Bono, for more than forty years the lyricist and lead singer of one of the biggest rock bands on the planet. As U2 sold out arenas and stadiums, Bono held forth on a range of social causes; he became “the definitive rock star of the modern era,” as Kelefa Sanneh puts it. Bono joined David Remnick at the 2022 New Yorker Festival to talk about his new memoir, “Surrender.” “When I sang in U2, something got ahold of me,” Bono said. “And it made sense of me.” They discussed how the band almost ended because of the members’ religious faith, and how they navigated the Troubles as a bunch of young men from Dublin suddenly on the world stage. Bono shared a life lesson from Paul McCartney, and he opened up about the early death of his mother. “This wound in me just turned into this opening where I had to fill the hole with music,” Bono said. In the loss of a loved one, “there's sometimes a gift. The opening up of music came from my mother.”

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