Talk:U2/Archive 2

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The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.


U2 worldwide album sales

What the hell kind of source is that for the worldwide sales of U2's individual albums? Some guy in a U2 forum? Are you freaking kidding me? Sources like that just make wikipedia look like a joke. Get rid of them. 24.49.83.40 21:22, 17 June 2006 (UTC)

Totally agreed. "Footnotes" #23 to #38 are all from the same chat room. Pretty lame.
If you want better information, or more accurate record sales, I suggest you do a better job. For now, information stays.

History/formation section

This section is listed almost verbatim from http://www.u2talk.com/bio.php. I think we need to rewrite it. Any takers? Wikipedia brown 06:54, 19 June 2006 (UTC)

Never mind, that page is a copy of this page. This is all very confusing. Wikipedia brown 07:06, 19 June 2006 (UTC)

When Referring to U2

...Should the speaker use the singular voice ("U2 has released many successful albums...") or the plural voice ("U2 are predominantly Christian...")?

I am not sure what Wiki's stance on this issue is.

"U2" is singular; there is only one band. EVula 23:37, 23 June 2006 (UTC)
YEs, only one band but it's convention to refer to groups as if they were plural. Ie, No-one says "The Beatles is coming", or "The Police was...". Definetly plural.--Merbabu 02:33, 24 June 2006 (UTC)
Well, collective nouns are singular in American english and plural in British english. I would assume that in Ireland, they use British english, not American english, thus I would say make it plural. Bsd987 21:25, 26 June 2006 (UTC)
Plural it is, then. --William 00:28, 1 July 2006 (UTC)
Being that it's plural, shouldn't the first line should read "U2 are an Irish rock band"? --Luminousbit 17:19, 8 August 2006 (UTC)
Yes - it should be "U2 are", but I can't be bothered in an edit war over something minor like that. If someone else wants to change it "are", go ahead. cheers --Merbabu 02:28, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
Grammatically, the correct way sentence would read "U2 is an Irish rock band." U2 is the name of the band and thus, a collective noun. The example of the Beatles is not the best example because the name has been taken to be plural. Any reference to a single member of the band often reads like this "John Lennon was a Beatle" or "John Lennon was a member of The Beatles". Bands like Green Day, and N'Sync both use the singular. However, Backstreet Boys uses the plural because the name is plural and can be used to refer to the group members indivitually (i.e. a "backstreet boy") Nevertheless, it's sort of an unnessecary distinction and, thus, shouldn't be worryed about as much. --omtay38 19:31, 9 August 2006 (UTC)

Edits on Fri 24 June and Sat 25 June

I went through the article line by line. I agree with much of 170.61.20.229 comments (why don’t you sign in???) and have left them in the article but the new heading regime is inappropriate. The first reason should be enough – it was previously ordered along albums and tours; factual and actual dates and events. The new edits base the article on less tangible “periods” (ie, “height of popularity). These might be FINE for a rock magazine, but not appropriate for an encyclopedia as wiki. Furthermore, many of the actual headings were highly POV, provided little material info and in places were arguably even incorrect. Ie, “Height of Popularity”. The new headings grouped the periods covering War and UF. Yet, the band themselves when grouping the periods puts Boy, October, War in the first period, the UF til 1989 in the next period. It could even be argued that they are POV, so best to stick to indisputable facts rather than debateable “periods”. I reinstated many links to the main album and tour articles that were recently removed. Having the “main article” links at the top of a section hopefully discourages editors from filling out this main U2 article with all the little details of an album of tour – rather, place them in the tour or album articles. This main article can only be a summary of albums, etc. --Merbabu 03:50, 24 June 2006 (UTC)

Genre, Part II

Okay, here goes: I know that they're not Alternative Rock, because they really don't fit the bill for it. The problem with U2 is that they really aren't any genre, per se. When I put Alternative Rock there, it was kind of a general thing... They're alternative alternative. Or something like that. But they aren't pop, and they sure as heck aren't art rock. A good example of art rock would be Dark Side of the Moon, of which U2 shares no similarities. Bono said that U2 is a Folk band, perhaps we should put that in there somewhere. 69.145.123.171 Hello! Saturday, June 24, 2006, 04:12 (UTC)

Why are they not Rock?!? Maybe that is not a perfect fit for some, but it is a lot closer than "Alternative Rock". As for bono saying they are a folk band, that is just off the cuff "bono talk" and even though it's --Merbabu 04:22, 24 June 2006 (UTC)his band shuld not be considered a reliable source. lol
I never said they aren't rock, I said they aren't alternative rock. Alternative rock bands are... Different. Not much like U2, though. 69.145.123.171 Hello! Saturday, June 24, 2006, 04:28 (UTC)
OK, but the history page shows you removed the Rock" category. i will put it back (and leave Alternative Rock). cheers --Merbabu 04:33, 24 June 2006 (UTC)
I took it out because it's really ambiguous. Rock is such a general term, something a little more specific would be nice. 69.145.123.171 Hello! Saturday, June 24, 2006, 04:36 (UTC)
Hmm, i understand your thinking, but being specific is where we run into trouble, because it is extremely difficult to label a band like U2 to one specific genre. They have songs that can easily fit Pop, Rock, Alt Rock, Blues, etc. Keeping it general with something like Rock is valuable because it is the MOST correct (albeit general). Ie, they are more Rock than they are classical or jazz, and depending on your defintion of Pop, they are more ROck than Pop. --Merbabu 04:42, 24 June 2006 (UTC)
Sigh... You're right, I just hate keeping it so... General. Ah, well. Guess it's better to avoid confusion. Rock it is. 69.145.123.171 Hello! Saturday, June 24, 2006, 04:47 (UTC)
Well, i agree with your reluctance to leave it as it is, but it is, well, the least bad solution. I'd like to be able to see a few tags in their including Rock, Pop, Alt Rock. They don't all apply to all songs but they all have some value. Unfortunately i know someone will see "pop" and delete it thinking that Bullet The Blues Sky is not pop (whereas Sweetest Thing and Stuck in a Moment most certainly are). What can one do? ha ha --Merbabu 04:51, 24 June 2006 (UTC)
PS, getting back to the term "Pop", it depends on ones perspective. If one largely listens to Popular Music, calling U2 "pop" makes no sense. Ie, they are Rock but Madonna or Britney is pop. However, if one looks at all music, then of course U2 is pop (ie Popular Music) and not say Classicalor Jazz. (although calssical and jazz were once the Popular Music of the day). UNless one stricks to broad categories, genres and pigeon-holing are just more trouble than it is worth. --Merbabu 04:55, 24 June 2006 (UTC)
It's just like The Beatles issuse. Rock? Pop? 69.145.123.171 Hello! Saturday, June 24, 2006, 04:58 (UTC)
Yup - a complete and pointless nightmare. --Merbabu 05:08, 24 June 2006 (UTC)

Once again, U2's specific genre is post-punk. The band is heavily influenced by Joy Division/New Order and Television. Bono even appears in the New Order documentary raving about the band; Quincy Jones also appears talking about how Bono once told him that New Order was their biggest influence. Allmusic.com classifies them as post-punk, as does Simon Reynolds' book Rip it Up and Start Again. I'm fine with the box listing "Rock, pop, post-punk". it's concise, accurate, and appropriate.

I really don't get calling them alternative rock, unless everything that got played on college radio in the 80's is considered alternative rock. Which has some merit, but isn't true. WesleyDodds 23:30, 24 June 2006 (UTC)

I've also noticed there's little about their influences, which is a component for a band page reaching Featured status. Plus it helps to understand that the band didn't just pop out of thin air sonically. WesleyDodds 00:46, 25 June 2006 (UTC)
Good point. I think this would be benficial and i don't have all the answers though. I can suggest though that there seems to be maybe two groups of influences: ie, the first group of influences that defined U2 from the start - ie, the influences that they didn't necessarily go and seek out. These were with U2 from the early days/ And secondly those that actively sought - ie, the late '80's with their roots and american music exploration and the early 90's when they actively looked for new influences from dance music (amongst others). Some of the early influences are perhaps: Echo and The Bunnymen, David Bowie, The Who, The Ramones (well, according to Bono), John Lennon. Later maybe Van Morrison? --Merbabu 14:44, 25 June 2006 (UTC)
How can they possibly be labled as post-punk? Given, HTDAAB, along with ALYCLB, could fit the bill. However, TJT, War, and all their earlier albums are not even close. This was before post punk even existed. Boy was before punk rock even became popular, let alone post punk. As for alternative rock, U2 was actually a major influence, as can be found here. U2, along with The Cure and other 70's bands were major influences in what is today Alternative Rock. Besides, post punk is a form of alternative rock. Why not just have both? I know they sound nothing like Alternative Rock is today, but way back when U2 was the definitive Alternative Rock band. --69.145.123.171 21:45, 25 June 2006 (UTC)
Oh, and All Music Guide sez we're both right. --69.145.123.171 21:48, 25 June 2006 (UTC)
The first three albums are definitely post-punk. Everything after that is up to debate. And post-punk came into existence around 1978 with the debut of Public Image Ltd. (whose guitarist Keith Levine has been called an influence on The Edge). WesleyDodds 21:52, 25 June 2006 (UTC)
Yeah, but post punk is still a division of Alternative Rock. I get what you're saying-they're not alternative rock. But in the 70's that's what they were labled, and I think it should be noted that that's what they originated as. The way it looks now seems to work. --69.145.123.171 21:55, 25 June 2006 (UTC)
Except for the pop part. When were they ever pop?--69.145.123.171 21:56, 25 June 2006 (UTC)
U2 are Rock. That's the closest genre but it is very general. But we run into trouble with further subdivisions. They cannot always be consistently applied. Some of their songs are very pop. Ie, sweetest thing, mysterious ways, All i want is you, etc. But the more we try to be specific, the more difficult it gets and the more likely we will disagree. I think it is important to state they are Rock (to distinguish them from Mozart, John Coltrane and Britney), but i really question the value of further sub-division - seriously, what's the benefit? --Merbabu 01:36, 26 June 2006 (UTC)
About your other points: Someone put U2 in the Timeline of alternative rock and we just haven't removed it because some people consider them alternative; they certainly aren't a seminal band in the development of the genre. And read the alternative rock article again; post-punk isn't listed as an alternative genre. The closest thing is the post-punk revival which while taking influence from the original post-punk movement it emerged from the indie rock scene. And "alternative" didn't come into common use until the late 80s. WesleyDodds 21:58, 25 June 2006 (UTC)
Right; and All Music Guide considers them both Post-Punk and alternative rock. As far as legit music sites go, AMG is pretty high up there. Why don't we just leave it at that? Again, I see what you're saying. The are not, by today's standards, Alternative Rock. That's partly because the term itself has become something it wasn't supposed to be. You can recognize an alternative rock song because they all follow basically the same pattern. REM, Foo Fighters, matchbox twenty, they all have similar sounds. That's what's funny though-'alternative rock' was originally used to describe bands that didn't fit into any category, and now it has become a category all on its own. If Pink Floyd was a band that just now started climbing up the charts, they would probably be labled alternative rock until some other genre came up that better described them. The same goes for U2, Coldplay, and the likes. They have very uniquie sounds that really don't fit into anything, and hence, are alternative. --69.145.123.171 22:08, 25 June 2006 (UTC)
You know, it's not impossible for them to be both, since many strands of alternative rock grew out of post-punk. The Cure is one example of a band that's both post-punk and alternative. Post-punk if anything is a transitional phase between punk and alt-rock, but it's ultimately classified as a type of punk rock. My main point is that, for the first few years of their existence, they were unequivocally a post-punk band. Later they refined their own sound and branched outside of their Bowie/Joy Division/Television influences. WesleyDodds 22:18, 25 June 2006 (UTC)
Agreed. Although I think that they leaned a bit more towards alternative rock in their earlier days, what you just said sounds right. --69.145.123.171 22:26, 25 June 2006 (UTC)

Question

I asked this question before but I think it went into the archives, so chances are no one is going to see it. Here it is again. I noticed that the Joshua Tree section of this article doesn't talk about any of the themes and the mood of JT, whereas the War and Boy sections go into some detail. Is it better to add info to the JT section or should we start merging some of the information from the War and Boy sections into the album's own articles? Since this article is already at 50kb, the latter may be more appropriate. It would be great to hear your thoughts, especially Merbabu and Kristbg, both of you have been doing really great work with this article. Wikipedia brown 19:03, 25 June 2006 (UTC)

I think we should put something in the JT section. If we feel the article is getting too big, we can always pull out some stuff from the ATYCLB and HTDAAB sections - people keep adding the latest news to those sections. --Kristbg 20:50, 25 June 2006 (UTC)

Subheadings

Really, a lot of these subheadings are unnecessary or redundant. We don't need a new heading when talking about an album in that albums section, for for every paragraph that talks about a new topic. Whenever I remove them, they keeping being added again. WesleyDodds 22:34, 25 June 2006 (UTC)

Wesley, i understand what you are saying, and at least for some sections you are correct. I initially put in the sub-headings to try and sort out the information - some of the album sections are quite long and do benefit from further sub-division. And in these longer sections, the information was actually spread about with no logical flow - i fixed this order of info at the same time i put the headings in. So when i put the sub-headings into these sections i also put them into the shorter sections, simply for consistency. BUT, i can reconsider that strategy. I suppose, just cos one section is long and is in need of sub-headings, doesn't mean a shorter section must also have them. cheers --Merbabu 01:31, 26 June 2006 (UTC)
OK, so i had a look at the headings you had removed - specifically those in the Boy/October section and the Unforgettable Fire section. My criteria for keeping a sub-heading was the amount of info between headings.I think there is ALMOST a point for removing them from U Fire, but I felt there was just enough to justify it - borderline. As for Boy/OCtober, i think there is a stronger case for leaving the headning seperating them - they were two very different albums, different periods (even though both within short time) and they both have enough info. BUT, i did consolidate headings in the Joshua Tree - Rattle & Hum Sections. I felt there just wasn't enough info there to justify a seperate heading for the Joshua Tree tour, and also the Lovetown tour. As i said earlier, the only reason i put the sub-headings was to try and order the article more (at the same time i remember shift paragraphs and sentences around in a logical "album" then "tour" order - that wasn't there beofre in many cases. So let's just keep our eyes on the flow of the article. --Merbabu 01:52, 26 June 2006 (UTC)
Regarding the Boy/October section: the first heading already says the section is going to cover both albums, so it's assumed both will be discussed in a logical progression. There's no need for the separate headings. This is all part of a larger concern that the page is too long; much of the detail can probably be shifted to other pages. instead of being compartmentalized into sizable subsections. Thus the main U2 page can and should be trimmed down for increased readability. WesleyDodds 06:50, 26 June 2006 (UTC)
I completely agree with you about the length of the overall article - More bits should be moved over to the individual topic articles. I have done a bit of that already. As long as the information is not deleted, but shifted then it is good. If that means that the Boy/October section is shorter and therefore can lose subheadings, that is great. But until it gets shorten, i reckon it is better with the subheadings.--Merbabu 07:11, 26 June 2006 (UTC)
Done! It was a bit of a rough "chop" so please check. --Merbabu 07:17, 26 June 2006 (UTC)
Looks good. Now we should probably work on trimming down everything from Achtung Baby afterwards. WesleyDodds 07:51, 26 June 2006 (UTC)

Genre, Part III

I'm fine with the way it is now, but somebody-seemingly the same person using dynamic IPs-keeps changing it back. Other than adding hidden text, which I already did, can anyone think of anything else we can do? --69.145.123.171 22:41, 26 June 2006 (UTC)

Influences

Regarding the much-needed influence section described above, I've been attempting to do a bit of reading and research on U2's influences, which have obviously drastically changed with each new style of music the band has produced. Here are just a few quotes I found skimming through Bill Flanagan's excellent 1995 book U2 At the End of the World, one of U2's few biographers who clearly knows the band well:

  • Bono, on Achtung Baby and early recording struggles: "It's a cliché, but U2's biggest influences have always been each other. We've always played with each other. We've always played against each other musically. When we came to Berlin we were suddenly, musically, on different levels and that affected each thing. The musical differences affected the personal differences."
  • Maybe not a U2 member quote, but Flanagan on Rattle and Hum: "Let's learn about roots and how the old songwriters did it." Bono's thoughts on technology and the remmodification of rock music are described in detail on pages 24–30 of Flanagan's book.
  • Edge's guitar playing, particularly in the Boy period, greatly resembles that of Public Image Ltd.. Flanagan comments: "U2 did come from P.I.L. And from the Clash, Jam, Patti Smith, Skids, Lou Reed, Bowie, and fifty other places. What sets them apart from their early rivals and influences is where they ended up."
  • Bono on Bowie: "Ziggy Stardust and Aladdin Sane were big influences on U2 and should be acknowledged."

I think the correct way to approach a section on influences is with direct, citable quotes from the band—U2 has such a long history that nearly any great artist may have had some influence on them, but it shouldn't be too hard to come up with a chronological list of their biggest influences. —McMillin24 contribstalk 06:03, 27 June 2006 (UTC)

As I mentioned before, the NewOrderStory features commentary by Bono where he refers to "the godly voice of Ian Curtis" and Quincy Jones mentions how Bono told him that Joy Division/New Order was the band's biggest influence. There's the oft-repeated anecdote about how after Ian Curtis' suicide Bono went up to Tony Wilson and told him "Ian was number one and I was always number two". Also the song "A Day Without Me" from Boy is about the death of Ian Curtis. WesleyDodds 22:54, 27 June 2006 (UTC)

What happened to the band's early history?

Was just browsing here and was struck by the large chunk of the band's early history from 1976 to 1984 being missing. Wisekwai 22:24, 12 July 2006 (UTC)

Larry's "occassional" keyboard and backing vocals, and Bono's "occassional" harmonica

There seems to be a little controversy around the use of the word "occassional" in the first sentences. ALthough i reinstated after its removal a few days ago, i agree it is awkward, BUT strongly feel it is a necessary evil if we are to continute referring to Larry's "occassional" keyboard and backing vocals, and Bono's "occassional" harmonica. If the issue is the "clumbsiness" and "irrelevant" use of the word in the opening sentences, then wouldn't it make more sense to remove reference to the key-board playing, harmonica, etc???? That is what is clumsy and irrelevant. However, if they are to be included, then the article gives a poorly proportioned comment on the roles of the members; let's face facts: Bono is U2's singer, and Larry plays drums - their other performing duties are ancillary and insignificant. At best, Bono "plays" guitar 2 or 3 times a concert and this is the "extra" activity that has the strongest case for inclusion in the opening sentences. The others are indeed extremely rare: the hamonica was played in two songs, and the only time it's been played in the last 10 years was in the early legs only of the Vertigo tour (after a 10 year hiatus), Larry plays single-finger keyboard in 1-song on the current tour only, and his backing vocals are extremely rare (Numb). If we are to include Larry's keyboard and Bono's harmonica, then why not include tambourine (he "played" it occasionally during "Al Because of You") or Edge's bass playing and Adam's lead guitar during "40"???. --Merbabu 05:56, 23 July 2006 (UTC)

Personally, I have heard Larry sing backup ONCE, on the song "Numb". That's it. Shadow1 12:49, 23 July 2006 (UTC)
It isn't a big deal, but if occasionally is added then a disclaimer should naturally follow later in the article (btw: Adam spoke a few words at the end of one song...) --William 00:53, 25 July 2006 (UTC)
Larry also sings backup on "Miracle Drug", for what it's worth. --Pleeker 22:41, 31 July 2006 (UTC)

Irish?

Two of the four members, The Edge and Adam Clayton, were both born in England and both are, as far as I'm aware, both British citizens, so I think that opening the article with "U2 is an Irish rock group" (bold added), with a link to the Republic of Ireland is misleading.

Have U2 collectively described themselves as Irish (in which case it should be sourced)? If not, would it not be better to call them either Anglo-Irish or Anglo-Irish? The Anglo-Irish article is naturally about the historical social and political groups so shouldn't be linked itself. Even if so, I think linking to the Republic of Ireland, a political entity, rather than Ireland, is no more than a case of a republican "claim" to them.

An alternative is to say "U2 is a rock band formed in Dublin, featuring...". I believe this was the consensus reached with AC/DC, which is similarly Scoto-Australian, formerly introduced simply as Australian. Tonyobrienuk 10:28, 5 August 2006 (UTC)

we've been through this before... [[1]]

The Edge may have lived in Ireland since he was a baby, but he's not Irish. He has refused to take Irish citizenship. He's a British citizen, so the link going to the Republic of Ireland is plain wrong. Even if you have "been through this before", it should be changed to one of the four introductions I suggested above. Tonyobrienuk 07:39, 6 August 2006 (UTC)

Citzenship and nationality can be two different things. They all identify as Irish. Why the need to change it? Edge has spent over 40 years in Ireland - how long was he in England for?? Citzenship is a peice of paper - life history is more significant. --Merbabu 07:53, 6 August 2006 (UTC)

It's true that citizenship and nationality are two different things. Citizenship is a matter of political fact and nationality is more a case of self-identification. Even if he has said (and I'm not aware of him doing so) that he self-identifies himself mostly as Irish, that still wouldn't justify a link to the Republic of Ireland, the political entity that he's not a citizen of. I'm not saying that U2 can't be called Irish if they self-identify as Irish. I'm saying you shouldn't link any Irish self-identification to the Republic of Ireland if one of them is a UK and not an ROI citizen, despite being easily qualified to be both (like Adam Clayton) or just an ROI citizen. Linking to the ROI is wrong and should be changed. I suggested four alternatives:

"U2 is an Anglo-Irish rock band" - reflecting their countries of citizenship.

"U2 is an Irish rock band" - reflecting possible self-identification, if The Edge does self-identify as Irish.

"U2 is an Anglo-Irish rock band" - reflecting their places of birth and possible self-identification, if The Edge doesn't self-identify as Irish.

"U2 is a rock band formed in Dublin" - reflecting where the band was formed and an alternative to any of these.

I suggest the last one because it's the least objectionable and follows the precedent set in other articles, notably the AC/DC one. Detailing matters of individual self-identification and citizenship also belong in each member's own article. Tonyobrienuk 09:12, 6 August 2006 (UTC)

  • Your second suggestion is identical, less one word, to what the article currently states... Additionally, I believe the issue of each band member's nationality is discussed in their articles. U2 identifies and is identified as an Irish rock band. The band was formed in Ireland, and therefore is an Irish band. Srose (talk) 16:51, 10 August 2006 (UTC)
    • Yes Srose, not only did the badn form there, it has been based there for the last 30 years, and looks set to continue that way. Or maybe Bono is 2% American cos he spends so much time there?? --Merbabu 02:43, 11 August 2006 (UTC)

While "Ireland" and "Republic of Ireland" may seem like very similar terms, they have extensive articles of their own and the distinction between them is great. While they may all self-identify with Irish culture, which is related to Ireland, they clearly don't all identify with the Republic of Ireland, as one member has refused to take up Irish citizenship, despite the fact that he's entitled to and it probably would be easier for him to have taken it as well. The Republic of Ireland is a country, of which not all members of U2 are citizens, and thus is the wrong article to link to. That's the case even if they do all identify with Ireland, which is an island home to two countries, of which only one is the Republic of Ireland. Linking to ROI smacks of POV "claiming" and is also, given that The Edge has very clearly made his allegiances known, wrong. I was under the impression that these things were undesirable, especially in biographies of living persons. Tonyobrienuk 19:25, 10 August 2006 (UTC)

This whole argument is a non-issue. The lads always call themselves "Irish" and nothing else. Anglo-Irish is completely wrong. It means someone holding a peerage or title from the Kingdom of Ireland or the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. So unless Bono is the Duke of Killiney, and the rest of the lads are earls, barons or baronets, they ain't Anglo-Irish. Edge hasn't taken out Irish citizens because he is proud of his Welsh heritage. As to birth, that is irrelevant. Cliff Richard was born in India, but he isn't referred to as Indian, but British. Éamon de Valera was born in New York but he is universally referred to as Irish, not American. If a child moves from one country to another and grows up and lives their adult lives in another, they are usually referred to by their second identity, not the place that they were born if they did not live there for more than a short period. FearÉIREANNIreland-Capitals.PNG\(caint) 22:12, 10 August 2006 (UTC)
In fairness, that's not the only meaning of "Anglo-Irish". --Ryano 09:41, 15 August 2006 (UTC)

What, exactly, makes Sir Cliff Richard British? He was born in British India in 1940. While India is now a country in its own right, it was back then a British colony. While he may (he prefers not to entertain such speculation) have some Indian blood in him, he is mostly of British descent. He also has a British passport. In summary, he was born in British sovereign territory, is of British descent and is a British citizen. That's why we call him British, not because his family moved to the UK when he was a child.

The Edge was born in British sovereign territory, is of British descent and proudly holds a British passport. By the same logic, we call him British. That he and his parents have chosen to live in the Republic of Ireland doesn't make him any less British, especially since British citizens have all had right of abode in the Republic of Ireland (and vice versa) for decades.

If you wish to contend otherwise, please do go ahead and quote him (that is, not Bono) saying that he feels Irish, but that still wouldn't warrant any link to the Republic of Ireland, a country of which he's not, and never has been, a citizen. He's a citizen of the United Kingdom and, given that he could've handed in his British passport and taken Irish citizenship at any point in the last 40 years, clearly proud to be one. Linking to the Republic of Ireland is, therefore, not in the spirit of his request to remain a British citizen and not an Irish one, and thus should not be used to describe the entire band, certainly not as the first link in the entire article. Tonyobrienuk 16:37, 11 August 2006 (UTC)

An absolutely silly and ridiculous argument. All four U2 members describe the band as Irish. Edge has openly ridiculed the time they were awarded a "best British band" award. As he put it "you know a Irish band is a success when the British start trying to claim it for themselves." There is no argument. The band is Irish, not British, not half British or anything else.
As to the Cliff Richard nonsense, India was not a creation of Britain, however much some British people (typically) like to claim otherwise. Britain took over a subcontinent, ruled it (frequently badly) then left. Richard was born in India. So he is Indian. Calling him British because Britain happened to rule India at the time is as prosperterous as calling Jomo Kenyatta British because Britain ruled Kenya, as calling Nelson Mandela British because Britain when he was born ruled South Africa, calling George Washington because the United States was a British colony when he was born. Richard is a British singer because culturally he is a product of Britain, just as U2 are Irish because culturally they are a product of Ireland. This nonsense about U2 not being Irish is just a waste of time. The issue is cut and dried. Issue closed. FearÉIREANNIreland-Capitals.PNG\(caint) 18:08, 11 August 2006 (UTC)

The fact of the matter is that the reason Cliff Richard was born in Lucknow was that India was a British colony at the time. He would've been born either in the UK or in another British colony were India not one. He's not (at, at least, not significantly) of Indian descent and doesn't have Indian citizenship, which is why he's considered British rather than Indian. Fulfilling one of the three criteria I've mentioned does not determine nationality, and being born in a particular country is, while one of the easiest, is the weakest of the criteria. As Lord Wellington, who was born in Ireland to British parents and was a loyal British subject and is, again, almost universally considered British, said, "a man can be born in a stable, and yet not be an animal". The people you named are generally not considered British, not because they lived far away from the UK (in whatever form it took at the time) but because they didn't fulfil all the major criteria for most people's judges of nationality. When Kenya introduced Kenyan citizenship in 1967, Jomo Kenyatta became a Kenyan citizen. When India introduced Indian citizenship in 1955, Cliff Richard did not become an Indian citizen, and nor did The Edge when his family moved to the ROI. South Africa actually gained independence 8 years before Nelson Mandela was born. That aside, Kenyatta wasn't and Mandela isn't of British descent (they're of African descent, their dark complexion being a give-away), whereas Cliff Richard is. George Washington is more complex, given that he was a loyal British subject at a time before the American colonies were considered a nation in any sense, and long before the UK enacted proper citizenship laws. As a result, he is often described as British before the American Revolution but not after it. The fact that he is considered British before despite living in what is today the United States, thousands of miles from the UK proper, proves my point that living somewhere does not determine nationality. And that's notwithstanding the far greater ease of living where one chooses today than it was 250 years ago when Washington was a loyal British person.

In summary:

Born in UK sovereign territory? Of British ancestry? British citizenship? Therefore British?
Nelson Mandela No No No No
Jomo Kenyatta Yes No No No
George Washington Yes Yes Before Revolution Before Revolution
Cliff Richard Yes Yes Yes Yes
The Edge Yes Yes Yes Yes

Understand? Good. Now we've got that out of the way, I reiterate that any association with Ireland, as may or may not be the case (as I am completely unfamiliar with that quote - do you have a link?), does not change the fact that The Edge is a loyal citizen of the United Kingdom, and would rather be one than a citizen of the Republic of Ireland. We should respect his wish to be known as a British subject and thus refrain from linking to the Republic of Ireland article right at the beginning of this article as it violates all of the major guidelines on biographies of living persons. I therefore provided several alternatives, and there are many more that might be considered (like "U2 is an Irish rock band"). I do appreciate that the use of the term "Anglo-Irish" may be confusing given its historical social meaning. It is for this reason that I offered alternatives to it. However, it is still a valid description of something that is both English or British and Irish at the same time, and I did address this point previously. Furthermore, I will remind you again that the current introduction is wrong. The only reason that I haven't replaced it already with my best suggested version is because I wishes to attain a consensus about what it should be changed to, not whether or not it should be changed. I did propose that the article begin "U2 are a rock band formed in Dublin" to avoid such discourse about the varying citizenship and/or nationality of such members, as it avoids the issue completely, and will accept it as default if there is no such consensus. Tonyobrienuk 19:45, 11 August 2006 (UTC)

The fact that you misunderstand British subject and are unaware of the legal changes regarding the term speaks volumes. As to Edge being a "loyal citizen of the United Kingdom", isn't it strange how such a "loyal citizen" of Her Majesty chooses not to pay taxes to Her Majesty. Not exactly very loyal, is it? U2 are an Irish band according to themselves, the BBC, Canada's Globe and Mail and thousands of other sources, from biographies to Time magazine and Newsweek to the Times of London and the Telegraph, to newspapers in South Africa, ABC News in the US, etc. You name it. They say it. There is nothing to debate. You are simply trying to push a POV agenda.

The issue is closed. The article calls them what they are: an Irish band. FearÉIREANNIreland-Capitals.PNG\(caint) 21:24, 11 August 2006 (UTC)

I don't think the issue is closed, actually.

The Edge could have taken Irish citizenship and cut all ties with the UK, and spending almost the entirity of his life in the ROI one might've thought that would have been the easy way out, but, in what can only be reasoned as a show of loyalty, has chosen not to, so I'll thank you not to cut those ties for him.

My problem is not with them being called an Irish band if, indeed, they all do self-identify as Irish (that was one of my four suggestions, after all), which is yet to be demonstrated, but with the link to the Republic of Ireland in the very first line when some members aren't from or citizens of the country, and the sources you've provided don't even mention the Republic of Ireland, so could mean anything when they describe U2 as "Irish". For example, the terms "Irish rock band" or "Irish band", which I'm fine using if it removes any political connotations, can mean a band that plays Irish rock, as U2 do, or it can mean that the band is, in some way, Irish, but there's no mention of the Republic of Ireland so there's no validation of the current situation. Claiming that being Irish means being related to the Republic of Ireland, rather than being related to Ireland or to any number of Irish things that are older than Irish republicanism, like Irish music, is what's POV and should be removed not only to be NPOV but to reflect the wishes of The Edge in remaining a British citizen, even if he has said at some time or another that he feels Irish. The use of the word "Irish" is not the issue, as I have now explained several times.

As for my so-called misunderstanding, I used the term "subject" when describing The Edge casually, not technically, and in casual parlance the term "subject" can be used perfectly well to describe any citizen of a monarchy. Just ask your friends at the BBC or Globe and Mail. I remind yourself that I wouldn't resort to being so casual in writing if you hadn't required me to repeat myself several times. One might comment just as pointlessly and snarkily that you saying that The Edge can't be loyal if he doesn't pay taxes to Her Majesty the Queen "speaks volumes" of your knowledge of the taxation system and concept of loyalty since taxation is paid to HM Revenue and Customs, not Her Majesty the Queen, whose loyalty is hardly in doubt despite not making out cheques to herself. However, there's no need for ad hominem remarks when you know full well that discussions of such issues are irrelevant. Tonyobrienuk 00:11, 12 August 2006 (UTC)

lol. --Merbabu 02:13, 12 August 2006 (UTC)
lol As I have said, There is no issue to discuss. If sources say they are an Irish band, and they all do (apart from the usual British publications that like to claim anything successful on the planet as British) then Wikipedia under NPOV rules has to say that U2 is an Irish band. What you want to push falls foul of OR so is a dead issue. So the situation is simple. Issue Closed. QED. FearÉIREANNIreland-Capitals.PNG\(caint) 01:29, 13 August 2006 (UTC)

The issue is not about them being described as an Irish band. You have proved yourself intransigent despite my pointing it out many times, which I assume is deliberate because I have made this so clear. Tonyobrienuk 04:29, 13 August 2006 (UTC)

Funny then that you deleted the reference to them being an Irish band, from the opening of the article! lol. Reverted. And will be every time you try to push your OR. FearÉIREANNIreland-Capitals.PNG\(caint) 04:33, 13 August 2006 (UTC)
All this time tonyobrienuk did not attempt to change the text. yet when it was overly clear that his veiws were against the consensus here, he went and changed the article anyway - lol. That's not how it works! (btw, what is "OR"). --Merbabu 04:49, 13 August 2006 (UTC)
His logic is . . . well illogical! OR is Original Research. It means that WP is there simply to be a compendium of existing information and sources, not to be a place where individuals push their new theories. If the entire planet says U2 are Irish, and the band say they are Irish, then as that is the sourced statement we have to go with it. Saying, as he does, everyone says x but I believe y is correct and must be used is breaching the OR rule, the Neutral Point of View rule, the sourcing rules, and a host of others. BTW have you noticed how he had not edited any other page. He seems to have come to WP with the sole intention of getting this article changed to the way he wants it. It smells slightly fishy. (Is this a journalist seeking to see how easy can WP be manipulated, someone in the music industry messing, or a crusading individual looking to find someone somewhere to listen to his viewpoint? I wonder.) FearÉIREANNIreland-Capitals.PNG\(caint) 04:57, 13 August 2006 (UTC)

Several of my suggestions included the word "Irish", so you're wrong to say I'm opposed to using that word altogether. I am opposed to linking to the Republic of Ireland for the reasons given above (that you haven't refuted) and thus believe that the current version, which does link to the ROI, should be changed.

I propose the version to which I changed it, and from which you reverted it, if no consensus to what it should be changed is reached. That's because such wording is the least objectionable of the options and because the articles of many other bands with members of different birth and nationality begin like that. I have explained this all before. It avoids having to judge what sources are valid or not to ensure maximum NPOV, it avoids republicans trawling for pages linking to Ireland and changing it back to the ROI without bothering to appreciate that it was changed for a very good reason and it is indisputable and thus non-divisive. Nor could it possibly be construed as my OR or POV since these things (that they're a rock band and that they were formed in Dublin) are already stated elsewhere in the article.

If you disagree with it being changed from a link to the ROI, say why and we can have a discussion. If you don't, say what you want it to be changed to. If you don't, I will change it again.

And, because you asked, I've edited pages before as an unregistered member. However, since I wanted to raise this specific point in talk, don't have a static IP and think talk edits should be signed and stamped, I signed up. Tonyobrienuk 05:12, 13 August 2006 (UTC)

You still don't get it. You said to say what I "want it changed to". How many more times does this have to be said before you get it. I do not want it changed. No-one else but you wants it changed here. Have you finally got the message??? You are alone in your crusade and it is not being changed simply because you have a bugbear and decide that everyone else who works on the article, every book, every broadcast organisation, every newspaper, the President of the United States, his precedessor, NME, the BBC, Hot Press, VH1, MTV etc etc etc, not to mention the band themselves all of whom say, unambiguously U2 are an Irish band, are wrong and you are right. You write about what is "least objectionable". Nobody (but you) sees anything to object to in using the standard language used in all other sources. You alone have "an issue".
So, for the umpteenth time, the issue is closed. C.L.O.S.E.D (Now is that clear enough, or do the users on this page have to write it in six inch lettering before you actually get the message?) lol FearÉIREANNIreland-Capitals.PNG\(caint) 05:28, 13 August 2006 (UTC)

No, you still don't get it. Here you go again saying "U2 are an Irish band" and citing all sorts of people that describe them as such. I don't have a problem with them being called an Irish band. However, "every book, every broadcast organisation, every newspaper, the President of the United States, his precedessor [sic], NME, the BBC, Hot Press, VH1, MTV etc etc etc" do call them Irish, but they don't have the link tags that Wikipedia does. "Irish" can mean several things, and "Irish band" even more. One of the meanings of "Irish" is "of the Republic of Ireland", something to which I object being used in this article because of the split citizenship and nationality of the members. Claiming that any description of them as Irish must mean "of the Republic of Ireland" is POV and, in this case, wrong. They may well be described as an Irish band, but that does not justify the link to the Republic of Ireland that currently exists in the first sentence. I shouldn't have to explain it this many times for you to understand.

Now maybe you want the word "Irish" to be used in there: that's fine. Would "U2 are an Irish rock band", which avoids the link to the ROI but retains context and the word "Irish", be better than the one to which I changed it? Tonyobrienuk 05:54, 13 August 2006 (UTC)

It just occured to me that if we went with TonyUK's suggestion of "U2 were formed in Dublin", some bright spark will go and put Dublin, Republic of Ireland. Which is exactly what he doesn't want. As for this argument, of all the things to worry about - lol --Merbabu 06:15, 13 August 2006 (UTC)

Actually, I'm fine with it being Dublin, Republic of Ireland because Dublin is the capital of the Republic of Ireland and that is the only country it is in. U2's members come from, have their family roots in and are citizens of two different countries, so I think naming only one of these is wrong. I just don't think the "Republic of Ireland" bit (or just "Ireland", as it is in many articles) is necessary.

Incidentally, I'd like to think that you didn't omit my surname (O'Brien) from my username but leave in my country (the UK) in order to make me sound more partial. If it is the case, I'd rather you didn't. Tonyobrienuk 06:41, 13 August 2006 (UTC)

One final point. Apparently, The Edge moved here when he was 1 years of age, and later married his secondary school girlfriend, Aislinn O Sullivan. Apparently, also, Adam Clayton moved here when he was 5 years of age. If that's as "English" as the band gets then this entire debate is obviously a non sequitur. El Gringo 13:48, 13 August 2006 (UTC)

A bit silly. Of course U2 is an Irish band. Phone them up and ask! Or try Google, that way is easier! MelForbes 15:01, 13 August 2006 (UTC)

Yes, thank you, we've all been over this many, many times before. Everyone agrees U2 are Irish, but people clearly don't agree what the word "Irish" means. My argument is that the word "Irish" linking to the Republic of Ireland, when two members aren't from the ROI, nor are their parents and nor is one of their passports, is wrong. Of the alternatives I proposed, most of them include the word "Irish", so can we please just stop citing sources that call them Irish and say either why we think it shouldn't be changed or say what we think it should be changed to? It's really, really simple. Tonyobrienuk 18:52, 13 August 2006 (UTC)

I actually tend to agree that the link to Republic of Ireland is odd, simply for the reason that "Irish" is not synonymous with being from the RoI. However, it does seem to be in line with established Wikipedia practice, so it's probably not productive to argue it out in respect of one specific article. There are all sorts of edit wars going on about whether people should be described as "Northern Irish", "British" or "Irish" or whatever. I would suggest that you take a broader view on this issue and perhaps seek to raise it on the Irish Wikipedians' notice board or elsewhere. --Ryano 09:41, 15 August 2006 (UTC)

As far as I've seen, "Irish" almost always links to Ireland, and all "Irish X" articles are about the whole of Ireland too. As such, I was under the impression that the difference between Ireland and the Republic of Ireland was to be made clear, the opposite of what you appear to be saying. If it isn't, surely all that does is make something like "U2 is a rock band from Dublin", which avoids the issue altogether, more clearly the best choice. Tonyobrienuk 00:30, 16 August 2006 (UTC)


Tony, your reasoning is very confusing - never let it be said that more words makes things clearer! Are you concerned over the use of "ROI" and would rather see the more general "Irish" used? Or are you debating whether they actually are Irish. What i find to be "really, really simple" is the fact that all members have grown up in Irish Dublin, in the ROI, lived there adult lives there, have their families (parents, spouses, children) there and Irishness is the biggest national or cultural identity influence on them. Compared to all this, what it actually says in their passports or the location of their maternity ward is may be a factual distinction, but is irrelevant.

Furthermore, the article states that the BAND is Irish. It certainly not does not have a British passport, was not born in Wales, and its parents are not English. It was formed, spent 30 years in Dublin, and looks set to continue like that. By the way, Dublin is in the ROI, but i can accept "Irish" also - just don't go calling it Anglo-Irish.

As for your table, you forgot to include a feild for where the person spent most of their life. This is the dominant factor and would make Edge's case in line with Mandela's in your example. (people have all sorts of reasons for keeping their birth passport and i know many immigrants who would punch you if you suggested they are not a member of their new country). --Merbabu 01:53, 16 August 2006 (UTC)

When one member of the band has made it absolutely clear that they would rather be known as a British citizen than an Irish citizen, I think that the link to the Republic of Ireland (and not the UK), is disrespectful of this wish and thus is a violation of the guidelines for writing biographies of living persons.

Furthermore, the word "Irish" has several different meanings, of which "of the Republic of Ireland" is one. The convention that "Irish" does not by default mean "of the Republic of Ireland" in Wikipedia is made clear by the fact that relevant articles like Irish people include people from both the ROI and the UK. However U2 might be described as Irish by news sources doesn't make it clear what definition they mean. Assuming that it means "of the Republic of Ireland" is POV, pushing an agenda of the ROI monopolising all uses of the word "Ireland" like the one El Gringo was trying to push (below). Using sources calling them Irish to argue that a link to the ROI is justified is also a reinterpretation of other's words and could be construed as OR, which is also prohibited.

Technically the band could be described as Anglo-Irish. While British-Irish is becoming the more common term, Anglo-Irish is still a valid adjective for something that is part British or English and part Irish, like the Anglo-Irish Agreement. It's not really the issue, because I was never going to propose using the term myself, but it is another case of you all concerning yourselves with the wrong definition despite my repeated clarifications.

I didn't forget to include a field for where people live. I deliberately excluded it for a reason I've given before but will repeat again: it's not one of the ways people judge nationality. Living in a country doesn't affect your nationality much, and not at all if there is a right of abode for that person in the country. Living in Dublin is not a reflection of The Edge being Irish. Indeed, he lives there because, as British citizens, he and his parents always had that right to live in the ROI. When they moved to Dublin, they weren't giving up any part of their or their son's nationality but in fact exercising a right that their British citizenship uniquely granted them.

As for your unreasonable and violent immigrant friends, there would be an easier, and far more legal, way of proving that they're Irish if they want to: getting an Irish passport. Someone who would rather keep a Polish passport than an Irish one hasn't really committed themselves to being a "member of their new country", have they? The Edge could've gotten an Irish passport at any time in his adult life. The fact that he hasn't speaks volumes for his own perception of his nationality. If he considered himself an Irish national, rather than a British national whose right as a British national it is to live in the Republic of Ireland, he wouldn't have repeatedly renewed his British citizenship. Tonyobrienuk 06:41, 16 August 2006 (UTC)

Your quote "Living in Dublin is not a reflection of The Edge being Irish." sums this whole disucssion up. That's a very narrow and blinkered definition - the term Irish is describing more than nationality. Thus, according to your line of reasoning, Edge is British but tomorrow he'd be Irish if he simply got an ROI passport, and tore up his British passport? Alternatively, if he moved to the UK tomorrow after 40 odd years living in Ireland, he'd be no more Irish than Michael Jackson? The suggestion that someone's loyalty to a country (and hence by implication their value to that country) can only be measured by a peice of paper is also narrow-minded, mean-sprited - even nasty. The virtue of expecting one "to chose one or the other" is whole different question, the point being, people have many reasons to hold onto a certain citizenship. Do you know why Edge still holds a British passport? For example, are there any dual citizenship laws in play here? Apparently you differ, but to me, one's chosen country of residence for 25 years plus, country of upbringing, chosen country of upbrining for his children, is far more indicative of a person's national identity than a peice of paper (plastic?). I think you need to look at this question more broadly. It's more than just nationality.
Furthermore, the above is largely redundant - you did not respond to my point about the article actually says "the band" is Irish. It doesn't say the members are.
Btw, I note you have made no attempt to edit The Edge article in this respect. --Merbabu 07:47, 16 August 2006 (UTC)

PS, Tony, i think you better get your stories straight. IN the section below you said on the 13th you are not objecting to them being called Irish. Yet today (16th) you are arguing that Edge is not Irish. Come on. It is clear you are just playing games. Game Over. "Anyone who brings up them being "Irish" again, when I've said God knows how many times that I'm not complaining about them being called Irish but with the word "Irish" having a link to the ROI, can only be assumed to be deliberately intransigent. Tonyobrienuk 15:28, 13 August 2006 (UTC)"


When Bono was asked about whether The Edge would give up his British citizenship or take dual citizenship, he said "Edge is more turn-of-the-century, H G Wells era and very British in his way. Edge wouldn't". I'm not saying that The Edge doesn't have some kind of allegiance to the ROI. However, as strong as that allegiance may be, his allegiance to the UK is stronger, which is why he would prefer to remain a British citizen and not an Irish one. You are, of course, correct in saying that there are many reasons to hold onto a certain citizenship, but there are also many reasons to live in a country even with no intent of becoming a citizen of it. Musicians pay no tax in the ROI, whereas musicians in the UK do. The fact that he'd be millions of Euros worse off, if a member of U2 at all since he would be living far from the other members of the band, might have something to do with him remaining in a country he doesn't want to be a citizen of, but it has nothing to do with being Irish or British.

Linking to the Republic of Ireland relates to a political entity and infers something of the band's political allegiances. A (non-constructed) band itself can't have allegiances: only the members can. When a member has made it clear that his political allegiance doesn't lie with the ROI, it's wrong to link to it anyway. You can't say that the band is Irish without saying something about the members' own relationships with the ROI.

The issue isn't being discussed in the The Edge article's own talk page because I don't object to that article. The Edge article doesn't call him Irish, and when it calls U2 an Irish band, it doesn't link to the Republic of Ireland, the two things I might possibly object to.

I should point out, because you've clearly got the wrong idea (evidently deliberately), that the "them" I say I don't mind being called Irish means U2 collectively. Whether or not The Edge is considered "Irish" or U2 are collectively considered "Irish", as fun diversions as they are, it would still be wrong to link to the Republic of Ireland, which does not hold a monopoly over all uses of the word "Irish". This has been my position throughout. Sorry, Merbabu's ego. Tonyobrienuk 00:39, 17 August 2006 (UTC)

Tonyobrienuk, are you for real, or are you just trolling out some sort of wiki-fatigue? The point is pointless. The band was formed in Dublin, Ireland, by Larry Mullen. It was Irish based, Irish promoted and Irish successful most probably long before you ever heard the name being mentioned. And then they went international, and that is probably when you first herad of them. But the origin of the band is Dublin, Ireland. MelForbes
This is getting really silly. You can find and identify all the dots, but you have no clue how to connect, let alone interpret them. Either that, or you are not for real - people can see that you are seriously inconsistent with your arguments. You will say one thing and then say you never said that. Do you have no better use for your time? How ridiculous. Merbabu 13:40, 17 August 2006 (UTC)
Why, rather than addressing my arguments, do you resort to flaming me? If they're so "inconsistent", it shouldn't be too difficult. You're the one complained "you did not respond to my point", but none of you have responded to any of my points, instead resorting to strawman arguments and picking on irrelevant uses of words like "subject".
If you're so adamant that I said something, why don't you quote me and have me explain what my code (AKA English) means?
The reason why you have neither quoted me nor refuted my arguments, but instead made all kinds of claims about me, is because you would rather believe that I said what you claim and that it's right to link to the ROI just because they can be described as Irish than actually prove it. QED. Tonyobrienuk 02:46, 18 August 2006 (UTC)
If you really feel that people are ignoring your points (although anyone who reads this section will see that they are not ignoring them, just not buying most of it), then i suggest you may be happier if you found something else to do with your time. Merbabu 04:12, 19 August 2006 (UTC)

'We are an Irish band. We come from Dublin City...'

If I go over to Britain in the morning and start working with a British company the company doesn't become Irish just because I'm with them. Granada Television is not Irish, even though Gerry Robinson from Donegal has been the principal cause of its rapid success. Similarly British Airways has not become Irish because Willie Walsh has taken over at the top. At any rate, a quick Google of "U2" and "We are an Irish band" reveals this remark by one Paul Hewson in the introduction to 'Bad': "We are an Irish band, we come from Dublin City, Ireland. As with all cities it has its good and it has its bad...this is a song called Bad..." That's that settled, then. El Gringo 13:19, 13 August 2006 (UTC)


I hope you don't mind me responding to both your edits together, because they're clearly making the same point.

Firstly, no, that's not as English as the band gets. That's not even as British as it gets. The Edge was not only born in the UK, but has British parents and has a British passport. He lives in the ROI, but only because British people have had the right to do so all this time. That is, him living in the ROI doesn't say anything about his nationality. His passport, parentage and place of birth, on the other hand, do, and they're all British.

As for your analogy of companies, I don't think it's particularly valid. A single employee, even the CEO, is a tiny proportion of the workforce of a company and, besides, different indicators are used to judge the nationality of a company than a band or an individual. Where they're based is far more important than the nationality their workforce, CEO or founder in this respect. A company can't hop on a plane or boat and go to another country never to return, unlike a person. There is also an issue of ownership and there are certain formal registration processes that tie them to certain countries. With a band, formally, you can only go by their citizenship, and in U2's case that's split between the UK and ROI.

Finally, your quote of Bono's doesn't prove anything about links to the ROI. I'm not contesting that they may describe themselves as Irish, but that the meaning of "Irish" in such a context is not "of the Republic of Ireland" but "of Ireland". What might be more telling than Bono calling U2 an Irish band is that he left it ambiguous by saying "Ireland" rather than "Republic of Ireland". I am fine with them being called an Irish band. However, when the loyalty of its members is split between the ROI and UK, linking to the ROI only is wrong for the reasons already given.

Anyone who brings up them being "Irish" again, when I've said God knows how many times that I'm not complaining about them being called Irish but with the word "Irish" having a link to the ROI, can only be assumed to be deliberately intransigent. Tonyobrienuk 15:28, 13 August 2006 (UTC)

There's no ambiquity about Ireland. It is the name of a country which occupies the entirety of an island between America and Europe. It is composed of 32 counties, six of which are currently under British occupation. The country is inhabitated by Irish people. Strangely enough, these people tend to describe themselves as Irish people from Ireland. The tautology implicit in this self-definition is designed to elucidate their identity for even the most cerebrally challenged of God's creatures. I trust this clarifies matters. El Gringo 16:05, 13 August 2006 (UTC)

Lol. Well there you go: your position is an extreme POV that the great majority of people reject. Even the articles you link disagree with your statements in their entirity. Tonyobrienuk 16:15, 13 August 2006 (UTC)

The "great majority" of people in your local Conservative and Unionist Party branch are of little concern to me, or to the rest of the civilised world. Meanwhile, in the real world, and as crazy as it sounds, Irish people continue to come from Ireland. Life doesn't get any more weird, eh. And here's a dictionary; use it, please use it: www.m-w.com. Thank you. El Gringo 17:06, 13 August 2006 (UTC)

It's not only the Conservative Party that disagrees with Northern Ireland being a part of the Republic of Ireland that's occupied by the UK. The great majority of the world disagrees, including countries with large populations of Irish people. No government recognises any claim of the Republic of Ireland to Northern Ireland, not even the Republic of Ireland itself. When I say "Ireland", I mean the subject of the Ireland article, believe it or not, not the Republic of Ireland, which has its own article and the distinction from which is the entire purpose of this discussion. There is no reason why anyone should pay any attention to your extreme fringe POV. Tonyobrienuk 17:14, 13 August 2006 (UTC)

I'm sorry for your troubles. Slán. El Gringo 17:21, 13 August 2006 (UTC)

Origin of name

While I'm here, I don't know why there's controversy about this. Surely some U2 fan (as in fanatic) could confirm the following. I heard Bono on TV years ago explaining the origin of the band's name. He said it means "the music that you too want to listen to'. Pompous nonsense, in my view. But that is, verbatim, what the man said. El Gringo 13:36, 13 August 2006 (UTC)

Quote from U2faqs.com. I think the "variety of connotations" would be the unemployment form being the reason for taking the name, followed by the U2 spy plane as a happy coincidence that gave it broader appeal, but there's no concrete evidence for that. The "you too" theory sounds like sentimental retroactivity rather than a plausible theory, but it's obviously still worth going with if it's verifiable. Tonyobrienuk 16:30, 13 August 2006 (UTC)

Just Curious

Have U2 ever actually played in Africa? I've been trying to think of all the bands that have toured all six continents, so far Bob Marley is the only one (and probably the first).

The last two shows of the Popmart Tour were in Johannesburg, so yes, they have. --McMillin24 contribstalk 13:09, 15 August 2006 (UTC)


I thought there were only 5 continents ? ( Americas, Europe, Asia, Africa and Australia / Oceania ) Some would argue however that there is 7 continents. If so you can add South America ( North America and South America are two different continents in this case ) and Antarctica.

There must be many bands who has toured all continents. Norwegian rock band a-ha for instance, has toured Europe, Africa, Asia, South America, North America and Australia ( Mortyman )

I don't know off hand, but what about Queen? They controversially played South Africa (Sun City). They did a massive show in Rio. They've toured Europe often, of course. Dunno about Down Under and North America but I'd guess so... --kingboyk 15:29, 21 September 2006 (UTC)

language usage

Because Wikipedia is contributed to worldwide by users who use a wide variety of types of English and dating, Wikipedia adopted a simple rule for content.

  • Where an article is about a topic from a country that uses one particular type of English, and one system of dating, that country's system should be used in that article.

In the case of U2, as the band is Irish, that means that the article has to use

  • Hiberno-English (which in effect is a branch of International English, and
  • International Dating.

International English is largely based on British English so it means that in effect this article should not use American English spelling and grammar.

International Dating takes the form dd/mm/yyyy, unlike American Dating, which uses mm/dd/yyyy, or ISO which uses yyyy/mm/dd. As it is an Irish topic this article has to use dates in the form 2 April 1970 (with no comma) not April 2, 1970 which is called American dating.

Finally, footnotes follow standard grammatical rules. That means that at the end of the sentence they come after, not before, a full stop or comma. So the reference should be written as text.<ref>footnote text</ref> not text<ref>footnote text</ref>. FearÉIREANNIreland-up.png\(caint) 20:03, 20 August 2006 (UTC)

Next album section

THis section is a mess. Way too long, rambles with insignificant, speculative and unreferenced statements. Personally, i think the value of its inclusion at all in an encyclopedia is dubious given it's speculative nature. I recommend:

Shortening it - pull out irrelevant info, and re-write any remaining info more succintly.
Remove narrative tone
Remove anything that can't be directly referenced
Chop long quotes.
Put some order into the sequence - suggest chronological

--Merbabu 23:02, 14 September 2006 (UTC)

Recent (long overdue) "chopping"

The recent edits are generally excellent and long overdue. Kudos to Painbearer. I have some comments though...
  • There are a few edits i don't quite agree with - i will put them back with reasoning for consideration, or better still, re-write them differently to hopefully solve the problem you identified. Eg, i might put a 1-sentence mention of the Apple/iPod deal - the contribs show that it was a battle to keep this section down to even its recent bloated size!! I certainly won't reinstate the seperate section. But these are a minority - most edits i agree with.
  • There is indeed too much detail in the article - but much of what you have removed (well done) does have a place in other articles (tours, albums, etc). We should work to make sure of the chopped info, the "good bits" find their way into these specific articles.
  • I will reinstate the split between War and Unforgettable Fire. These are considered 2 very distinct phases of U2. If anything, War belongs with Boy and October and UF with Joshua Tree and R & H.
  • The formation date of the band is 1976. Any reason why you mentioned 1978? Was that the year of the name "U2" coming into existance? Either way, 1976 is the generally accepted date as it was when the four existing members first played together even if there was 1 or 2 extras that didn't last long.
Excellent work. --Merbabu 23:14, 11 October 2006 (UTC)

Glad to be at hand. Anyways, probably some of this information needn't to be scrapped. I think that some of the Other projects paragraph can be really used into individual bandmembers pages. The tour and album info also should be put into the respective pages. I put 1978 because I think this was the year, when they actually signed contract and started producing music under that particular moniker and undertook the career of professional musicians. That was my point for putting it.

Anyways, I think that's... really an article. It was a mess before, now it looks more like a... full-fledged and potential article. Still some work to do (some other time, as it's time to sleep) but yet again I think we are on the right way. Glad to be on board:

Regards: Painbearer 23:30, 11 October 2006 (UTC)
I second Merbabu's opinion, great work on cleaning it up and making it more concise. I'm sorry to see the album covers go, but I guess they have to. I really wish we could get (fan) pictures from the tours. I have some close-up ones from the Elevation tour that I took from the floor, but they're not too good quality, and besides it would be better to get other tour pictures in. In any case, I'll try to add some citations in that are missing (which reminds me, good job on cleaning up among others, the citations that I added in -- I was too lazy to format them correctly, especially the ones from u2.com!). Wikipedia brown 03:49, 17 October 2006 (UTC)
Somewhere packed away in boxes i have some pics of The Fly and MacPhisto that I took from near the B-stage in Sydney 1993. One day i will find them and scan them in. Only two came out 1/2 decent though. (yes, my face is in the famous video - during Angel, Stay, Running, and WOWY :-) ) --Merbabu 04:27, 17 October 2006 (UTC)

U2 a "Christian Band"?

The category Category:Christian musical groups has been placed on this page. I removed it but the editor who placed it there insists U2 is a "Christian Band". This is incorrect:

  • There is big difference between a band that has members identifying that they believe certain beliefs associated with Christianity, and a religious band who's purpose (the band's purpose, not the individuals') is to promote Christianity and worship, etc. U2 are certainly the former. That category lists the latter.
  • U2 themselves have often said they are not a "Christian Band"
  • I opened about a dozen of the other musical groups in that category and every article is about a group that PREDOMINANLTY writes about Christianity and associated beliefs, praise, etc, or one that exists PREDOMINANTLY to promote Christianity - U2 is neither of these.
  • What about Van Morrison, Midnight Oil, Bob Marley, Bob Dylan - they had/have Christian beliefs which like U2 was on occasion put in their music? No, it wouldn't make sense would it - neither does U2.
  • As for the editor's reasoning:
  • "yes, it does." [[mean that 3 members with Christian beliefs means U2 are a "Christian Band"]] "have you ever heard 'I still haven't found what I'm looking for'? What about 'I Will Follow'? They are a Christain band"
These are just references, usually vague, to their beliefs. OFten they are how they FEEL about their beliefs which is often confusion (see Wake Up Dead Man), certainly not promoting it, or involved in any over Christian "Praise". THe references are arguably few in number and are not the PREDOMINANT theme throughout their music.
  • In reply to " But the band itself is not a Christian entity there to promote Christianity": "I beg to differ. Their songs are often Christain in nature, and the band members themselves are Christain".
They do not promote Christianity as the rest of that category does. Song references, often of discouraged faith, do make a Christian Band to spread Christianity. To suggest otherwise, shows a shallow knowledge and understanding of the band's music which numbers 100s of songs.

What do others think? --Merbabu 04:25, 14 October 2006 (UTC)

UPDATE: The article Christian Rock mentions U2 and others with openly Christian(-like) beliefs - but suggests this is an incorrect categorisation. U2 and the others mentioned are not listed on any of the appropriate Christian rock or music cats. Some artists such as U2, Lifehouse, Creed, Sufjan Stevens, King's X, Thrice, Evanescence, Mute Math, Coldplay, Blessid Union of Souls, and Switchfoot do not claim to be "Christian bands", but include members who openly profess to be Christians and feature Christian thought, imagery, scripture or other influences in their music. There is a tendency among some Christian rock music fans to label rock music bands as Christian where their lyrics are seen as consistent with the fans' understanding of Christian belief, but this is generally not accepted by the contemporary Christian music industry. --Merbabu 04:34, 14 October 2006 (UTC)

I think the Christian Rock article makes it very clear. U2 does not belong to that category. And, while we're at it, I don't think U2 is a Celtic Fusion band either. --Kristbg 04:42, 14 October 2006 (UTC)
Yes, i noticed that Celtic Fusion thing too. "very strange indeed" --Merbabu 04:50, 14 October 2006 (UTC)
If it means anything, Bono said in his book with Michka Assayas that all four are Believers now, which would make them a "Christian musical group", if only because the group is Christian but not necessarily all of the music. Just an opinion. Jvd897 14:30, 14 October 2006 (UTC)
Christian group, or group of Christians? There is a difference. :-) --Merbabu 15:14, 14 October 2006 (UTC)
What I was trying to say is that I think there's a difference between "Christian musical group" and the aforementioned Christian Rock. (As I, too, believe the latter isn't the correct classification, as discussed above.) Cheers. --Jvd897 19:53, 14 October 2006 (UTC)


What the fuck?

Painbearer 11:33, 14 October 2006 (UTC)
can we take that as disagreement with the category - or perhaps a suggested new song title? --Merbabu 11:38, 14 October 2006 (UTC)

U2 - Christian rock band? The band of Eric Cartman Faith+1 is a Christian rock band. Not U2.

Painbearer 07:54, 27 October 2006 (UTC)

Bono talks RELIGION

STRAIGHT FROM THE HORSE'S MOUTH:

...and? --Merbabu 07:59, 27 October 2006 (UTC)



The discussion above is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.