Post a day 2011: Stranded with U2’s War

As if I needed more things to shove on my overloaded plate, I decided to take WordPress up on their challenge to post at least once a day in 2011. So far, so good. And as usual, I’ve been over-achieving. (I’ve already posted today)

While I’ve not usually blogged on their suggested topic as they don’t often apply to my blog topic, this one, about music, I couldn’t resist. It sucked me right in – a black hole topic.

Many of you who follow me on Twitter know that I’m a nut about my music. I have very eccentric taste…. all over the map. I listen to everything from Dr. Dre to Bjork to Shania Twain to Red Hot Chili Peppers to Cree Summer to Incubus to Pharcyde to Shakira to Flo Rida to Pitbull to Vieux Farka Toure to Sting to The Eagles to Jesse Cook to The Fugees to Big Pun to The Roots to Alicia Keys to The Fray to Sublime to No Doubt to 311 to Brandon Heath to Chris Tomlin to Sheila Walsh to Amy Grant … to U2.

U2 is a band very close to my heart.

I have been listening to them since I was knee high to a grasshopper.

All through my childhood, U2 was one of the few non-christian bands allowed in our house. I say non-christian but even then, three of the four members of U2 were dedicated Christian men.

My father and I listened to U2 for hours on end. We bonded over Boy, War, U2 live at Red Rocks recorded on Beta Max. (Yes, I am THAT old.)

I remember the crackling of the records playing, the way it would burst into the guitar riffs, Bono’s voice, and Larry’s drumming.

Just four men from Ireland who didn’t have a damn clue about music.

Today’s topic asked: If stranded on a desert island, and could only bring one music album with you, which would it be? What is it about this music that never gets old for you?

War. by U2. Hands down.

Why? Because it brings back such warm childhood memories. I lost a lot of relatives when I was younger. I would go in my room, turn on U2, and everything would be okay as I lost myself in their soulful rock. U2 WAS my solace.

In college, my dad and I finally made it to a concert in Anderson, SC. We literally met up on the road as he road his motorcycle down from VA and I drove up from Georgia. We had a blast. Rage Against the Machine opened for them – a band I had not really known until I saw them live. And man – that night? I also became a Rage fan. At the U2 concert? I was THAT fan. I cried. Dammit people – I cried. I am SO not like that … or so I thought. Until I saw them a few years later in Atlanta, again, with my father. And I went and cried again. Clearly, I AM that fan. I’m still quantifying that with myself. I will say that in Atlanta, I felt totally screwed. PJ Harvey was supposed to open. She didn’t. Nelly Furtado did. Live? She sucks. She has grown on me since then but ahem. I digress.

For me, U2 has strong family ties. U2 is solace. U2 has existed for not much longer than I have been alive. I have grown up with them intertwined with my life. But the one album I keep going back to is War. For me, it’s a definitive album. It’s the album when U2 burst forth from their shell and really grew their wings into a sense of self. They found confidence and have yet to let it go.

I leave you with my favorite song from the album, Seconds.


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