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Monday 11 December 2017

U2 rename music festival Bono-roo amid first headline appearance in US

The Edge, left, and Bono of U2 perform at the Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival (Amy Harris/Invision/AP)
The Edge, left, and Bono of U2 perform at the Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival (Amy Harris/Invision/AP)

Irish rock stars U2 have turned their first headlining appearance at a US music festival into Bono-roo.

They performed a two-hour set on Friday night at the Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival in Manchester, Tennessee.

It is part of a world tour celebrating the 30th anniversary of their award-winning The Joshua Tree album.

They played the full album, as well as other hits including New Year's Day and Beautiful Day, to tens of thousands of music fans.

Towards the end of the performance, lead singer Bono asked if they had made a mistake in not coming to the festival sooner.

He later added: "Thanks for naming it after me."

The band kicked off their tour last month in Canada and it will also hit the UK, Europe and Central America.

The band has previously played the Glastonbury Festival, but their appearance on the Bonnaroo lineup this year was a huge coup for the 16-year-old music festival.

Prior to their set, U2 guitarist The Edge received the Les Paul Spirit Award in a presentation on the festival grounds.

The Edge, real name David Evans, said Paul was an inventor and innovator who pioneered advances in electric guitars and recording.

"I owe him a great debt of gratitude not only for the contributions he made to music, but in terms of his contributions to the technology," he said.

Hours before the band took to the stage, fans lined up to get a place close to it. Many held signs detailing the first time they had seen U2 play.

The political nature of the album, which was inspired by the band's fascination with America, was reflected on the giant screens behind them.

They showed images of female activists, scenes of the American desert and poems from US writers.

Often Bono would stop singing to let the chorus of voices from fans complete the song.

As he ended the performance with their hit One, he said it was "a night we will never forget".


Press Association

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