"Maybe that is the step forward on this record, to be able to have the freedom to have humour sitting alongside songs that are deadly earnest, and the two actually balance out each other."
-- Edge, on All That You Can't Leave Behind
Surprise! Red-Hot Rockers U2 REALLY Are Squares
Band Hates, Drugs, Takes Wives & Moms on Tour & Read Bible Backstage
The National Enquirer,
December 01, 1988
In an age of bad-boy rock bands, supergroup U2 is almost too good to be true -- the members condemn drugs, rarely drink, wave off groupies, read the Bible backstage...and frequently bring their wives and mothers along on tour!
"Most fathers would cringe if their daughter brought home a rock 'n' roller -- but as unbelievable as it sounds, U2 are the kind of men a father WANTS his daughter with," said a source who's toured with the four-member band.
The "Mr. Cleans" of rock are drummer Larry Mullen Jr., bass player Adam Clayton, lead singer Paul Hewson -- known as "Bono" -- and guitarist Dave "the Edge" Evans.
Throughout the 1980s they've been one of the hottest groups in rock. Their recent album Rattle and Hum rocketed to No. 1 on the charts -- the first double album to perform that feat since Bruce Springsteen's did in 1980.
Despite their awesome success, U2 grew up in modest surroundings in Dublin, Ireland -- and never forgot their humble roots. Bono married his high school sweetheart. Edge is also married and the doting dad of two daughters. Adam lets his mom comb his hair when she visits backstage. And Larry personally checks the souvenir stands before each concert to make sure vendors are selling quality goods at reasonable prices.
"The band members don't care about being considered square. They don't hide the fact that they're opposed to alcohol and drug use."
"Bono told me about one night at Arizona State University when actor Charlie Sheen came backstage. He said, 'Sheen asked me how we are able to do the things we do musically. Well, I told him the first thing we do is stay away from that stuff -- nodding to a drink he was holding.
"I told him you can either get it together with your work and creativity, or you get it on with that stuff. But you can't do both!
"It was interesting -- because Charlie put his drink down as we spoke, and he didn't pick it up again.' "
Now Sheen credits his chat with Bono as the turning point in his drinking -- he now limits himself to a few beers a week.
"I was there when the band made their recent concert movie and they found out a couple of guys on the set were using cocaine," recalled another source.
"They told the producers to get the offenders off the set and never let them back.
"It was same with the groupies, the girls who hang around rock musicians. The guys in U2 aren't interested.
"Adam Clayton told me, 'Our families are with us because they're so important to each of us -- we would never allow anything to happen that would embarrass them.' "
Said the source who toured with U2: "I'll never forget watching them backstage at a rock festival -- it was a madhouse with all kinds of big-name rockers. There was more drugs and booze in that backstage area than I've ever seen in one place.
"Well, right in the middle of it all, there's Larry, Bono and Edge reading their Bibles!"
© 1988 National Enquirer. All rights reserved.