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"Anyone can be trashy and flashy. To be transcendent, you have to connect emotionally, and it has to be beautiful. Stadium concerts can be a Neanderthal experience. If we expect people to come, we've got to create the greatest show on Earth." — Bono

Celebrating Adam Clayton's 60th Birthday

60 Reasons We Love Adam. Share Your Adam Love on the U2.com Live From Berlin Streaming Event
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Adam Clayton 2018 concert 1200px

It’s two great days in a row for U2: Adam Clayton’s 60th birthday (March 13) and the band’s first-ever streaming of a live film for U2.com subscribers is today.

The streaming event begins at 9 p.m GMT today and participants are encouraged to share photos, videos and stories about Adam. Read this for more information abut the streaming event. 

U2 would not be the same without Adam Clayton. He’s the coolest guy in the band, and certainly the most stylish. He has grown from a self-assured boy to a confident man over the decades and, much to fans’ delight, he’s not afraid to be himself. Below are 60 reasons we love Adam. 

 

  1. His affinity for the perfect cup of tea.
  1. His recovery from addiction.
  1. His incredible support of the Walk in My Shoes charity (he’s the key ambassador of the organization) to help destigamatize mental health issues for boys and men.
  1. His openness about the importance of mental health.
  1. His electric smile.
  1. Posing as Adam on “Achtung Baby.”
  1. Dressing in drag more than once – for “Achtung Baby” and as Betty Dalton.
  1. His hair game over the years: the blond afro, mohawk, buzz cut, a short cut that he dyed black and now a bouffant of beautiful silver hair.
  1. His ease with growing into himself over the decades.
  1. He waited for his true love and married at the age of 53.
  1. Wearing his kimonos after shows, complete with slippers and making it look cool.
  1. His stance when he plays that bass, low and cool.
  1. His playfulness with fans and willingness to sign autographs and take selfies and laugh while he’s at it.
  1. He put a sticker of Pink Adam on the back of his wonderful sparkly purple guitar. The Pink Adam stickers were created by a Los Angeles artist who donates the funds to help the homeless.
  1. He taught himself how to play the bass guitar.
  1. All of those amazing tee shirts he wore on the iNNOCENCE + eXPERIENCE Tour.
  1. He bought an acoustic guitar and took some classical guitar lessons and this sparked his interest in playing the bass guitar.
  1. When he asked his parents to buy him his first bass guitar in 1974, he told them “I’ll play ‘til I’m bigger than the Beatles!”
  1. That first nickname of Sparky.
  1. That afghan coat he wore in the early days.
  1. He was Bono’s best man at Bono and Ali’s wedding.
  1. His love of all things art.
  1. After he was asked to leave school, Adam was U2’s first manager. He organized gigs and created relationships with other musicians and the media. His card read “Phone Adam Clayton to book U2.”
  1. Through his relationship with Steve Averill, Adam chose the band’s name that would stick: U2.
  1. He and Edge developed one of the band’s first original songs “Street Missions."
  1. Adam’s persistence with Hot Press writer Bill Graham resulted in their first feature story in a major music magazine. And, it was the start of a lifelong relationship with Graham that not only resulted on numerous stories, but a book and more.
  2. He had a short-lived driving career before the band started earning money. He delivered china tea sets using a VW van.
  1. He drove across the American southwest with Bono, from Los Angeles to New Orleans. This became the inspiration for Rattle and Hum.
  1. His sense of style.
  1. The way he breaks the tension on “Your Blue Room” by reciting the final verse.
  1. The jeans he wore in the late 70’s, and how well he wore them.
  1. His ever-so-slight lisp.
  1. His arrogant/confrontational expression in some of the early band photos.
  1. His well-documented teenage rebellion.
  1. The fact that he stood in front of Bono in the face of a credible Joshua Tree era death threat.
  1. The way he kept his eye on this fan  (at 5:00) and kept keeping his eye on him.
  1. His attendance at the Global Climate Strike with his wife and daughter.
  1. This quote: “There are people who say you shouldn’t mix music and politics, or sport and politics, or whatever, but I think that’s kind of bullshit.”
  1. This quote: “I still think that Bono and Larry and Edge are the most fascinating people in my life. They constantly surprise me in terms of their insight, their development, their intelligence. When you find people like that, you hang onto them.”
  1. The bass on “New Year’s Day.”
  1. The bass on “With Or Without You.”
  1. The bass on “Bullet The Blue Sky."
  2. The bass on “So Cruel.”
  1. His humility.
  1. On his band and its longevity: “We won’t let each other fail.”
  1. On playing in Sarajevo in 1993: “If you believe in a cause, you must be willing to put yourself on the line for that cause.”
  1. The remake of “Mission Impossible” he made with Larry Mullen, Jr.
  2. His camo pants and combat boots.
  3. All of his stylish and unique jackets and coats.
  4. “Mysterious Ways” was built around Adam’s bass line.
  5. He’s the best-looking girl in the “One” video.
  6. He has no qualms about kissing Bono full on the lips.
  7. Or allowing Bono to otherwise hug, hold and hang all over him.
  8. He’ s the one and only Pop Tart.
  9. The sequins, sparkles and bangles of the 360 Tour.
  10. “Drowning Man.”
  11. “Two Hearts Beat as One.”
  12. “Adam looked as if he knew exactly what he was doing. I wasn’t really looking at it from a musical point of view at all - I just thought he looked like a proper bass player.” -Paul McGuinness on  Adam, after seeing U2 play for the first time.
  13. “Adam was bringing a lot of panache to the proceedings, and he was starting to produce a really great bass sound, even though he was a very eccentric bass player. He could play really complicated things easily and then be unable to clap in time and you’d be left just scratching your head.” - Bono.
  14. The way he and Larry work together on stage to keep the show moving when Bono is off doing his thing.
  15. And, last but not least, this quote: “Men should not be forced to wear pants when it’s not cold.”

 

© Myers, DeGenaro, Maione / @U2, 2020