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"I think all this thing about plastic surgery and pop stars obsessed with the way they look . . . they're kinda cuttin' bits off themselves, you know."

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Column: off the record...,vol. 9-437

@U2, November 21, 2010
By: Tassoula E. Kokkoris


off the record, from @U2

So, is anyone else in North America bolting out of bed on Nov. 26 to get the U2 release, Wide Awake in Europe? I sure will. It's been a long time since I worried that a record store would run out of U2 goodies before I arrived, but in this case I think an alarm clock set to "early" is prudent. Call me crazy, but I really dig this sort of thing. I like a little excitement in my holiday season.

To me, everyone being forced to visit a physical store (and support independent record stores by default) is a good thing. I'll admit that I love the convenience of online shopping, but there really is nothing that compares to the camaraderie of a group of people with one common goal gathering in one place for one purpose.

I'm certain I'll be in good company on Black Friday and I look forward to the rush of pulling a new U2 product off the display shelf and sprinting to the cash register to buy it.

Daniel Lanois is recovering nicely from his motorcycle accident in June and has returned to performing with his band Black Dub. To kick off their eight-city tour, he's made several recent media appearances, including acting as a guest DJ on NPR and speaking to Rolling Stone about his new autobiography Soul Mining and U2's album No Line on the Horizon

It's great to see the famed producer back in action, resuming his career and looking to the future. Watch @U2 in the coming weeks for a review of Soul Mining and further updates on his comeback.

Peter Rowen, the boy featured on the cover of the Boy and War albums, has made a name for himself as an acclaimed photographer in Ireland. Last year, he was honored as the Weddings Online "Wedding Photographer of the Year" and it was recently announced that he is up for the title again this year. If you'd like to vote for Peter, click here. To view his website and see samples of his work, follow this link.

I'll be the first to admit I was late to the party getting an iPhone. I had to wait until a number of respected friends had one (and liked it), the price came down and my old carrier ticked me off to the point of no return. That day came last summer and I can't get enough of my no-longer-new toy. One of the apps I find myself using most is our own @U2 app, which keeps me up to date on all of the latest news and blog posts when I'm away from my computer. If you're an iPhone user and haven't checked it out, I recommend downloading it at your earliest convenience. Best of all, it's free!

A lovely way to connect with other U2 fans is by participating in the U2 Fan Christmas/Holiday card exchange. If you'd like to join in the fun, click here for instructions. But don't delay -- the deadline for submitting your information is Dec. 9.

Happy holidays!

© @U2/Kokkoris, 2010.

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