Billie Joe Armstrong (Green Day): "Punk is not just the sound, the music. Punk is a life-style. There are a lot of bands around who claim to be punk and they only play the music, they have no clue what it's all about. It's a lifestyle I choose."





* * *


Bono: U2 free album delivery was 'punk rock', now I'll save the music industry

Peter Vincent, Sydney Morning Herald, September 19, 2014

[Photo: Having given 500 million iTunes users the gift of his band's new album Bono wants to save the music industry.]


- Stop whingeing and delete if you don't like U2 album
- How to delete free U2 album
- U2 album strategy an epic marketing fail

U2's charismatic frontman Bono has defended Apple's controversial spam-like delivery of the band's 13th album to 500 million iTune users in 119 countries as a "punk rock" and says it worked because it irritated people and got noticed.

Now Bono has told Time magazine that he's working with Apple on an even bigger project: a new file format that could save the music industry. The band's 14th album will be delivered on the new format.
Unwanted: Apple CEO Tim Cook and U2 singer Bono before the controversial album launch.

[Photo: Unwanted: Apple CEO Tim Cook and U2 singer Bono before the controversial album launch. Photo: Getty Images]

He told Time: "[it will be] an audiovisual interactive format for music that can't be pirated and will bring back album artwork in the most powerful way, where you can play with the lyrics and get behind the songs when you're sitting on the subway with your iPad or on these big flat screens. You can see photography like you've never seen it before."

Speaking earlier to BBC2 presenter Jo Whiley, Bono said he wanted to deliver Songs of Innocence to users whether they wanted it or not was because he considered it U2's job to "stir things up a bit".

"That was kind of why you got into a band, to stir things up and annoy people," Bono said. "That's the whole punk rock thing... the only thing that could have gone wrong would have been being ignored."

The upload, which happened worldwide last Wednesday, was far from ignored. The album has been played 38 million times (although that includes any playback) and drew a huge polarising response, especially in social and conventional media.

It was derided by several high-profile figures including rapper Tyler the Creator and celebrity Sharon Osbourne while Jimmy Kimmel ran a segment on his hit TV show in which the band Fall Out Boy helped passersby delete the album. Several music industry figures and commentators panned it as devaluing music and others speculated the band's brand could be damaged. called U2 "the most hated band in America".

Writing on, Nico Lang called U2 "the new Nickelback", which is about as uncool a comparison as is possible.

Kimmel noted the irony of people being upset by the gift of legal music when so many people were downloading music illegally: "poor Bono's weird sunglasses are soaked with tears right now".

Purists might disagree the album launch was punk because the band was paid a large (but unspecified) sum and will benefit from an Apple marketing campaign worth an estimated $US100 million ($112 million). But by many punk definitions Bono is right: the strategy was U2 and Apple doing what they wanted against many people's wishes with chaotic results. Not that his latest claim has earned new fans. Steve Conte, former lead guitarist for The New York Dolls called the album release "corporate rock".

Apple did however then perform a not-very-punk damage limitation move by creating a tool to explain to iTunes users how they could delete the album.

But whether it lived up to the standards of what punk is according to one of the genre's great tragic martyrs - The Sex Pistols' Sid Vicious - is for you to decide. Vicious advised: "Undermine their pompous authority, reject their moral standards, make anarchy and disorder your trademarks. Cause as much chaos and disruption as possible but don't let them take you alive."

Poll: Was delivering a free U2 album to 500 million iTunes users without permission (and getting paid US$100m for it) a "punk" thing to do?

Yes: 25%
No: 75%

Total votes: 2445.

Disclaimer: These polls are not scientific. [Wow! Thanks for clearing that up!]


- While punk is misused so much nowadays and I just scream when I hear a pop band called punk one of the indisputable facts is the ideological viewpoint of punk being 'anti-establishment". I think working with Apple discounts any notion of this.

- I think "sell out" is the term you are looking for.

- So now he's going to save the music industry. Has he made poverty history yet?

- Yeah I really hate that Bono. How dare was give his time, money & energy to make a difference to kids & families in Africa suffering thru severe poverty. He's just the worst.

- It is very difficult to argue that you are punk when you've accepted a bucketload of cash to jump in to bed with one of the largest corporate entities around.

- Ever get the feeling you've been cheated?

- swindle?

- Shame he only wants to save the music industry, not music.

Apple CEO Tim Cook: 'I'm proud to be gay'

Brett Molina, USA TODAY, October 30, 2014

Apple CEO Tim Cook publicly confirmed he is gay in an opinion piece, making him the highest-profile chief executive to come out. Though there have been rumors about his sexuality, Cook explains why he decided to publicly acknowledge it.

Apple CEO Tim Cook publicly confirmed he is gay in an opinion piece published Thursday, making him the highest-profile chief executive to come out.

In an essay published by Bloomberg Businessweek advocating for human rights and equality, Cook says he was inspired by Dr. Martin Luther King to set aside his desire for privacy to do something "more important."

"While I have never denied my sexuality, I haven't publicly acknowledged it either, until now," writes Cook. "So let me be clear: I'm proud to be gay, and I consider being gay among the greatest gifts God has given me."

Cook becomes the first openly gay CEO of a Fortune 500 company, according to gays rights group Human Rights Campaign, who applauded the Apple chief's essay.

"Tim Cook's announcement today will save countless lives," says HRC President Chad Griffin. "He has always been a role model, but today millions across the globe will draw inspiration from a different aspect of his life."

Cook says he's been open with others about being gay, but felt compelled to publicly come out to help others. "I don't consider myself an activist, but I realize how much I've benefited from the sacrifice of others," writes Cook. "So if hearing that the CEO of Apple is gay can help someone struggling to come to terms with who he or she is, or bring comfort to anyone who feels alone, or inspire people to insist on their equality, then it's worth the trade-off with my own privacy."

Reaction has been mostly positive. On Twitter, Apple's chief of global marketing, Philip Schiller, showed support for Cook. "Proud to work for you and be your friend," Schiller said.

Sarah Kate Ellis, president and CEO of GLAAD, applauded Cook and Apple's "long history" in demanding equality. "It is a game changer for corporate America," says Ellis. "He set the example for inclusion."

Public confirmations of sexuality have increased in Hollywood, and have started to appear in the sports world, including football player Michael Sam, who came out right before this year's NFL Draft. But it's rare to see in the business world, which makes the revelation by Cook -- head of one of the world's most profitable companies -- a much bigger deal.

"This serves as an opening of the door for other CEOs, senior-level managers, senior-level executives to say I'm ready to bring my authentic self to the office and I know now that it's not potentially a detriment, it's an asset to be out and proud in the workplace," says Justin Nelson, co-founder and president of the National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce.

Apple has been among the top American companies for embracing equality. Fred Sainz, vice president of communications at HRC, says Apple has achieved the top rating in their Corporate Equality Index every year since it was introduced in 2002.

But Sainz notes it will be important to watch how Cook addresses equality now that's he's publicly revealed his sexuality. "What we'll be interested to see is how he now uses his platform as the CEO of one of the world's most prominent companies to further advance equality and justice for people across the world."

Cook's piece published days after the Apple CEO criticized his home state of Alabama over gay rights. "We can't change the past, but we can learn from it, and we can create a different future," said Cook.

This is not the first time Cook's sexuality has been addressed. In June, CNBC hosted a segment on gay CEOs where one host seemed to out Cook as gay. "I think Tim Cook is fairly open about the fact that he is gay at the head of Apple, isn't he?" said Squawk on the Street co-host Simon Hobbs, causing an awkward silence. Hobbs quickly followed with "Oh dear, was that an error?"

During Friday's 'Squawk on the Street', CNBC host Simon Hobbs potentially outed Apple CEO Tim Cook in a discussion about gay CEOs of major companies. VPC

Cook says the decision to reveal his sexuality was difficult, and hopes people focus more on his efforts running the tech giant. "I'm an engineer, an uncle, a nature lover, a fitness nut, a son of the South, a sports fanatic, and many other things. I hope that people will respect my desire to focus on the things I'm best suited for and the work that brings me joy."

The CEO also says he will continue to advocate for human rights and equality. "We pave the sunlit path toward justice together, brick by brick. This is my brick."

Post a comment

Private comment


And people say that I can't sing and that I'm dirty!

Re: Wow

Listen up, bitch! The critics have spoken: I'm an Artist, so I don't have to "sing", or make sense.

Re: "I'm an Artist"

Is that why you have to paint your ugly dyke face like a halloween clown mask?

Junk Mail

U2 - Songs of Innocence (Island, 2014)

Review by Rob Mitchum

U2 being U2, they've aligned with their old friends Apple to insert their new album, Songs of Innocence, into all of our libraries without consent.

That U2 would willingly play corporate house band at a watch announcement to achieve this rollout in 2014 surprises exactly nobody; the album release was even framed by Bono himself as the 10th-anniversary celebration of a commercial. But the insistent mode of distribution says a lot about the band’s addiction to attention in their 38th year. “Part of the DNA of this band has always been the desire to get our music to as many people as possible,” Bono wrote, and after the commercial squib of 2009’s gloomy No Line on the Horizon, everything about Songs of Innocence seems desperate to be the global, cultural “experience” fix U2 needs to survive, even if it means giving away the album for “free.”

Accordingly, the music itself aims for a one-size-fits-all, vaguely inspirational tone, with a lean approach to details despite the press kit assertion that it’s all “very, very personal.” So a song about Bono meeting his wife is given the non-committal title of “Song for Someone”, and a song called “The Troubles” isn’t a callback to the prolonged Northern Ireland conflict that inspired their first great song, but a bunch of self-pitying platitudes (which uses guest Lykke Li to mimic adult-contempo Duran Duran hit “Come Undone”). Even Bono’s opening love letter to Joey Ramone is only given specificity by the title’s parenthetical, a generic “last night a [fill-in-the-blank] changed my life” tale that could be adapted to the idol of your choosing. It’s all emotional content left intentionally formless, vaingloriously hoping to fit around the experiences of millions.

On Songs of Innocence U2 risk causing a temporal paradox by swiping moves from mantle-carriers Arcade Fire and Coldplay, akin to time traveling to the future and sleeping with your own grandchild.

A few promisingly weird moments, such as the eerily synthetic Beach Boys chant at the start of “California (There Is No End to Love)” or the breathy rhythms of “Raised By Wolves”, are quickly diluted by stock verse/chorus structures. The watery disco-punk beats of “This Is Where You Can Reach Me Now” and “Volcano” are thin gruel for a band that once seemed aware of current pop trends, however ill-advised the attempts were to engage with them. Only “Sleep Like a Baby Tonight” manages to feel fresh from start to finish, with burbling synths and pillowy strings occasionally disrupted by the Edge at his fuzziest-sounding. Elsewhere, there seems to be barely any resistance to the gravity of doing what a U2 song is supposed to do and little else.

That gravity has a name, and it’s four letters long, and at this point even those letters are wearing sunglasses. The two brief moments where Bono drops his global-rock-ambassador persona—the deranged, filtered first note of the “Raised by Wolves” chorus, the brief return of the “Lemon” falsetto on “Sleep Like a Baby Tonight”—are jarring enough to expose just how overblown his crooning is on Songs of Innocence. While the album’s liner notes contain a moving, train-of-thought reflection on a childhood made up of witnessing car bombings and sneaking into Ramones shows, almost none of that insight makes it into the actual songs, which are a celebration of self-absorption: “You are rock and roll” quickly amended to “You and I are rock and roll.”

Perhaps the upcoming companion album, inevitably named Songs of Experience, will contain all the darker, cynical stuff from these sessions. Regardless, U2 have already squandered any remaining integrity to invent this needy, invasive breed of the Big Event Album, an Album that lacks any kind of artistic statement to deter from the overwhelming Brandiness. Where Beyoncé used her iTunes sneak attack late last year to make a bold pop proclamation of sexuality and feminism, U2 have used an even more audacious release platform to wave their arms and simply say, “Hey! Everybody! We’re still here!” Bono may have self-deprecatingly described Songs of Innocence as “the blood, sweat and tears of some Irish your junk mail,” but it’s not even that interesting—it’s just a blank message.

Bozo bows to Fruit fruit




Search form
Latest Journals
Latest comments
Monthly archive
Friend Request Form

Want to be friends with this user.