Column: off the record…, vol. 11-492

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off the record, from @U2


I can't believe Christmas is only two weeks away. It seems like just yesterday I was figuring out how to see more shows on the 360 tour when it came back through North America last summer. I managed to see U2 in Chicago and was blown away by the new songs in the set, and by the surprise appearance of One Tree Hill. That's also where I met fellow new @U2 staffers Jill Marino and Jessica Guadiana, an added bonus to an already great experience!

If anyone would have told me at the beginning of this year I'd be on the @U2 staff, I don't think I would have believed it. I first discovered @U2 around 2000 and was thrilled to find other fans like me. So when Matt issued the call for applications, I didn't think twice about throwing my hat in the ring. I've endured difficult personal losses this year, so being part of this staff has not only fulfilled a need to express myself about the band, it also has provided me with a source of comfort and belonging that has helped me to heal. I am so grateful to be here!

Speaking of Christmas, there's still time to find many U2-themed gifts for your loved ones, or yourself! Certainly, the Achtung Baby 20th anniversary box sets would be a nice addition to anyone's collection. I did a quick search and came up with a few other ideas including a set of Joshua Tree coffee mugs, the official U2 2012 calendar with behind-the-scenes photos of the 360 tour, a onesie with pictures of the band members, a two-disc greatest hits karaoke set, and even an Achtung Baby cardboard promo display. So get online and go shopping!

Can Lady Gaga beat U2's touring record? According to The Sun, Lady Gaga is set to announce an ambitious world tour that would kick off in Asia and India next year and she reportedly plans to shatter U2’s record by playing 450 shows over two years. Perhaps she should check in with the band first to get their input on how to succeed in such a grand scheme.

Do you fancy owning your own Trabant? Well, now's your chance., to celebrate the 20th anniversary edition of Achtung Baby, is inviting artists to submit photographs or artwork to feature on the sleeve of Achtung Baby -- if it was being released today. Fifteen images will be selected for the final collage. All winners will receive a collage, box set and digital camera. One overall winner will receive an Achtung Baby-inspired Trabant. See details here.

Finally, as part of our celebration of the 20th anniversary of Achtung Baby, I had the pleasure of talking with artist and film director Catherine Owens. I am a fan of her work on U23D, but even more so of the video she directed for "Original of the Species."

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, y'all!

© @U2/Myers 2011.

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