While I was driving home from my day job tonight, my iPhone randomly chose to play the following three songs for me, in this order: “Cedarwood Road”, “The Fly”, and “Mofo”. It struck me as the last of the three was playing that each of the three songs transported me to a very different location in my head.
The first took me to what I imagine the road that Bono grew up on was like when he was a kid. In my mind’s eye, I sat under that cherry tree with him and Guggi, I ran away from the same problems, and I attended the same religious meetings, searching for the same answers that every adolescent searches for.
“The Fly” took me to the dirty, gritty streets of Berlin, immediately after the wall fell. I could feel the cautious optimism in the air, I could smell the exhaust left trailing behind the cheap little Trabants, and I stood under those grey skies, wondering what was coming next.
“Mofo” then transported me to that uber-cool record store that all the hipsters go to – the one where you almost never run into anyone under 25 and you can lose yourself for hours digging through bin after bin of vinyl. There’s some obscure indie band playing over the PA and everywhere you look, you’re surrounded by rule breakers. The kind of people who haven’t listened to a top 40 radio station in years but who can tell you about the really cool punk show they went to the night before, or the amazing little folk artist they have tickets to for that same night. The people who know what’s really going on, in other words. It struck me then how no other band on Earth takes me places like U2. Only their music has the power to transport me to three such diverse locations in a single 15 minute drive. Just one more reason why I love U2 like I do.