The first time I heard U2, I was in the bookstore at Kent State. I was only halfway listening, when some words the singer was singing grabbed my attention:
“… and the battle’s just begun, to claim the victory Jesus won …”
If you know anything about pop and rock music in the late 1970s, early 1980s, it was that:
1) Jesus was rarely mentioned (and rarely respectfully) and
2) If He was mentioned respectfully, it was usually in some “Kumbaya”-like folk song (I didn’t know about Jesus-people rock until much later)
I went up to the front desk and asked the guy behind the counter what they were playing. He showed me this album with a young boy on the front and the title of U2 War. The guy explained the band was called U2 and they were from Ireland and they were also Christians.
My budget didn’t run to albums (even though they weren’t that expensive, really) and I put the band’s name on my mental backburner and went on.
Down the road about five years or so, we all heard about Live Aid. I watched it, and there was U2 again, the lead singer drawing my attention by his antics. But the music caught my attention, too, and when Joshua Tree came out, I bought it and listened to it over and over again. Here were guys my age
singing things I believed in. I fell in love with the group and have loved them and their music ever since.
So today’s for U2 — still “Magnificent”. “Walk on”, guys.