The FAQs

U2faqs.com

Friends FAQ

  1. Who is Gavin Friday?
  2. Who is Dave Fanning?
  3. Who is Wim Wenders?
  4. Who is Guggi?
  5. Who is Charles Bukowski?
  6. Who is William Gibson and what is Neuromancer?
  7. Who is Jim Sheridan?
  8. Who is Willie Williams?
  9. Who is Daniel Lanois?
  10. Who is Brian Eno?
  11. Who is "Hutch" that Bono keeps mentioning in live shows?
  12. Who are these people doing U2 Remixes?
  13. Who are Dallas Schoo, Sam Sullivan, Stuart Morgan?
  14. Who is Joe O'Herlihy?

1. Who is Gavin Friday?

Gavin Friday was born Fionan Hanvey, October 8, 1959, and grew up a few blocks down the road from Bono. They met and became friends in their teens, and Bono describes Gavin as his "friend for life, drinking buddy on weekdays, and some sort of musical diviner." Gavin formed the Virgin Prunes, while Bono began working with U2. In 1986, the Virgin Prunes ended, and after a brief stint painting, Gavin embarked on a solo career, signing to Island Records. His third solo album, Shag Tobacco, released in 1995, features an appearance by the Edge and Bono on backing vocals.

On the Zoo TV and Zooropa tours, Friday's possible influence on U2 became more apparant to the media, NME going so far as naming him Bono's "confidant and advisor". Many believe his presence was strongly felt in Bono's new stage character, MacPhisto, but Friday claims he "only put the horns on him".

In 1993, Friday, his pianist Maurice Seezer and Bono collaborated on the soundtrack for In the Name of the Father, writing three songs and performing on two of those. Bono admits it was Gavin who "did most of the work." In 2000 the three teamed up again to perform "Children of the Revolution" for the Moulin Rouge Soundtrack. And in late 2003 they joined forces on a new release of the "Peter and the Wolf" book to benefit the Irish Hospice Foundation.

Gavin has also contributed backing vocals to U2's cover of "Satellite of Love" and was a consultant on the PopMart, Elevation, and Vertigo tours. For more information about Gavin Friday visit his official site at http://www.gavinfriday.com. [CB, MJS, AS]

2. Who is Dave Fanning?

Dave Fanning has been a very popular radio DJ and TV presenter in Ireland for many years. In 1979, U2 took their first three officially recorded tracks to Fanning's popular pirate radio program. Fanning aired all three tracks each night for a week, and encouraged listeners to call in and vote for which song should be the "A-side" of the band's first single. "Out of Control" was the winner, and that first release became the U2:3 single. Since then, Fanning has become a very popular host on national radio network 2FM and continues to be a supporter of the band. He has introduced U2 at many of their Dublin concerts, and is often given the first "official" opportunity to debut new U2 songs and albums on commercial radio.

3. Who is Wim Wenders?

Wim Wenders is a German movie director. His first work with U2 was directing the video for "Night and Day", and their meeting likely came about when U2 was working in Germany on the recording of Achtung Baby. His movies since that time have often included a U2 track on the soundtrack, starting with "Until the End of the World" which was featured in Wenders' movie called Until the End of the World. Other contributions include:

  • "The Wanderer" and "Stay" for the movie Faraway So Close
  • "Your Blue Room" and "Beach Sequence" for the movie Beyond the Clouds
  • "I'm Not Your Baby" for the movie The End of the Violence
  • "If God Will Send His Angels" for the English remake of Wenders' Wings of Desire which was called City of Angels

Wenders also directed U2's video for "Stay" and directed The Million Dollar Hotel, a movie which Bono co-wrote the screenplay for. For more information on Wim Wenders please visit http://www.wim-wenders.com/ [SR, SL, MPZ, CG, AS]

4. Who is Guggi?

Guggi, whose real name is Derek Rowen, is the older brother of Peter Rowen, the boy who is shown on the covers of Boy and War. Guggi, like Bono and Gavin Friday, acquired his nickname from Lypton Village in Dublin, and was also an original member of the Virgin Prunes. Because Larry had a day job when U2 were just beginning and couldn't make it to every rehearsal, Guggi sometimes filled in. Guggi is frequently thanked in the liner notes of U2 albums, and Bono's first son is partly named after him (Elijah Patricius Bob Guggi Q). Today, Guggi is a well-known painter who has had major exhibitions in New York and Dublin. [SC, CB]

5. Who is Charles Bukowski?

The song "Dirty Day" on Zooropa was dedicated to Charles Bukowski. He was an internationally famous contemporary poet and prose stylist. He was born in Andernach, Germany, and came to the U.S. at an early age. He has published 45 volumes, both novels and poetry. Unfortunately, Mr. Bukowski passed away in 1994 at the age of 74. He wrote with a very raw and honest style. A good sampling of Bukowski's work can be found in Septuagenarian Stew: Stories and Poems or Love is a Dog From Hell, both published by Black Sparrow Press.

The movie Barfly with Mickey Rourke and Faye Dunaway is based on the writings of Bukowski. Like much of his writing, Barfly was semi-autobiographical, and the movie depicts some of the occurances in Bukowski's life. [RA, JC]

6. Who is William Gibson and what is Neuromancer?

William Gibson's writing was a big influence on the Zooropa album. Gibson is known as the "father of cyberpunk" and has been credited with introducing the term "cyberspace". His book Neuromancer, and the following books in the trilogy, Mona Lisa Overdrive and Count Zero dealt with cyberspace and virtual environments. He was one of the earlier writers tackling such subjects in the fiction he was writing.

Gibson's 1996 novel, Idoru drew from Gibson's travels with U2 during the Zoo TV tour. One of the novel's plot threads deals with the world's most popular band, Lo/Rez. Some of U2's experiences in the night clubs of Tokyo during the Zoo TV tour are echoed in that novel.

One of Gibson's short stories was adapted for a feature length film, Johnny Mnemonic and Bono was initially offered a starring role in the film. He wisely chose to turn the offer down, and instead U2 contributed a song to the soundtrack. U2 also contributed music to the audio adaptation of Neuromancer.

In April 2005, Gibson followed U2 on tour for a short time to write an article for Wired magazine. [IM, JP, CC, M2, AS]

7. Who is Jim Sheridan?

An Oscar-nominated movie director, Jim Sheridan owned the Project Arts Centre, the club U2 (and the Virgin Prunes) played in as teenagers. Bono and Gavin Friday co-wrote three songs on the soundtrack to his movie, In The Name Of The Father, and performed on two of these songs. He also produced the film Bloody Sunday, a documentary about the events that occured in Derry, Ireland in 1972. U2's "Sunday Bloody Sunday" is the only song featured in the film, and it is a live version which runs over the credits. Sheridan is also the writer and director of the film In America, to be released in 2003. Bono, Gavin Friday, and Maurice Seezer have written the song "Time Enough for Tears" for the In America soundtrack. The song will be performed by Andrea Corr. For more information on Jim Sheridan, visit the Internet Movie Database. [LDR, JP, CB]

8. Who is Willie Williams?

Willie Williams has worked with U2 since 1983 when he joined the band as Lighting Director on the War tour. Since then, his role has expanded to become the band's Tour Designer -- responsible for the creative, technical, and developmental aspects of each of U2's tours. He works with the band when tour ideas are first being discussed, chooses the technology, art work, etc., to use to bring those ideas to life, and works with the various staging and production companies involved to make each show happen around the world. He's also responsible for the formation of Propaganda -- U2's official fan club and magazine -- which has been the band's direct link to its most ardent fans since 1986. His Tour Diaries, which began with the Zoo TV Tour and continued through Elevation, have been published in Propaganda and online at U2.com and have given U2 fans a unique glimpse behind the scenes of life on the road with U2.

When he's not on the road with U2, Willie has also worked on tours by The Rolling Stones, R.E.M., David Bowie, Oasis, The Corrs, and many others. He's also designed permanent art installations for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, the Experience Music Project, and the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta.

9. Who is Daniel Lanois?

Daniel Lanois is a Canadian musician and producer. He's worked extensively with U2 since 1984. He has co-produced The Unforgettable Fire, The Joshua Tree, Achtung Baby, and All That You Can't Leave Behind. He has often contributed additional instrumentation and backing vocals to these projects. He also worked with U2 on The Million Dollar Hotel Soundtrack. He also worked with Larry Mullen on Emmylou Harris' Wrecking Ball album. Both Adam Clayton and Larry Mullen contributed to Lanois' first solo album Acadie For more information on Daniel Lanois please visit http://www.daniellanois.com [AS]

10. Who is Brian Eno?

Brian Eno was a founding member of Roxy Music, before moving on to his own solo career, and began producing other artists. He has co-produced The Unforgettable Fire, The Joshua Tree, Achtung Baby, Zooropa, and All That You Can't Leave Behind. He is also credited as the fifth member of the Passengers project, which saw Eno join U2 in a more active contributing role. [AS]

11. Who is "Hutch" that Bono keeps mentioning in live shows?

Hutch is Michael Hutchence, former lead singer of the band INXS. Michael and Bono were close friends, and reportedly Bono and Ali were considered for the role of godparents for Michael's daughter, Tiger Lily. The song, "Elegantly Wasted" by INXS is said to have been written after Michael and Bono were out for a "night on the town."

Hutchence passed away in 1997. In some PopMart concerts, Bono makes reference to "Hutch" in concert. Bono also wrote the song "Stuck in a Moment You Can't Get Out Of" about Hutchence. Often during the Elevation tour Bono would make mention of Hutchence before this song, or "Gone".

Bono has also contributed vocals to a Michael Hutchence solo album, on the track "Slide Away". The album was incomplete at the time of Hutchence's death, and Bono was approached to finish the song by composing additional lyrics and contributing vocals. [AS]

12. Who are these people doing U2 Remixes?

U2 has brought in several well known artists and producers to work on their singles producing various remixes of the tracks. We won't try to name each remixer, but we will list some of those you may have heard of through other projects.

  • Paul Oakenfold - Known for his Perfecto record label. Has produced many remixes for New Order, as well as scoring the movie Swordfish and working on the soundtrack to Planet of the Apes. He also toured as an opening act during U2's Zoo TV Tour.
  • William Orbit - Probably best known for co-writing and producing Madonna's Ray of Light, he has also worked remixing Sarah McLachlan, Limp Bizcuit, Depeche Mode, and many others.
  • Jimmy Cauty - Well known for his late 80's / early 90's work in the groups The KLF and The Orb.
  • Butch Vig - This drummer for the group Garbage, also has an extensive production career, including producing albums for Nirvana, the Smashing Pumpkins and Sonic Youth.
  • David Morales - Has remixed hundreds of artists including Bjork, INXS, Janet Jackson, and Madonna.

13. Who are Dallas Schoo, Sam Sullivan, Stuart Morgan, Fraser McAlister?

These four gentlemen are known to many of the fans who see U2 live. They are the guys on stage tuning the equipment and setting things up before each U2 show. Dallas Schoo is the guitar tech for the Edge on tour, as well as in the studio occasionally, such as on the Zooropa album. Sam Sullivan is the drum tech, and also acts as a studio manager for U2 in non-touring time, as he did for the All That You Can't Leave Behind album. Stuart Morgan is the bass guitar tech for the band on the road, and in the studio. Fraser McAlister is Bono's guitar technician.

14. Who is Joe O'Herlihy?

Joe O'Herlihy has been a member of the U2 organization since the start. In the credits for the album Boy he is credited as part of the tour crew as "Amigo O'Herlihy". Joe has acted as sound engineer for U2 tours since the start. He recently was awarded a TEC (Technical Excellence & Creativity) Award for his work as Front of the House Engineer for U2's Elevation tour.

O'Herlihy has also worked on the studio recording process with U2. He can be found in the liner notes of many of U2's studio albums listed for "Monitoring". In his time away from U2, O'Herlihy has been known to work with other acts such as the Cranberries and R.E.M.