Posts Tagged ‘1983’
On January 30, 1972, Paul Hewson (aka Bono Vox) was just 11 years but the memory of that Sunday in Derry, Northern Ireland, after 10 years is still much alive in his memory and the one of other members of his band. The text of Sunday Bloody Sunday takes up the insanity of that event that saw 14 unarmed protesters succumb under the firearm blows coming from the 1st Battalion of the Parachute Regiment, British Army, at the time of high tension besieging the green island.
The crime had a great echo in the music world, a few months later Paul McCartney released the single “Give Ireland Back to the Irish” which was banned in the United Kingdom, while John Lennon wrote “Sunday Bloody Sunday” in support of the Irish Government . If these two examples are exactly modeled on the canons of the protest song, the U2 track embodies a long reflection on the events of 1972: the text was revised several times since the first version written by The Hedge, for fear that its lyrics could be misinterpreted as sectarian. The message of despair and hope contained in the verse “How long, how long must we sing this song? ” (“how long must we sing this song?”), sums up the the band’s disappointment against the violence and hatred that divide people in the name of a symbol of peace and brotherhood as Christ.
It was presented in Belfast in December 1982 in its final version and in front of a crowd of 3000 fans Bono introduced it as follows: “We’re going to do a song for you now. If you don’t like it, we’ll never play it again. It’s called ‘Sunday Bloody Sunday’.” The ovation of the public convinced the band to publish it as the opening track of the album War in March 1983 and again in mini-LP live Under A Blood Red Sky” in the same december, but despite this the concerns about how the song was transposed remained for a long time so that throughout the War Tour, to emphasize the peaceful and impartial nature of the song, Bono introduced it to the public with these now famous words: “This song is not a rebel song, this song is ‘Sunday Bloody Sunday’”
Eddie Van Halen, surely one of the greatest rock guitarists of the last 35 years, played the solo in Beat It, the famous song of Michael Jackson in 1983. Quincy Jones, Jacko’s agent and producer, contacting him to ask for his collaboration, heard slamming the phone down twice as Eddie thought it was a joke. After the match Eddie came in the recording studio in a bad mood, asked to perform a “take” to test the instrumentation and replaying his execution proved greatly disappointed. The sound engineer was of different opinion and instead of accommodate the artist and re-run, he decided to use it for the final recording of the song. Eddie Van Halen even refused to be paid for the cooperation and when Jennifer Batten, historical Michael Jackson’s guitarist, performed his solo flawlessly in the presence of Eddie, he kindly asked her to repeated because he couldn’t remember it at all.