By Way of Introduction…

thejoshuatree_gatefold_640.jpgEarlier this year, I was surprised and honored to be asked by the National Recording Registry of the United States Library of Congress to write a short essay to accompany one of the works listed, U2’s landmark 1987 album The Joshua Tree. As a way of breaking the ice on my contributions to Spirit of Cecilia, I thought I would share that essay here. Writing it gave me the opportunity to re-connect, in a somewhat limited and wistful way, with a band that has meant a lot to me over the years. The last couple of U2 albums, despite a few great moments and the occasional flashes of brilliance, have left me cold. I was further disheartened by U2’s glib, corporatist support of the unlimited abortion license, which was deftly (and devastatingly) critiqued by Irish journalist and playwright John Waters over at First Things. This is the kind of terrain I am most likely to cover on this blog, trawling the megahertz  in search of Godly inspiration in the devil’s music.

One thought on “By Way of Introduction…”

  1. Excellent essay, Stephen! I have very fond and lasting memories around “Joshua Tree”, which came out when I was a senior in high school. I remember clearly buying it (on cassette, of course) in a small music store in Post Falls, Idaho (I was visiting friends for a few days) and then, not long after, listening to it again and again as I drove across Nevada to California, and then back home to Montana. It was like nothing else I had heard before. The last U2 album I really cared about was “Achtung Baby”; it’s been difficult to embrace much of anything the band has produced since.

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