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U2 - "Where the Streets Have No Names"

I found this very interesting:

"Where the Streets Have No Name" (from the album Joshua Tree) is one of U2's most popular recorded songs. It's been a tremendous influence on the hearts, lives, and ministry of many Christian artists like Chris Tomlin, Pillar, and Charlie Hall. Many people have different interpretations of the lyrics of the song. Bono, lead singer of U2, (his real name is Paul Hewson, and Bono is a nickname he has gone by for a long time since he was a kid) has always been guarded about what the lyrics of his songs truly mean. But, long-time fans of the band, who know the members’ background and history, explain it this way:

Growing up on the north side of Dublin, Ireland, greatly affects how the members of U2 view their lives, songwriting, and faith. Ireland has a history of violence between Catholics and Protestants that goes back for centuries—agreements made and agreements broken. The violence at times has been very brutal and at other times it has been calm. But, this clash is still very much apart of today's Ireland like it has been for many years.

In Dublin, as in America, economic class distinctions exist based on where you live and what street you live on. As Bono and other members of the band grew up, Catholics and Protestants separated themselves according to the streets they lived on. Some streets were “Protestant” streets while others where “Catholic” streets. Bono, in interviews about his childhood, talks about the violence between street gangs and how people were beaten up by Catholic street gangs just because they were Protestant, living on a Protestant street, needing to walk by a Catholic street to get home.

In preparing for their Joshua Tree album, that was released in 1987, U2 spent a good bit of time in the Los Angeles area as they wrote and recorded. Out in the Mojave Desert, north of Los Angeles, there is a plant that is part of the cactus family called the Joshua Tree. In this part of the Mojave at the time the album was written, there was a town that was laid out on a high plain where land is cheap. Buildings were being built there because of the cheap land. But, the streets didn't have names. The idea was monumental in expressing the longing that Bono had to creatively express the desire to meet in a place where there is no economic distinction; no religious distinctions; a place where there is peace and unity; a place of love and freedom; a place like Heaven.

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