Feb 6, 2010

Killing Bono: I Was Bono's Doppelganger


While I was at home last week, I heard that filming is currently under way in Northern Ireland on Killing Bono—a story about two Irish brothers chasing their dream of rockstardom. It's based on Neil McCormick's autobiography Killing Bono: I Was Bono's Doppelganger, and tells the story of McCormick and his hapless brother Ivan who start a band together in the late 1970s. Unfortunately for them, however, so did their classmates—a few lads who went on to become U2.

"Some are born great.
Some achieve greatness.
Some have greatness thrust upon them.
And some have the misfortune
to go to school with Bono."

The film (starring Ben Barnes of The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian and Robert Sheehan of Cherrybomb) is set for a Summer 2010 release, so you have plenty of time to read the book first, and I thoroughly recommend you do. I started my copy the other day and it's a great read.
McCormick went to Dublin's Mount Temple Comprehensive, a secondary school that the boys who grew up to form the rock band U2 also attended. As Paul Hewson (Bono), Dave Evans (The Edge), Adam Clayton, and Larry Mullen formed the band that would later take the world by storm, McCormick and his brother Ivan were also forming bands, optimistic that they would find success. For McCormick, it was never a question of if he would become a rock star, but when. In chapter one, he writes,
"And if they had informed me that among this generation of students were four individuals who would become the most famous Irish exports since Guinness, why, I would have shrugged bashfully before looking around at my schoolmates to try to work out who were the other three."
McCormick's voice is honest and funny, and while it's a book about McCormick and not U2, I have to say that as a U2/music fan, I'm loving his insights into early U2 and the late 70s/early 80s Irish music scene. Also love feeling like a fly on the wall in conversations with his still-friend, Bono.
If you've ever had a dream, you'll root for McCormick as you follow his feverish quest for fame, wanting him to make it—to realize his rock'n'roll destiny ... even though you know he won't. If you've ever had an unfulfilled dream, you'll take comfort in the fact that sometimes it is life's losers who have the most interesting tale to tell ...

Get your copy here

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