Dave Fanning is a renowned radio & TV broadcaster, and has been Ireland's most influential DJ for more than 30 years.
Musician and Human Rights Campaigner
Paul David Hewson (Bono) was born in Dublin on the 10th May 1960.
He is the lead singer of the Irish band U2, one of the most commercially successful rock acts of all time. Across their career, U2 have won 22 Grammy awards and their album The Joshua Tree has sold over 20 million copies worldwide.
Beyond U2, Bono has also carved out an international reputation as a campaigner and philanthropist, regularly meeting with world leaders in an effort to persuade them to take action on a range of social issues facing the developing world such as extreme poverty, H.I.V. and AIDS. Bono co-founded organisations such as ONE, a grassroots campaign to make poverty history and (RED), which offers incentives to big business to give up a portion of their profit to the Global Fund to invest in African aid programmes with a focus on women and children.
Dave Fanning Biography:
Dave Fanning is a renowned radio & TV broadcaster, and has been Ireland's most influential DJ for more than 30 years. Ever since he helped U2 select the songs for their first single in 1979, Dave's career has been intertwined with that of the band. His friendship with Bono made him initially reticent to champion him as Ireland's Greatest: "I do think Bono is great, but sometimes I wish I didn't - it's not a cool thing to say. It's too easy to dismiss him, but Bono is not only a great rock star and a great humanitarian, he's also a great human being".
Why Dave believes Bono deserves to be "Ireland's Greatest":
His Musical Genius:
Bono is the singer and lyricist for one of the most popular & successful bands in the world. 22 Grammys, millions of albums, including The Joshua Tree and Achtung Baby, which show up in nearly everyone's list of Greatest Albums. Songs like One, With or Without You, and I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For are timeless classics, real works of art.
From the minute he sang "tonight thank God it's them instead of you", Bono became an advocate, a voice for Africa. He is committed to improving the lives of real people on an enormous scale. And, he's not interested in simple charity to ease his conscience - he's dedicated to cancelling African debt, encouraging trade, tackling AIDS and malaria: giving people back their dignity & respect. He has called Africa "the great moral issue of our time".
A Front Man for Ireland:
Bono & U2 were at the heart of creating a new, positive image of Ireland abroad, especially in America. Their pride at being Irish, and Bono's bravery in speaking out against the IRA and violence, re-invented many people's image of Ireland. He has the talent and the charisma to hold 100,000 people in the palm of his hand every night, and they listen to what he has to say.
He Saves Lives:
Bono is a rock star. He doesn't have to get out of bed in the morning to try to save someone's life, but he does. There are 3 million more people on retro-viral drugs in Africa because of him, countless millions with mosquito nets... For Bono, it's not about pity, or photo-ops. It's about making peoples' lives better. And if that isn't selfless, decent, generous, or Greatness, I don't know what is.
He is Brazen & Brave:
As Bono says, his celebrity is a currency he wants to spend wisely. He can get to meet Presidents, Prime Ministers & Popes face to face, but he doesn't fawn or just smile for the cameras. Like Bob Geldof, he's not afraid to push them for change, for debt relief, for more funds for poorer countries. He's wildly intelligent and can argue economic theory with the best of them... and win. The small rock-star with big glasses is the political match of anybody.