U2 Bono writes letter to Prince
(Credit: David Shankbone / Discogs)

U2 frontman Bono writes heartfelt fan letter to Prince: “You are the most cinematic of musical geniuses”

Bono, the frontman of U2, has taken to the official website of the band to publish his very own personal a fan letter addressed to the late and great icon Prince.

The musician, who celebrated his 60th birthday earlier this year, shared a playlist of 60 songs that ‘saved his life’ in a wide-ranging collection that included the likes of The Rolling Stones, The Beatles, Patti Smith, Bob Dylan, Kanye West, Daft Punk, Nirvana, and, of course, Prince.

To coincide with each selection, Bono also revealed plans to write a congratulatory letter for each of his selection. When discussing Prince, Bono focused on his profound musical talent and significant impact on popular music.

“Little Richard, Miles Davis and Marc Bolan all had it… and boy did they know it… but you had it the most of all the movie stars, rock stars, instinct avatars, and improviser auteurs,” Bono began. “You were writing, producing, directing and starring as all the characters busting out from your magical, vivid soul. All you. All the time.”

The U2 frontman also fondly remembered a period of time when he was able to share a stage with Prince, writing: “Thank you for asking me to sing ‘The Cross’ with you all those nights/years ago in Dublin… I wish I’d been close enough to take the nails and the hammer out of your hands. I don’t believe anybody’s a genius… I think people just access it for a moment or a while… but you came close.”

Read the full letter and a transcript, below.

(Credit: Bono / U2)

Dear Prince,
You are the most cinematic of musical geniuses.

Little Richard, Miles Davis and Marc Bolan all had it… and boy did they know it… but you had it the most of all the movie stars, rock stars, instinct avatars, and improviser auteurs. You were writing, producing, directing and starring as all the characters busting out from your magical, vivid soul. All you. All the time.

You were a “how can it be?” event everywhere you went… and this occurring nightly.
Master of the establishing shot…

“Dig if you will this picture…”

“I was working part time in the five and dime…”

“You don’t have to be beautiful to turn me on…”

The song always said what it was about from the start, like a Hemingway story, but like all great auteurs you could never guess what you’d do next until you did it and it became obvious. Those choruses and concepts, and sounds and messages were impeccable and unbelievable…and the doves and everyone else would cry at the perfection of this font of melody and meaning…and rhythm.

Was there ever a songwriter who understood the relationship between voice and drums more? James Brown is your only peer. Having been blessed enough to spend my musical life with the great drummer Larry Mullen Jr, I find it even more incredible what you were able to do on your own… though you were, of course, always surrounded by the cream of the crop… CREAM.

Thank you for asking me to sing ‘The Cross’ with you all those nights/years ago in Dublin… I wish I’d been close enough to take the nails and the hammer out of your hands. I don’t believe anybody’s a genius… I think people just access it for a moment or a while… but you came close.

Your fandango,
Bono.

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