Three Central American U2 fans who delivered a 60,000-name petition pleading for the band to play in El Salvador were rewarded last week with a private concert. The planet’s biggest rock group played a short impromptu gig for the trio in Dublin last Thursday evening.
Frankie Rivas, a DJ and exile from El Salvador during the country’s civil war of the 1980s, said: “We were meeting on Thursday with U2’s publicist in Dublin, Lindsey Holmes, when she turned around and said, ‘Would you like to go and see the band’s studio?’ We didn’t think for one moment that we were actually going to meet the guys.
“When we got there Bono and the lads said hello and all of us were stunned. Then they played [new songs] No Line on the Horizon and Breathe for us. I couldn’t believe it.” He said the band had refused to give an answer as to the possibility of playing El Salvador on the world tour but would think about it.
Rivas described having a private audience with U2 as “a truly amazing experience”. He co-runs a campaign back in El Salvador called “U2 Veni” or “U2, come here”.
U2 are adored in El Salvador because they dedicated a song – Bullet the Blue Sky – to the country and the plight of its people during its bloody civil war on their 1987 album The Joshua Tree.
“Back home at present ‘U2 Veni’ is a national campaign. The slogan is all over billboards, taxis and newspapers. We are currently aiming to get one million online signatures to petition U2 to come over to El Salvador,” Rivas added.
- Guardian News and Media Limited