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August 22nd, 2004

Hmm... @ 02:56 pm

staceyaerosol:
I'm currently feelin: contemplative contemplative
I'm currently hearin: elevation.

The other day my friend and I were listening to "with or without you" and she asked me what I thought the song was about. although, i have sung along to this tune many a time... I had never really thought much about an interpertaion.

I know everyones interpertaion will be different. But, what is yours?

Also, have any of the boys offered their explanation in an interview?


Thanks.. and have a beauitful day.
 
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From:socialcrazed
Date:August 22nd, 2004 03:11 pm (UTC)
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My interpretation is that it deals with a man who loves a woman who is with another man, and he feels that man is wrong for her.
Mostly because of the line "And you give yourself away... I can't live with or without you..." I really don't know what the real meaning is (I haven't gotten to the Joshua Tree section of "Into the Heart" yet ;)), but that's probably it.
From:sumwonelss
Date:August 22nd, 2004 03:15 pm (UTC)
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my take has always been that its more of a situation in which she's bad for him, maybe even a cheater, and yet there are such strong feelings he feels as if he can't live with her and he can't live without her.
From:ex_darshan119
Date:August 22nd, 2004 03:25 pm (UTC)

Bono has always said that he wrote the words. . .

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With someone specific in mind, but he has never stated who it was that he was talking about. Most tend to think it was about an early girlfriend. . .

--D.
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From:unorthodox_muse
Date:August 22nd, 2004 03:28 pm (UTC)
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The best bittersweet love song ever written..

Through the storm we reach the shore, you gave it all but I want more... I think he is jealous... I don't think she had been unfaithful. He drove her away. Desire, longing, yearning, heartache..... a quarrel or separation....and feelings of never ending love.
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From:staceyaerosol
Date:August 22nd, 2004 08:39 pm (UTC)
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story of my life.
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From:unorthodox_muse
Date:August 23rd, 2004 06:06 am (UTC)
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Ditto on my end.
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From:hard2explain8
Date:August 22nd, 2004 03:39 pm (UTC)
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before I had seen the video, i pretty much figured a lot of the lines fit with Bono's faith...."And you give yourself away"..."I can't live with or without you" but most of the lines fit with a relationship between a man and a woman, not with a relationship with God.

after I saw the video and saw the hot as hell love scenes, that REALLY sealed the deal.
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From:meineuphorie
Date:August 22nd, 2004 06:05 pm (UTC)
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I've never seen the video...is there someplace I can see it?
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From:canadanne
Date:August 22nd, 2004 06:07 pm (UTC)
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Dunno about online, but it's on the Best Of 1980-1990 video, which is well worth owning! :)
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From:hard2explain8
Date:August 22nd, 2004 06:37 pm (UTC)
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definitely have to get me that. When I bought the 2-disc cd set, I got the preview of the "Best of..." DVD and i must have more!!! thanks for the tip!
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From:meineuphorie
Date:August 22nd, 2004 06:58 pm (UTC)
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good to know!!! I'll be getting that soon. Thank you :)
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From:canadanne
Date:August 22nd, 2004 03:56 pm (UTC)

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In addition to the above theories (and I agree, I always thought it was about a stormy relationship that you just can't let go of), I'm sure that *somewhere* I've read a quote from Bono where he said it partly described himself, particularly the "And you give yourself away" line. Does anyone know where this interview appeared - possibly in one of the books? Or am I just completely imagining things?
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From:canadanne
Date:August 22nd, 2004 03:58 pm (UTC)
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See also: http://hem.bredband.net/steverud/U2MoL/JTree/withoutyou.html

Number 5 might be the thing I was trying to remember!
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From:sirensong984
Date:August 22nd, 2004 04:38 pm (UTC)
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I think it's about a relationship with God..and I think he wrote it all ambiguous like that so you might not immediately assume that it's about a God, and then stuck the hot scenes in the video because, well, who really wants a "heavy" song like that? :) Of course, that's just my theory and it's all really based on the fact that I think it's fun to figure out what Bono means and it's even more fun if you think he's tricking you. :)
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From:volare
Date:August 22nd, 2004 04:38 pm (UTC)
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B. has said that it's about being in a band, the demand on yourself vs. your family, vs. giving all of yourself away to the audience every night....
From:stdivine
Date:August 22nd, 2004 06:36 pm (UTC)
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Bono has said that it's about how he feels in the band at times and that only could understand what the true meaning is. I think it's about a love that isnt returned.
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From:unorthodox_muse
Date:August 22nd, 2004 07:01 pm (UTC)
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Forgot to mention I love the icon you are using right now ;)
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From:orpheus42
Date:August 22nd, 2004 11:51 pm (UTC)
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I think it's a direct reaction to a culture that tells us everything will be ok if we have the right love, the right stuff, the right this and that.... the line "I can't live with or without you" flies right in the face of that icon, whatever it is. It has a sense of someone crying out, realizing that life is bankrupt unless there is something more than what this world has to offer.

Just my thoughts, very reflective of where I am in life at the present time.
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From:bad_lemon
Date:August 23rd, 2004 12:34 am (UTC)
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i always think of a relationship. i really think anykind of relationship would work ('cept for maybe a family, but i don't know...just thinking out loud... or dreaming out loud)
all i can remember was my math teacher from last year. he was a real young guy, 27. he was strange. there was always strange questions on the test that didn't pertain to math. ie. what's your favorite vacation spot. on one of the math tests he asked what our favorite band was, and of course i responded, U2... (and then i think i rambled for a couple lines just to throw him off) but anyway, i asked him if he liked u2 after class and he said, "no not really" of course, i asked why not. and he said, "well, in college my roomate's girlfriend broke up with him and there is only a certain amount of times that you can listen to 'with or without you'" i just laughed (even though i disagreed with him because it was FUNNY). god bless mr makela.
but me, i always think of a personal relationship with a friend... where we've really never gotten back to normal after the air has cleared.
eh, sorry i wrote so much, i just thought i'd share that story..
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From:axver
Date:August 23rd, 2004 03:34 am (UTC)
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I think the beauty of With Or Without You is that it is a personal song that the listener can interpret as they desire. There doesn't seem to be much in the way of right or wrong interpretations.

Personally, I never really had much in the way of thoughts on a deep meaning of WOWY until about a year ago, when I went through a major struggle with my faith. I now have two personal interpretations;

1. It's about my relationship with God. "Can't live with or without you."
2. It's about God's view on the world - he can't live with such fallen creatures, but he still loves them so much he can't live without them.

It may not seem to work with a lot of the lyrics, but ... internally, I feel it does, and WOWY is a very internal song.

I've also always loved the "shine like stars" verse added live. It's the glimmer of hope I really need sometimes.
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From:pornrockangel
Date:August 23rd, 2004 03:04 pm (UTC)
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one of the interpretations is indeed about the band...that 'and you give yourself away/I can't live with or without you'

it is in the book where it has the stories behind every song, i think it's this one.
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/1560253142/qid=1093298540/sr=1-5/ref=sr_1_5/104-3077018-1897553?v=glance&s=books
that's not the one I have but I think it's the same.
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From:stateless
Date:August 23rd, 2004 09:00 pm (UTC)
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bono has said it's about "the violence of love".

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