The Letter U and the Numeral 2

Posted: 18. f 2009 in copyright, plunderphonics
Tags: , , ,

negativland_letter_u

“Yeah, you’re the fat one, and I wanna be with you”

Does anybody remember the Negativland / U2 controversy?

Negativland, the british experimental/plunderphonic band released the The letter U and the Numeral 2 in 1992. This was a 25 minute CD and booklet pressed in 4000 copies as a response to them being sued by U2’s label Island for using U2 as a name for an EP they released in 1991. In 1992 the american cyberpunk magazine Mondo 2000 was contacted by U2’s publicist wanting them to do an interview with U2 guitarist The Edge about U2’s multimedia Zoo TV tour. The magazines editor R. U. Serius, a friend of Negativland, set it up so that Negativland’s Mark Hosler and Don Joyce (without The Edge’s knowledge) could participate in the interview, letting them ask The Edge questions about copyright. There’s a transcript of the interview here.

The Letter U and The Numeral 2
Acapella version

Special Radio Edit version

Read more: article in The Wire from january 1995

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