Louis Walsh claims he ‘saved’ Bono and U2’s career after convincing them to stick with their band manager Paul McGuinness when they considered axing him in their early days.
The Irish band boss recalled how he overheard a conversation between Bono and the band discussing ‘getting rid’ of McGuinness in Dublin restaurant Captain Americas and decided to intervene to vouch for his fellow band manager and friend. Referencing Bono’s upcoming memoir, Surrender, the renowned music mogul, responsible for the careers of the likes of Westlife and Boyzone, told Doireann Garrihy’s Laughs of Your Life podcast: “About 30 years ago, Captain Americas was the kind of place to be.
“It was the place to go. I used to go there about once a week. It was a great place. But I am there one day, and U2 are at the next table. Nobody really knows them, they are just starting and rehearsing, but they are ambitious and Bono is there. But they are talking out loud. And I hear them saying they want to get rid of their manager Paul McGuinness, out loud.
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“And I'm listening thinking ‘this can’t be real’. I know Paul, he’s a brilliant manager. And I just went over to them and said ‘guys are you really serious about getting rid of Paul McGuinness? He will make you. He is the greatest manager. And I was right’.
“But that’s a true story. And Bono tells it in his book,”
“He’s got an amazing memory. He is a great operator. Try and get him for this.”
When Doireann asked if he would help her and put in a good word, the former X Factor judge went on: “Well, I kind of saved his life didn’t I? And he stayed with Paul McGuinness.
“I think he will be brilliant[for the podcast]. He’s a brilliant operator. And not just as a front man, as a politician, as a father, as a role model for Irish people, I think he is brilliant.
“He is [kind] and he is constantly working. And I admire him greatly, I really do. We need more Bonos.”
The music man went on to get emotional as he recalled finding out about Stephen Gately's death through a text. The Mayo native, who is living in Dublin, also opened up about his own life and career, from his teenage days leaving the west of Ireland for the big smoke to his friendship and fondness of Simon Cowell. And whilst the talent boss said he is a ‘happy person’, he said he would like to be back working more, and with new Irish talent.
On why he never discusses his personal life, he said: “It’s boring, but I’m happy. I was always very happy. And at the moment I'm probably an eight out of ten.
Asked where the other two are, he went on: “I’m not doing an awful lot of work but I’d like to do something new. A new project. I like to find somebody great. I think there is so much great talent here.”
But Louis told how he does get great pleasure out of ‘treating’ himself daily, admitting he eats out in restaurants every single day. He said: “I treat myself everyday. I go out every single day, I have about 20 different restaurants and I do them in different order.
“And there’s so many great restaurants in Dublin. Every day. I don’t cook. These hands are not made for cooking.”
He added: “I watch an awful lot of TV. I’m a junkie. I watch everything. I’d watch Selling Sunset, and then I’d watch Narcos, anything. I just love it.”
“I love the Sopranos, that was the best thing ever. I don’t sleep until nearly 3am or 4am every night. It is fantastic, there is nobody around, I can do what I want. A cup of tea. I love it.”
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