How did it get to be May already? This year has been a bit of a whirlwind so far, in the best way imaginable. I just passed the one year anniversary of operating Aardvark Girl full-time, and I haven’t looked back once. Every day, I appreciate the freedom to control my own schedule, to choose the people with whom I work, and to take on projects that enlighten and challenge me. If any of you out there are contemplating taking a similar leap, please let me encourage you to believe in yourself and do it!
It is that newfound freedom that has allowed me to pursue a longtime passion project, producing a documentary about the U2 fan community, entitled “Dream Out Loud.” For years, my friend David Barry (a filmmaker and fellow U2 fan) and I have talked about how special U2 fans are, and how great it would be to tell the stories about their connection to the band, the music, and each other. Then, with the announcement of the Joshua Tree 30th Anniversary Tour, it seemed like the right time to make it happen. So we launched a Kickstarter campaign in February to see if others would support the endeavor. U2 fans from around the world answered the call, and now we are making this dream a reality.
Most people who know me know I’m a huge U2 fan. I grew up listening to their music with my family, and went to my first U2 concert when I was 11. Since then, I have seen them 21 times, a number that is about to increase with the JT30 tour. In 2008, I met Bono and the Edge at an event honoring BB King, where they played “When Love Comes to Town” with him. I will never forget standing backstage waiting to watch them perform, when suddenly the Edge was on my left, and Bono and BB King were on my right, and I was just in the midst of their conversation. Later, I was in a small room with them, just a few feet away from my musical heroes, while they were being interviewed about the blues for a project Dave was working on. At the end, one of the crew members asked for a picture. Bono looked at me from across the room and excitedly said, “I want to take a picture with her!” He and the Edge came over and took a picture with Dave and me, and we got to chat with them for a little while. That was one of my top life moments so far.
But being a fan is not the only reason I wanted to be involved in this film. Right now, one of the things I’m most attracted to in life is community. I feel there is so much negativity in the world these days, and so many people are fighting to hold each other back instead of being supportive and lifting each other up. The U2 community is an extraordinary group of people who are kind, encouraging, and inspiring. The way they came together to support this film was truly special. I’ve seen the interaction on social media, and have gotten to know many of them throughout pre-production, as I’ve scheduled more than 150 interviews in 25 cities and 5 countries. I know making this movie is going to be an incredible and rewarding experience.
It’s also something I never would’ve been able to do if I was still working for someone else. It’s funny how everything ties together sometimes. I started this company not quite knowing what my dreams really were, but once I focused, my dreams started presenting themselves. It really is that concept of dreaming out loud, something we should all do a little more often.
So wish me luck on my adventures, which are already underway and kick into overdrive with the launch of the tour this week in Vancouver. If you’re interested in following the film, we have pages set up on Facebook and Instagram where we’ll post updates throughout production. And if you'll be at any of the shows, please come by and say hello!