IT’S not every day that a rock star phones you at home.
If anything less likely than that exists, it’s when he calls to get advice on how to be more popular with women.
When U2’s Zoo TV extravaganza lit up the Football Park turf in Adelaide on November 16, 1993, South Australian football legend Graham Cornes was the recipient of Bono’s phone call.
The calls became a nightly ritual for a good chunk of that world tour where he dialed in to a number of internationally renowned names – US president George Bush, the Pope, Salman Rushdie and Princess Di, among others.
While he made many of the calls in the guise of his The Fly or Mirrorball Man characters, once the band arrived in Australia, it was Bono’s Mr MacPhisto who punched in the numbers.
MacPhisto’s persona was based on a jaded, washed up, pompous, Las Vegas performer in the twilight of his career. The devilishly-horned gold-suited pale-faced platform-shoe-clad personality was a tad unpredictable.
He once called Alessandra Mussolini, granddaughter of the Italian dictator Benito. She had dipped her toe into a political career, so Mr MacPhisto left a message on her political party’s answering machine:
“Hello, I’d like to leave a message for Alessandra Mussolini. I was a close friend of her grandfather’s and I just want to tell her she’s doing a wonderful job filling the old man’s shoes.”
I mean, this was coming from the “devil”. Ouch!
Graham got off lightly, as you can see here (listen to the part where the coach in him comes out regarding the condition of the ground):
Graham’s sons, who went on to become AFL premiership players, were just 14 (Chad) and 10 (Kane) at the time of the call. How time flies.
And the baby Graham and wife Nicole were expecting?
That would be Amy, who was born the following June.