ZAGREB, March 4, 2020 – Sir Bob Geldof, frontman of The Boomtown Rats, and one of the most significant figures in the history of popular music and a key figure in the punk and new wave scene, has won the Porin – Special Merit Award for Special Achievements in Music.
The statue will be presented to Geldof in Zagreb ahead of his band’s concert at Tvornica Kulture planned for March 14th.
Geldof founded The Boomtown Rats in 1975 in Dublin, and because of their fast, loud and furious music and attitude, they became an integral part of the punk scene. Across the UK, The Boomtown Rats first toured with the Ramones and Talking Heads, shaking up the status quo with bands like Sex Pistols, The Clash, The Jam and The Stranglers.
The band became one of the biggest bands of the late ’70s and’ 80s with hits that ended up on the charts of the top ten singles, platinum albums that earned them Brit Awards, Ivor Novello and Grammy awards. They ruled the charts in 32 countries with “I Don’t Like Mondays”, became a worldwide hit and held the number one UK chart of singles, and released six defining albums of one era.
Inspired by a television news report on Ethiopia’s famine, Geldof brought together a band called Band Aid in 1984, where he brought together music stars and co-authored “Do They Know It’s Christmas,” one of the best-selling singles in music history.
In the same year, he organised the most famous humanitarian concert of all time, Live Aid, which was simultaneously held in London and Philadelphia. This was followed by Live 8, a series of concerts in 11 cities worldwide.
Due to his extraordinary humanitarian activities, Queen Elizabeth made him an honorary Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire. Although Geldof himself is not a Commonwealth citizen, so he cannot use the title, the media nevertheless gave him the nickname “Sir Bob” and media reports continue to refer to him as “Sir Bob Geldof”.
In the years that followed, Geldof’s role as a fighter for the rights of the exploited and the poor overpowered his career as a singer, but the seeds of activism can be heard in The Boomtown Rats songs and in his heart because, as he says, he is only a humble poet and dancer.
Porin statuettes have so far been awarded to a number of history-changing musicians such as The Rolling Stones, Pink Floyd, Pat Metheny, Robbie Williams, Alanis Morrisette, Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds, Eric Clapton, Miles Davis, Sade, Roger Waters, Johnny Winter, John Lydon, Arturo Sandoval, Dave Holland, Ron Carter, Sting and many others.
The imminent arrival of Sir Bob Geldof in Zagreb was seen as an ideal opportunity to ‘give this extraordinary artist and humanitarian the most prestigious Croatian music award’.