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Musician represents himself in court as he sues U2 claiming he wrote song on 2004 album

Dublin musician Maurice Kiely says he played it for bassist Adam Clayton, and that he agreed that the band could perform the song in certain circumstances

Bono and Adam Clayton of U2. Photo: Reuters© REUTERS

Tim HealyIndependent.ie

A preliminary issue in a High Court action brought by a musician who is seeking damages from U2 over what he claims is the band’s unlawful use of a song he wrote has been listed for hearing next month.

Dublin musician Maurice Kiely claims that he wrote the song entitled A Man and A Woman which is included on U2's 2004 album How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb.

He claims that he wrote the song in the 1990s and played it for U2 bassist Adam Clayton, and that he agreed that the band could perform the song in certain circumstances.

He claims that in breach of contract and in breach of his copyright the band performed the song live.

He is now seeking damages from the band.

Mr Kiely has sued Dublin registered company U2 Ltd, a corporate entity set up in the early 1990s for the administration of arts facilities, that is associated with the world-famous band.

The company, represented in court by Kelley Smith SC, instructed by Beauchamp's solicitors, rejects all of Mr Kiely's claims and opposes his action.

On the 2004 album, the song is accredited to band members the ‘Edge’ Dave Evans, and Bono.

The song was the subject of an earlier legal claim made by Mr Kiely before a court in California.

However, the claim was dismissed on jurisdictional grounds.

At the High Court on Wednesday Mr Kiely was granted a date for the hearing of a pretrial motion that has arisen out of his claim.

Mr Kiely, who is representing himself in the action, claims that the defendant company has failed to properly answer formal questions or requests for information about the case, known as interrogatories, he has put to it.

Such questions are put to parties involved in court actions in order to clarify matters of fact and help to determine in advance what facts will be presented at the trial of the case.

The defendant is opposing the application and says that it has not replied to matters put to it by Mr Kiely on the grounds that the questions are not relevant to the claim.

The matter came before Mr Justice Brian O'Moore, who adjourned the plaintiff's motion to March 10 next.

The motion had been due to be heard later in March but the court agreed to move it following a request by the plaintiff, who said that for medical reasons he wanted the matter heard as soon as possible.

The judge said while the court's list in March was full, he hoped that the matter would be heard on that date.

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