The lead singer of Irish band U2 recently performed a song online that he wrote in tribute to those affected by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. He joins other celebrities who have taken their music online while the world is practising social distancing.

Bono singing on stage
Bono penned a song for people affected by the coronavirus © Paul Zimmerman/Getty Images

Bono shared a video of himself singing and playing piano to the new song, 'Let Your Love Be Known,' on the band's official Instagram account, and introduced it as "a little postcard from bubblin' Dublin." The U2 frontman revealed that it was composed just an hour before recording, and it was inspired by Italy, which has been one of the worst affected countries through the pandemic, with over 35,000 cases and almost 3000 lives lost to COVID-19.

The caption read: "For the Italians who inspired it... for the Irish... for ANYONE who this St. Patrick’s day is in a tight spot and still singing. For the doctors, nurses, carers on the front line, it's you we’re singing to." The Italian reference continued in the lyrics, and showed that Bono had clearly watched the videos that captivated the world of quarantined Italians singing together from their balconies. "You can’t touch, but you can sing across rooftops," he sang. "Sing to me down the phone, sing and promise me you won’t stop. Sing your love be known. Oh, let your love be known."

Bono acknowledged that people across the world are experiencing isolation and fear, and declared that singing is an an "act of resistance." He also referred to the fact that St Patrick's day in Dublin was very different this year, with all festivities cancelled, empty streets and people staying indoors. "Yes, there was silence," he sang. "Yes, there was no people here. Yes, I walked through the streets of Dublin and no-one was near."

The empty streets of Temple Bar
Bono wrote about how the streets of Dublin were empty © Damian Byrne

Bono was not the only celebrity taking to social media to sing for the world, as Chris Martin, John Legend, Pink and Brandon Flowers have all held virtual concerts from their homes. Legend told the Associated Press that singing online was a "cool way to connect with people and make them feel some kind of love and intimacy and connection, even though they have to be stuck at home."

Singer Pink has been sharing videos of how she and her family are getting through the self-isolation period. She decided now is a good time to learn to play the piano properly, and showed off her progress online while singing Bob Dylan’s classic ballad, “Make You Feel My Love.”

Coldplay's Chris Martin set up an Instagram Live session called ‘Together at Home’ featuring himself at home in the studio. He explained that he was meant to be with the band, but they were stuck in different countries so couldn't play together. “I thought it would be nice to see what you’re doing and how you are and what I can do for you,” he told viewers.

And finally, we all know that hand-washing is crucial to stopping the spread of the virus, and the usual advice given is to do so while singing "Happy Birthday" twice. Brandon Flowers of American rock band, The Killers, decided to put out his own version of that advice by sharing a video of him singing the band's 2003 hit debut single, Mr Brightside, while washing his hands.

Keep up to date with Lonely Planet's latest travel-related COVID-19 news here.

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SAINT-SULIAC, FRANCE - AUGUST 5, 2018: Musicians band plays at traditional festival taking back this Breton fishing village to early 1900s. Typical costumes, dancing, singing, food. ; Shutterstock ID 2180575977; purchase_order: 65050; job: Online editorial; client: Breton music dancing; other: Claire N
SAINT-SULIAC, FRANCE - AUGUST 5, 2018: Musicians band plays at traditional festival taking back this Breton fishing village to early 1900s. Typical costumes, dancing, singing, food.

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