bonoU2 Frontman Bono, who leads one of the most celebrated bands of the late 20th Century, turns 50 today (May 10). He can look back on a career that not only includes music, but also humanitarian crusades that have changed the world.

The Nobel Peace Prize nominee and bandmates formed U2 in 1976. The band began modestly enough. Bono responded to an advertisement for musicians posted by drummer Larry Mullen, Jr.

Bono, guitarist The Edge, and bass player Adam Clayton all auditioned in Mullen’s kitchen. From there, the rest is history.

Celebrity news service Wenn listed fascinating facts about Bono in honor of his birthday.

– Born Paul David Hewson, the rocker’s nickname is based on the Latin word “bonavox” – meaning “good voice.”

– For his humanitarian work and advocacy on behalf of Aids victims in Africa he was named a “Man of Peace” in 2008, and was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize in 2003.

– His favorite food is fish and chips, and his favorite drink is Jack Daniels or tea.

– Bono is an advid chess player, and has been playing since 12.

– In 2007, Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II knighted him (honorary) for his humanitarian work.

– The singer’s trademark sunglasses are not just a rock ‘n’ roll fashion statement – his eyes are sensitive to light.

– Bono not only sings but acts: he had small roles in “Million Dollar Hotel” and “Across The Universe.”

– During U2’s Zoo TV Tour in the early 1990s, Bono’s had onstage alter-egos, including “The Fly,” “Mirror Ball Man,” and “Mr. MacPhisto.”

– He has collaborated during his career with everyone from Bruce Springsteen, Johnny Cash and Jennifer Lopez to Frank Sinatra and Luciano Pavarotti.