"Red, Hot and Blue" - U2

Compilation Album

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Full Track Listing:

  • I’ve Got U Under My Skin – Nenah Cherry (4:28)
  • In the Still of the Night – Neville Brothers (5:18)
  • You Do Something to Me – Sinead O’Connor (2:34)
  • Begin the Bequine – Salif Keita (3:22)
  • Love for Sale – Fine Young Cannibals (2:49)
  • Well did You Evah? – Debby Harry / Iggy Pop (3:28)
  • Miss Otis Regrets / Just one of those Things – Kirsty MacColl and the Pogues (4:40)
  • Don’t Fence Me In – David Byrne (3:09)
  • It’s All Right With Me – Tom Waits (4:40)
  • Ev’rytime We Say Goodbye – Annie Lennox (3:55)
  • Night and Day – U2 (5:21)
  • I Love Paris – Les Negresses Vertes (3:13)
  • So in Love – K.D. Lang (4:41)
  • Who Wants to be a Millionaire? – Thompson Twins (3:18)
  • Too Darn Hot – Erasure (3:40)
  • I Get a Kick – The Jungle Brothers (2:52)
  • Down in the Depths – Lisa Stansfield (4:27)
  • From this Moment On – Jimmy Somerville (3:18)
  • After You Who – Jody Watley (3:10)
  • Do I Love You? – Aztec Camera (4:40)

Background Information

The “Red, Hot and Blue” album was the first album of many compiled by the “Red Hot Organization”. The organization is an international, non-profit organization, dedicated to fighting AIDS through popular culture. John Carlin, an entertainment lawyer, had a dream to create an AIDS charity album with pop stars singing Cole Porter songs. He pulled it off and in 1990, the album was released, and went on to sell over a million copies, raising money for numerous AIDS charities. The title of the album was taken from a musical written by Cole Porter, and all the songs on the album had been written by Porter. The executive producer and musical supervisor was Steve Lillywhite.

U2’s contribution to the project was “Night and Day”. The song was written by Porter for the 1932 musical “Gay Divorce” and was initially performed by Fred Astaire on stage. Porter would claim that it was hearing the Islamic call to prayer while traveling in Morocco that had inspired the song. The song has been performed by a number of artists including Billie Holiday, Frank Sinatra, Shirley Bassey, and Etta James. U2’s version of the song was recorded with producer Paul Barrett. The song was recorded in Edge’s basement in June of 1990.

A television benefit was also planned, and the special featured Richard Gere, Carrie Fisher, and Kyle McLachlan as hosts. The special was an hour and a half long and it aired on ABC on World AIDS Day, November 30, 1990 during prime time. The special featured video clips for all of the songs that had featured on the album. For U2’s clip, “Night and Day”, they worked for the first time with director Wim Wenders. This video lead to a long friendship with Wenders, and lead to U2 collaborating with Wenders on several projects including the soundtrack for “Until the End of the World”, “Faraway So Close”, “Beyond the Clouds”, “The End of Violence”, “Don’t Come Knocking” and Wenders would also produce the film Bono had co-written, “Million Dollar Hotel”. The television special was later re-edited to allow for it to be released on home video, and later on DVD. In 2006 the album was re-released, with a second disc containing the DVD, with the whole package being released in a DVD keep case.

U2 would release a remix of “Night and Day” (Steel String Remix) on the single they released in 1992 for “One”. Another remix of “Night and Day” (Twilight Remix) was featured on the “Out Loud” compilation album. Both of these remixes were released on a promotional single titled “Night and Day”, and would later both be released as part of the 20th Anniversary release of “Achtung Baby”.

Liner Notes

Night and Day:
Written by Cole Porter. Keyboards: Dr. Paul Barrett. Congas: Noel Eccles. Infinite Guitar: Edge. Executive Producer: Steve Lillywhite. Produced by Edge and Paul Barrett. Engineered by Ian BRyan and Eoghan McCarron. Recorded in Edge’s basement, June 1990.

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