"WBCN Naked Disc" - Various Artists


U2 Related Content:

Full Track Listing:

  • Staring at the Sun – U2
  • Selling the Drama – Live
  • Freshman – Verve Pipe
  • One Foot in the Grave – Beck
  • Glycerine – Bush
  • If You Could Only See – Tonic
  • Losing My Religion – Tori Amos
  • Fly – Sugar Ray
  • Morning Glory – Oasis
  • Bury My Heart – Tanya Donnelly
  • Rosealia – Better Than Ezra
  • Superman Is Dead – Our Lady Peace
  • I’m So Good In Bed – Robert Schimmel
  • Fall Out – Police

Background Information

WBCN is a Boston area radio station, known as “The Rock of Boston”. The station, lead by DJ Carter Alan, was instrumental in breaking U2 to the US market and indeed the station was playing U2 on the radio even before they had released “Boy” in the US. Alan is the DJ who curated this mix of live performances from the WBCN archives from a variety of artists. The cover of the album calls it a collection of unreleased performances, but by the time the album was released U2’s contribution “Staring at the Sun” had been released on the “PopHeart” EP, as well as the “Please” single in the USA. This performance is the same performance from Rotterdam that featured on that single.

However, this is not strictly a live performance. The album starts out with a spoken word introduction by Bono which runs for the first 30s of the track. This is taken from a birthday message the Bono recorded for the station on a Handy-Cam, while walking around on a beach on the North-side of Dublin. The spoken introduction comes to a close as the music and crowd noise start, with a slight overlap between the two. From that point forward the track is the live performance of the song from Rotterdam, where Bono and The Edge had performed an acoustic version of the song.

The version with the spoken Happy Birthday introduction can only be found on the WBCN disc. Unfortunately the disc has been out of print for a number of years and is becoming more difficult to find. The liner notes do have some small pictures of WBCN staff with Bono and Adam Clayton.

Liner Notes

Staring at the Sun (Live in Rotterdam 7/18/97)
Music: U2. Lyrics: Bono and The Edge. Thanks to Paul McGuinness and Keryn Kaplan.
Album producer: Carter Alan.

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