Announcing U2: Song by Song

Original Story by Aaron J. Sams (2024-01-08)

I am happy to announce that I have written a book, U2: Song by Song, which will be published in 2024 by Fonthill Media. The book is part of Fonthill’s Song by Song collection, which features the songs of other artists ranging from Madonna to Rush.

IMAGE: Cover of U2: Song by Song by Aaron J. Sams

The content of the book is described as:

U2 formed in 1976 when Larry Mullen Jr., the band’s future drummer, posted a note on his school bulletin board. Forty-seven years, seventy singles and fourteen studio albums later, U2 has become one of the most successful rock bands of all time, still producing music and touring the world with the same line-up since the 1970s. In this book, the reader is guided through each release, song by song, from the band’s first album Boy (1980) until the single ‘Your Song Saved My Life’, released in 2021. Everyone knows U2’s biggest hits—songs like ‘With or Without You’, ‘One’ and ‘Beautiful Day’—but few have closely examined all of the songs, including B-sides, compilation tracks and lesser-known album tracks.

Fonthill is taking pre-orders here, and it is available through sellers such as Amazon, as well as local bookshops for pre-order as well.

The book takes a look at every released U2 song starting with the album Boy right through to the new single “Atomic City” released in September. (Yes, the descriptions online state it ends with 2021, but was able to add one last song more recently.) There is a chapter dedicated to each album that U2 have released, with an entry for each song on the album. At the end of each chapter is a section looking at the other tracks from that timeframe that don’t appear on the album. Appendices at the end look at U2’s full discography, the songs from other artists which U2 have covered, and the band’s solo discographies. Over 300 quotes are included from the band and their collaborators discussing the individual song titles throughout the book.

I spent most of 2021 writing the book, and the first draft was turned in on Christmas eve that year. I spent weeks going through interviews with U2. I spent hours finding old print interviews I didn’t know existed. I had hundreds of hours of interviews to listen to as well. I got to speak to a few of the people who were there beside the band over the years. I had a lot of help from other fans as well. The time you took to listen and offer advice as I bounced ideas around was invaluable. Excited to share more about the book going forward!


Pre-Order Links:

We’ve added a few links below which are now active. Not all of them are currently taking pre-orders, but will be active over the next few days. The book can also be ordered through local bookshops, and other online shops besides the following as well. So if you have a favourite local bookstore, or prefer a store not on the list below, they should be able to order in a copy of the book, or may already have it in their catalog.

Please note some of the listings above are still being updated.

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