Bono’s “Full Irish” Playlist and RTE Interview

Original Story by Aaron J. Sams (2020-05-08)

Today Bono put together and shared a playlist of forty songs by Irish artists. The playlist was shared via YouTube, and was put together as part of a celebration of his 60th birthday which is happening on Sunday. The playlist is available now on YouTube.

The playlist itself says “With the world in lockdown, Bono’s been at home and tuning in to some of the inspirational Irish musicians who’ve been the soundtrack to his life.
A Top Forty. Welcome to The Full Irish!”

The playlist posted is as follows, featuring a number of Irish artists from across the decades. If you want to listen you’ll have to follow the link to U2’s YouTube account where the playlist was posted today.

  • “Dearg Doom” – Horslips (1973)
    (Anyone who knows Larry Mullen’s “Put ‘em Under Pressure“ will recognize this song, as it borrowed heavily from Horslips.)
  • “Gloria” – Them ft. Van Morrison (1965)
    (We all know this song from Bono’s generous use of it in snippets over the years.)
  • “Get Down” – Gilbert O’Sullivan (1973)
  • “Dancing in the Moonlight” – Thin Lizzy (1977)
    (U2 was known to cover this song at some of their earliest shows, and in 2001 played it on stage at Slane Castle on August 25, 2001)
  • “Teenage Kicks” – The Undertones (1978)
  • “Alternative Ulster” – Stiff Little Fingers (1978)
    (This song can be heard in U2’s 13-minute film for “Every Breaking Wave“ in the car scene.)
  • “Neon Heart” – The Boomtown Rats (1977)
  • “Song of the Faithful Departed” – The Radiators (1979)
    (A band formed in 1976 which includes vocalist Steve Rapid, aka Steve Averill, one of the graphic designers who has worked on many of U2’s album covers.)
  • “Downmarket” – The Blades (1983)
  • “Nothing Compares 2U” – Sinéad O’Connor (1990)
    (One of Sinéad’s early breaks was working with The Edge on the soundtrack of Captive providing vocals on the song “Heroine.”)
  • “Caucasian Walk” – Virgin Prunes (1982)
    (Virgin Prunes came out of Lypton Village at the same time that U2 did, and includes longtime friends Guggi and Gavin Friday.)
  • “Friends in Time” – The Golden Horde (1991)
    (A band that recorded on U2’s Mother Records, and featuring Bono’s friend Simon Carmody)
  • “Shining Light” – Ash (2001)
    (Ash played with U2 in Belfast in 1997 at a peace concert in 2000 to bolster the “Yes” vote that year. Annie Lennox would later cover this song and release it as a single.)
  • “This Is” – Aslan (1988)
    (U2 covered the song “This Is” in 2013)
  • “Hello Hello Hello Hello Hello (Petrol)” – Something Happens (1990)
    This song featured on Something Happens’ album Stuck Together With God’s Glue which Bono would later borrow for a lyric in “Staring at the Sun.”)
  • “A Rainy Night in Soho” – The Pogues (1985)
    (U2 opened a number of shows on the 2017 tour with “A Rainy Night in Soho” before switching to “The Whole of the Moon” later in the tour. The Pogues opened for U2 on a number of shows in 1987.)
  • “Theme from Harry’s Game” – Clannad (1983)
    (U2 used this song as an outro most nights on the War tour, and it is the song that can be heard at the start of the video release of Under a Blood Red Sky. )
  • “North and South of the River” – Christy Moore (1995)
    (A song originally released by Christy Moore with Bono and the Edge, and later performed by U2. Here Bono chooses one of Christy Moore’s solo version.)
  • “Springhill Mining Disaster” – The Dubliners (1973)
    (A song that U2 has performed at a tribute to The Dubliners, and often in concert in 1987. They last sang a snippet of it just up the road from Springhill at 2011’s closing show of the U2360 tour in Moncton NB.)
  • “Linger” – The Cranberries (1993)
  • “Comeback Girl” – Republic of Loose (2005)
    (The song Bono shares is credited to Ben Loose, the vocalist. The band opened for U2 at one show in Dublin in 2009)
  • “Falling Slowly” – Glen Hansard / Marketa Irglova (2006)
  • “Love Don’t Work This Way” – Hothouse Flowers (1987)
    (An act that got their start on U2’s Mother Records. This song was the seventh release on the label.)
  • “Time Enough for Tears” – Andrea Corr (2003)
    (A song written by Bono, Gavin Friday and Maurice Seezer for the In America soundtrack.)
  • “I Don’t Want to Change You” – Damien Rice (2014)
  • “Take Me to Church” – Hozier (2013)
    (Bono joins Hozier for a chat on the second episode of Hozier’s “Cry Power“ Podcast)
  • “Outnumbered” – Dermot Kennedy (2019)
  • “Run” – Snow Patrol (2003)
    (Snow Patrol have opened for U2 during the Vertigo and U2360 tours. The band are big fans of U2. We recommend a read of the lead singer’s thank you to U2 in 2010.)
  • “Everybody Loves You” – SOAK (2018)
    (SOAK was featured on the recording of “Women of the World” used on the Experience tour, and was used in the preshow setlist in the past.)
  • “Ruin Your Night” (Acoustic) – Sorcha Richardson (2016)
  • “Boys in the Better Land” – Fontaines DC (2018)
    (Another song often heard in the pre-show mix at U2 shows.)
  • “More is Less” (2019) – The Murder Capital
  • “It Won’t Always Be Like This” – Inhaler (2019)
    (A new band out of Dublin, featuring a rather familiar looking / sounding lead singer.)
  • “Black Tears” – Imelda May (2017)
    (A long time friend of Bono’s who has appeared on stage with the band, joining them for a rocking version of “Desire” in Dublin in November 2015.)
  • “Take My Hand” – Picture This (2016)
  • “The Dole Q” – Scary Éire (1995)
    (First Irish hip hop act to be signed to a major Irish label.)
  • “Am I Sad” – Elma Orkestra and Ryan Vail (2019)
  • “I’m Getting Tired” – Jacknife Lee with Beth Ditto and Earl St. Clear (2020)
    (Jacknife Lee has remixed a number of U2’s song and featured as a producer on Songs of Experience and How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb. This song is a brand new one.)
  • “We Fall Together (We Fall Apart)” – St Francis Hotel (2020)
    (Barry Gorey and Declan Gaffney’s band have remixed a number of U2 songs over the years, and Gaffney has been an important member of U2’s studio crew.)
  • “The Island” – Paul Brady (1986)
    (A song featured on Brady’s Back to Centre, on which Larry Mullen played drums on the song “Airwaves”)

On RTÉ Radio this morning Bono talked about working on the list of Irish artists shared above on the Ryan Tubridy Show:

“Gratefully I’m at home. So are the rest of the band. We’ve been touring a lot for the last years. It’s time to give our audience a break. It’s come at the right time. I’m really enjoying writing and reading and making lists…”

“I’ve got a top 40 of favorite Irish songs at the moment. Well it’s everything from the Fontaines, recently, and going back to the great Shane MacGowen, it’s timeless. Van Morrison. Thin Lizzy. Damien Rice. Glen Hansard.”

Bono finished up the interview talking about his plans for his 60th birthday, “I was going to just go for a long walk, a bit of a pilgrimage, just with the family.”

A second list of songs by Bono should make an appearance over the weekend to celebrate his birthday. This one will be a bit longer and look further afield than just artists from Ireland. “On one of my lists I have Andrea Bocelli segway into Elvis’s ‘Heartbreak Hotel’ then into Johnny Cash’s ‘Hurt.’ It’s the whole opera isn’t it? You think of Elvis as Rock n’ Roll but I love the opera of him.” I“ve got 60 years of music to reflect upon. Some of it is even recent. That Billie Eilish song, ‘Everything I Wanted’, when i listen to that, I’m just completely, I can’t look away. What about Hozier. He lives down the road, the quietest storm that blew into town.” Once the list is published we’ll be sure to pass along where to find it.

The full interview with Bono can be heard here. U2.Com have also published an article on the Irish playlist. And if you are looking for a few more Irish artists, last night we shared three performances of Irish artists playing U2 songs in the recent weeks, two of the bands featured in the list above.

Many thanks to Graham and U2History for their additions to the list above.

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