Aug
10
2012

Unforgettable Single

541
10 August 2012
Unforgettable Single
Over on our Discography page you'll find dozens and dozens of singles the band have released over the years.

Starting with U23 way back in 1979 - Out of Control, Stories for Boys, Boy-Girl - the trail leads all the way to 'I'll Go Crazy', third single from No Line On The Horizon, in 2009.

Maybe you'd forgotten Lemon was a single. Or you've never listened to Fire. Or you just recently discovered Please. But there'll be a U2 single that's special to you in some way - the one that comes on the radio or arrives unnoticed when your iPod's on shuffle and suddenly a moment in your life comes back to you.

What was the U2 single that stopped you in your tracks - and still does ?

It might depend on where you were when you first heard it, what was happening in your life, how you first got into the band?

Remind yourself of the history of the band's single releases and look through the promotional videos on this page in our Video Gallery (set aside a week or two for this) -  find the one that reminds you of a time and place in your life.

In the comments below tell us why this song is special for you. Is there a story behind it - an anecdote from your life ?

What brings the track alive for you? What was happening to you at the time you first heard it that means you'll never get over this single?

We have prizes for the best, the funniest, the most moving or surprising entries. Add them in the comments below. Did we mention that ? (Don't forget - we're not talking about any U2 track but about those released as singles...)


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541  Comments
bonogirl72 - 12 October, 2012
Bad
I have been following this amazing band since I was 12 years old. It was 1984 and Unforgettable Fire was out.....I was young and forced to listen to whatever my parents had on the radio in the car, which certainly wasn't anything I enjoyed. But while at skating practice the radio was on and Pride came on and stopped my in my tracks. Who was this magical voice? Such passion. I saved all my allowance and my mom brought me to the mall and I made my very own cassette tape purchase. I rushed home to open it and listened with such anticipation. When the song "Bad" came on I knew I was in love. The song is just pure perfection....the lyrics, the way it builds....like a journey to the heavens. To this day I still get goosebumps every time I hear it. I have yet to hear it live - definitely on my bucket list. Next tour I will dedicate my life to following them around until I do. I cannot imagine the range of emotions I will feel when Edge hits those first notes and I realize what is happening. There truly is no song better on this planet then "Bad".
soldierinwhite - 11 October, 2012
City of Blinding Lights
I was at the 360 concert in Cape Town with some friends and the band had just played Miss Sarajevo, with Bono singing Pavarotti's part with such a resonant tone that we were all spellbound. Followed by Fez and scenes from across the world on the screens, we were all taut with emotion, from grief to anticipation. As the opening tinkling of City of Blinding Lights started, so did the tingling in our spines and the twinkling of the displays. I was in rapture. All that emotion was bubbling to the surface. We were totally transfixed at what was happening, something unlike anything I have ever felt before or since. MY favourite song would always remain Streets, but for once, a different intro blew everything I had heard up to that point out of the water.
heuvel - 11 October, 2012
Unforgettable fire
I follow the band since 1981 and still do. The last concert was Montreal last year, after mexico, bruxelles, amsterdam and Barcelona. But that is not important. My song is Unforgettable fire. I love this song. The music parts are really great. And I loved it when they played it at the first night in Barcelona 2009 after 20 years. This song gives my allways a feeling of hapiness and rest.
viu2 - 09 October, 2012
Stuck In A Moment and Unknown Caller
The first saved my life when I was leaving this world (literally), I was 12. The second make me breathe (literally again).
celligianluca - 09 October, 2012
For my Friend ... Where The Streets Have
I followed U2 since the days of Sunday Bloody Sunday, October was exciting, but when it came out The Joshua Tree album, Where The Streets ... came into my heart, liver and brain. In 2009, July 7, thanks to a friend of mine I was able to attend the concert of the 360​​° Tour in Milan, and during Streets ... I started to cry, friendly mocked by my friend. Exactly one year later, that friend of mine died in a motorcycle accident. I'm still crying ... (R.I.P.)
CKU2 - 05 October, 2012
Where The Streets Has No Name
I liked U2 in the mid 80's but when the Joshua Tree album came out, I was in aw!! The opening song When The Street Has No Name on the album just went into my soul soooo deep it just took me out. It's so powerful !!! That's when my I fell in love with U2's music for good:)
tvc - 05 October, 2012
Electrical Storm
I was at work when I first heard Electrical Storm, played on WXRTchicago. It was just another very moving song from U2. Hits a nerve, emotionally and spiritually. U2 has a way with every song to do this. I have seen U2 in every tour since JoshuaTree, and each show is like 'RockChurch' These shows are not just a concert, but an experience that takes you places. U2360 had to be the best ever. Saw the opening night for US leg in Chicago - a spiritual show that still gives me goosebumps when I reminisce about that night.
nirossi - 05 October, 2012
Treasure (whatever happened to Pete the
It was back in the 80's when I first listened to this b-side. '84 I just started to know the band through the surprising Unforgettable Fire and then down to Boy October and War. At the time in Italy it was really difficult to find other than the official album (no internet, i-tunes or similar). So when me and my friends found this copy of New year's day single it was really a nice surprise to listen to this fresh B-side with all its teen-ager energy and urgency pushing out of the stereo speakers. Probably this is not the best song or single of U2 but also today when my hifi starts to play Treasure, automatically I raise the volume and start to sing...
alfonso189 - 04 October, 2012
"Where The Streets Have No Name"
I first saw U2 live in 1987 and during "The Joshua Tree Tour" they opened with street. It was a religious experience. The last time I saw them was in 2005 at Madison Square Garden and once again, it was a religious experience. There is something about hearing the opening organ part that makes one feel the glorious anticipation of the lights turning up when the drum part begins. I felt in tune with everyone of the 20000 people that were there. I hope that the band stays together long enough for me to take my son to a show. I want to share that moment with him. Whenever I see a clip of the Superbowl show, I cannot help but tear up. Thank you for such an inspirational piece of music.
styxgirl65 - 03 October, 2012
New Years Day
NYD took the band from the background and moved them into the forground of my consciousness. The song showed they had the staying power I was looking for in a group I wanted to follow over the years to come.
inthenameofu2 - 03 October, 2012
The unforgettable fire
Very haunting when you listen to it alone. Great song though. One of my favorites from u2
BonoasTheLizardKing - 02 October, 2012
With or Without You
I was in college. It seemed like forever since The Unforgettable Fire album had been released. We were all waiting – waiting – waiting – for the next album, the next song... then it came. Opening with a simple but memorable bass line and Bono's smooth beautiful vocals. Building and building, Edge's guitar chimes in, then culminating with Bono's pained and powerful "ooh ooh oooh ooohs". I remember being home on spring break and making a "loop tape" of the song from Long Island radio station WLIR. I could listen to it eleven times in a row and my friend Jason and I did just that. Over and over again. Of course we were only scratching the surface of the power and beauty that is Joshua Tree. Occasionally on a glorious spring or early summer day with "the sun so bright it leaves no shadows" I can still tap into that magic that was The Joshua Tree summer of 1987. Thank you boys for that once in a life time musical journey ;-)
Isaiah - 02 October, 2012
Hallelujah Here She Comes
I was stopped in my tracks when I put on the Desire single. At that point in time I purchased the record. I was so excited! Unwrapping the plastic and the smell do new vinyl and the paper record covering. And then............. The second song this song yet so simple was filled with inspiration and driven by character non the less an experience I will always remember -isaiah
seyaowpa - 30 September, 2012
Beautiful Day
I have MS and whenever I start feeling sorry for myself I listen to It's a beautiful day. It encourages me to look for the good things in my life and not focus on the bad. Thank you for this fabulous incentive to look on the bright side.
kmao - 30 September, 2012
lemon
in my world this song transports that berlin-vibe way more than the whole "achtung baby" album. a huge step ahead in the development of this band.
Lisamast - 29 September, 2012
"One"
Without a doubt this song takes me back to the feelings that were so strong back in 2001. U2 played the song at a Madison Square Garden concert on October 29th, 2001. As a New Yorker our emotions were so raw due to the terrorist attacks and when Bono sang the lyrics to the song while the names of the fallen and the missing were projected on a screen and accross the crowd we all felt as "One" with each other. It was an excellent and touching by our Irish brothers.
CacaU2 - 28 September, 2012
September 25th 1976
This day is more than a special day in our lives. September 25th 1976 was when it all began: Four boys with a dream couldn’t even imagine what they could reach. Angels who were sent by our Father to teach us to love more and more with their messages, which were simple and sincere. I always thank God for getting to listen to the songs, humbly trying to understand them, and for being part of this big fanbase that this wonderful band gotten to get through their career. Bono, Edge, Adam and Larry, my life wouldn’t be so amazing if you were not a part of it. Thank you very much! Cassia Canuto - CacaU2 - Caçapava/São Paulo - Brasil
veve2908 - 27 September, 2012
With or without you
I know I am not being the most original person by loving this song, but still I think it is kind of a masterpiece! It was Spring 1990, Caracas / Venezuela (where I grew up) I was 14 and my mother had just died of cancer a few weeks ago. I was sitting in a bus with my school friends coming back from a 5 day trip... all people who would become my best friends and are until now.... well, this guy played this tape and it was this song. Needless to say I immediately fell in love with the song, with the band who deliveres half the soundtrack of all my life and of course with the guy who played the song. He was my first serious crush .-) Song, band, first crush and friends are still very present and actually of vital importance to me. In those days I would believe I couldn't live without U2. Today, though older and one would say wiser, I sometimes still feel the same .-)
jbroxu - 26 September, 2012
When love comes to town and Electrical s
I don't have a fantastic story or even a funny story for my picks. The "When Love Comes To Town" single was just pure magic the remixes of some of the songs, the art, just amazing. As far as "Electrical Storm" goes it is my favorite U2 song bar none! Even the video is beautiful.
DavidBentick - 26 September, 2012
Where the Streets Have no Name
I had been avidly listening to U2 since 1996 when I was 15 after buying my first album that was Achtung Baby, little did I know to what I had missed out on in those previous years. A year later attending college meeting new people, falling in love and fulfilling my passion for a career in Tv/Film production, I witnessed the event that would for ever change my life. Something that would shape my thoughts visions hopes and dreams, picking up a cd album at my local store, I instantly made the purchase and took it home. For the rest of my college years I would and always will listen to those tunes. The spine tingling where the Streets have no Name would conjure up visions of epic scenery, wind swept landscapes and images of my time at college. It created a sense of magic that filled the air and still does to this day. Never did I realise that you could paint a picture with sound, realising what these four individuals created inspired me towards my own journey. Through my own experiences this song has shaped every moral part of me, right down to my core adding to my persona of being the best individual I can be and achieving every dream I envisage. The song is a fine example of the journey we all make through life, from the silence comes this great eruption of sound being born. Through the passing of time we see our selves taking life's knocks, up's and down's as we venture are way towards the unknown, the sound ends as quietly as it began. This is the stuff dreams are made of...
Dragontart - 26 September, 2012
October
My favourite song will always be October... its the month I was born and freakishly, is track 7 on the CD... when I first saw 7 October on the back I just knew I would love it... thanks U2 :)
CEL76 - 26 September, 2012
Walk On
I became a U2 fan when I was 8. I'm about to turn 36 and I'm still in love with them. I attribute my faith in part to U2. Their music was the first thing to ever bring me into the spiritual world, and awaken that side of me. However if I have to pick a song that means more to me than any other, I would have to say Walk On. When All That You Can't Leave Behind was released it coincided with an incredibly hard time in my life. That album played a large part in my healing, and Walk On was the biggest part of that.
alexisaurus - 25 September, 2012
The Fly
I had just turned 13 that summer of ‘91, a particularly vulnerable time in anyone’s life. I was nonchalantly watching the local access channel’s music video program (an MTV for those without cable), when on came a new video. Bum-bum-buh-bub-ba-buda bom-ba, Bum-bum-buh-bub-ba-buda bom-ba. Who was this sunglassed (masked!) man?!? Up to this point in my life, I had had innocent little-girl crushes—but they all paled in the discovery of Bono. It was literally the beginning of my sexual awakening. To this day, listening to The Fly-- and all of Achtung Baby!, actually-- reminds me of all the warm, tingly feelings in my stomach that the video sent through me then, as it still does now. Seems appropriate that The Fly would be responsible for a young girl’s seduction; he is calling from hell, after all.
jfreel - 25 September, 2012
The Fly
driving to london through the night with radio 1 promising to play the single all morning. eventually arrived at my destination just as it was played for the first time and my initial thoughts were " what have they done"? Turns out it was the best thing they ever done and still a live classic to this day
yoko_mono - 25 September, 2012
With Or Without You
I saw the video and I clearly remember thinking who are these "old "guys"(I was 11, everyone looked old to me). I thought the song was strange and I couldn't really make sense of the lyrics, but of course something about it stuck in my brain. I waited to hear it again on the radio or maybe catch it on tv again. Eventually I met some older kids that had purchased the Joshua Tree and I made a tape copy of the it along with War and The Unforgettable Fire. I was just starting to learn to play guitar at that time and I spent hours on end trying to play like The Edge and sing like Bono. Everyone musician or band has someone that changed their life, and for me it was U2. I love so many bands, but U2 was MY band, the ones I grew up with. It was an amazing experience when I finally got to meet the band and Bono signed my copy of The Joshua Tree lp. U2 plays the soundtrack to my life.
NancyLovesMusicLovesNancy - 25 September, 2012
Joseph Arthur in the key of Neil Young
Thats how I sing Not that there is anything wrong with that cuz I love Joseph Arthur and Neil Young but Im not trained in singing I am a trained actress though In acting class my coach asked me to prepare a poem I recited MAGNIFICENT he loved it and then asked me to do it again - but sing it Soooo that's how I sang it in a very quiet voice, as if to myself like Joseph Arthur in the key of Neil Young He loved it even more I don't back down in acting class
mph66 - 25 September, 2012
40
It was 1984. I was a senior in high school, at a party with some friends. My brother and a friend called, asking for a ride. I told him we couldn't go get him, as we had been drinking. On the wy to the party, he and his friend were attacked. His assailant kicked him in the head repeatedly with steel-toed boots. That night, my father came to get me. He told me my brother was in the hospital. He was in a coma. For the next two months, my sadness and grief were unspeakable. At the time, my brother and I shared a craze for this great new band, U2. In the hospital, they told me to talk to my brother, that he could hear me. So one day, I brought my Walkman and his favorite tape, U2, "Under a Blood Red Sky." When "40" was playing, he opened his eyes, and spoke. I can't hear "I waited patiently for the Lord, he declined and heard my cry" without weeping, even now, 28 years later. I've always wanted to thank Bono, Edge, Larry, and Adam for the song. Thank God for the miracle.
sakajo - 25 September, 2012
Electrical Strom
Great Voice, great clip, the body, the place! Goosebumps everytime I hear it!
keirdubois - 24 September, 2012
The Fly
This may or may not be true, but I swear I first heard it on 95.5 KLOS from L.A. on Uncle Joe Bensen's show, and it rocked my face off. Caught the song halfway through, during Edge's wild and crazy solo, and when the DJ announced it as the new U2 single, I couldn't believe it. I mean, wasn't U2 that band of dorky guys in cowboy hats that my dad was into because they played with BB King? No way that these were the same guys—and yet they were. When I bought the single I was fascinated by the red monster on the cover. What WAS that thing? Later when I got all the others, and they made the image of the band in the Trabant, another light clicked on in my head—I think that's when I first began paying attention to design (which is what I do for a living now). And the B side, yikes. I had no idea who Alex was or why he went to hell (OC suburban kid me had never heard of Clockwork Orange), but it sounded like exactly what the title advertised. Even the Lounge mix was worth the price of admission. You have to understand that there was no middle ground for freshmen California white rock kids between heavy metal/OC punk and the old dead hippie music of our parents. I didn't understand rap at the time, I didn't hate life enough to need metal or punk, and I also wasn't mature enough to go retro and really understand my parents' music yet. But "The Fly" hit the sweet spot, for me. It rocked, it soared, it swaggered, it slithered, it shrieked, and best of all it had a devastatingly gorgeous sister named "Ultraviolet" and a mother with a spinning head. I was starting high school and just about to turn 15. I was reading crazy things like "Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas" for the first time. When I got my first bass guitar, I learned Adam's part immediately so I could rumble the rafters with my tiny 15-watt amp. I was young and pretty and dumb and had all my hair and wore a pea coat like Sting and girls swooned at my French name. And I had "The Fly." It was perfect then, and perfect now—I've enjoyed seeing it grow up on tour during the past 20 years, and in what I can only assume was karmic payback, the 360 show I decided not to attend (Anaheim) was the one where U2 debuted "The Fly" on that tour. Touché, boyos. I deserved that one.
southsidefrog - 24 September, 2012
Sunday, Bloody Sunday
First heard this song in a store and knew instantly it was U2. In October of 2001, I saw the band at the United Center in Chicago. Bono caught an American flag just before he sang the lyrics "wipe your tears away" was an emotional and powerful moment. Always liked this song and that image from 2001 comes into my mind whenever I hear it. My second favorite single of the band is "Out of Control"--amazing that an 18-year-old Bono wrote it and 30 odd years later, it still delivers when they play it live.
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