Looks like Bono isn’t a big fan of his own band’s music.
The Irish singer, 61, has been a part of U2 for 46 years, writing and singing many of the rock group’s hit singles.
But it turns out Bono feels shame for some of the songs that he and his bandmates have penned over the decades, as the Dublin native revealed in a recent episode of the Hollywood Reporter’s “Awards Chatter” podcast.
“I’ve been in the car when one of our songs has come on the radio and I’ve been the color of, as we say in Dublin, scarlet,” he said in an interview along with bandmate The Edge. “I’m just so embarrassed.”
He continued: “The one that I can listen to the most is ‘Miss Sarajevo’ with Luciano Pavarotti. Genuine, most of the other ones make me cringe a little bit,” adding that the tune he “probably” is “proudest” of is “Vertigo.”
Songwriting wasn’t the only thing he dissed. Regarding the name U2, Bono wasn’t particularly fond of it in the beginning. It was their first manager, Paul McGuinness, who got them to keep the name by telling them it was “great” and would “look good on a T-shirt — a letter and a number.”
And Bono apparently still harbors an aversion to it.
“I didn’t realize that The Beatles was a bad pun, either,” he said. “In our head, it was like the spy plane, U-boat, it was futuristic — as it turned out to imply this kind of acquiescence, no, I don’t like that name. I still don’t really like the name.”
Bono is also the biggest critic of his own voice.
“I only became a singer, like, recently; maybe it hasn’t happened yet for some people’s ears and I understand that,” Bono said.
He even recalled a time when singer Robert Palmer reportedly told U2 bassist Adam Clayton in the 1980s, “God, would you ever tell your singer to just take down the keys a little bit? He’d do himself a favor, his voice a favor, and he’d do us all a favor who have to listen to him.”
During the podcast, Bono seemed to agree. “I was thinking out of my body. I wasn’t thinking about singing,” he said. “I didn’t really think about changing keys. Did we ever change a key?”
Bono continued to rip his band.
“I do think U2 pushes out the boat on embarrassment quite a lot, and maybe that’s the place to be as an artist — you know, right at the edge of your level of embarrassment,” he added.