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Throwback to 1987: Listen to Dave Fanning Interview U2 About The Joshua Tree

@U2, May 09, 2017
By: Scott Calhoun


Thirty years ago, RTE’s Dave Fanning stopped by U2’s rehearsal space at the Boland’s Mill in the Dublin docklands to interview the band ahead of the March 9, 1987 release of The Joshua Tree. It was late February, and the band was practicing for its upcoming Joshua Tree world tour, just as it is now, three decades on, but this time in Vancouver. 

Fanning talked with U2 about an album of songs that the world had not yet heard. The interview was for a promotional LP called “The U2 Talkie,” sent by Island Records to radio stations and record shops. Fanning chose six songs to play off the album during the  interview and asked the band to explain a bit about each one. No, Bono does not do all the talking — all four got a chance to introduce a song.

This was really the first time U2 talked publicly about the inspirations for some of the songs, and they also talked about the length of the album, the evolution of The Joshua Tree from The Unforgettable Fire, selecting the first single from the album (spoiler alert: Bono was interested in the relevancy of U2’s songs in 1987) and what the Joshua tree is (Larry: “It’s a big … tree. It’s a big bloody yoke in the desert”).

This interview, shared with @U2 by Dave Fanning, runs about 32.5 minutes. The original LP ran 56 minutes and played these six songs in full, but we’ve clipped each song after the first 15 to 20 seconds: “In God’s Country,” “With Or Without You,” “I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For,” “Where The Streets Have No Name,” “Red Hill Mining Town” and “Mothers Of The Disappeared.”

 (Photo courtesy Dave Fanning)

(c) @U2/Calhoun, 2017


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