Wednesday, April 19

U2 Contract Demos '78-'80

Years before Bono was a comrade of popes and presidents, U2 was just another struggling band looking for a record deal. Pretty hard to imagine these days, huh? Here we have a relic of that period. Available on C&T today are a selection of demos distributed by U2 while in search of a record contract. These recordings come from a period a full decade before Rattle and Hum. This is not the complete set of U2's contract demos, but they're all I have in my possession. These are pretty raw, and vary somewhat in quality. Still, they're an interesting peek into the early history of the rock 'n roll monster that is now U2.

U2 - The Fool [November 1, 1978; Keystone Studios, Dublin]
U2 - Street Mission [November 1, 1978; Keystone Studios, Dublin]
U2 - The Magic Carpet [February 1979; Eamon Andrews 4-Track studio, Dublin]
U2 - Alone in the Light [February 1979; Eamon Andrews 4-Track studio, Dublin]
U2 - Boy-Girl [Mid-1979; Windmill Lane Studio; Dublin]
U2 - Another Day [December 1979; CBS Studios, London]
U2 - The Dream is Over [December 1979; CBS Studios, London]
U2 - Touch [April 1980; Windmill Lane Studio, Dublin]
U2 - An Cat Dubh [October 14, 1980; KRO Studios, Hilversum, Holland]

Apparently these demos did some good, as U2's debut album Boy was released in October 1980. If some U2 superfans out there (I absolutely do not qualify) have more info to add, feel free.

For more on U2, visit their MySp.... just kidding.


Blogger MyExBestFriend said...

Awesome Rich - Did you see them here? I was there but all the way up in the rafters....still an awesome show. Thanks for the tracks!

10:03 AM

Blogger Rich said...

Nope. I'd never pay what they ask for tickets. Same reason I haven't seen a number of "big" bands that I would like to check out. Just not worth it to me when I can see 4-8 loaded bills at smaller venues for the same coin.

Anyway, the only U2 I even own is that greatest hits collection from a few years back. I know they're considered a "great" band, but they've never really piqued my interest. I do like "Sweetest Thing" far too much, but I may just be a complete wuss.

10:16 AM

Blogger c said...

Cool post. I love the early stuff - Bono's voice is so tiny.

As far as ticket prices, I hear you on that. i will say, though, that it was less than $50 for GA tickets on this past tour, and I attended several shows at that price. I find it hard to believe anyone who had those tickets could complain about the cost. I had a bottle of water poured on my head by Bono for that price. They wouldn't even have had to play any songs and it would have been worth it at that point!

(Admittedly a super fan....)

2:22 PM

Blogger Rich said...

Thing is, I don't think I'd pay $25 for U2. I'd only go because I'm curious, not because I'm a fan. I won't fault them for charging that -- I imagine they could double it and still sell out the venue. I don't dislike U2, I just don't like them that much.

2:33 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I went cold on these guys around Unforgetable Fire. Still, I love their old stuff. This is great. Think you'd ever post a copy of stuff from their first record (U2/3, or something like that)?

8:11 PM

Blogger Rich said...

If I had it. But I have no idea what you're talking about. Heh.

8:13 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've never heard of U2...

6:24 PM

Blogger daniel said...

Awesome - thanks man.

4:22 AM

Blogger The Falconer said...

Finally some good music to download on this site. :)

Between these tracks and the Guns and Roses downloads you're in danger of losing your indie fanboy status.

Tread carefully!

9:16 PM

Blogger Taylor said...

Good post. Street Mission is awesome. It has one of the edge's best and longest guitar solo. I saw U2 in chicago last year and it was definitely worth the 50 dollars.

3:50 PM

Blogger Taylor said...

U2-3 wasn't an album it was their first single for the song Out of Control. Boy/Girl and Stories for Boys were b-sides.

3:53 PM

Anonymous Social said...

This is great. And as coincidence would have it, you posted it 26 years to the day that U2 played a dumpy little bar in Columbus, Ohio. I was twelve, my older sister snuck me in. What a great night. Thanks for reminding me how old I am.

3:05 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

muy bueno me ecnnanto nunca los habia escuchado gracias totales

2:25 AM

Blogger merz said...

Fantastic post, thanks for the early, early stuff!


10:49 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Rich - I'm a big U2 fan and recently started searching for the U2 Contract Demos online but it seems I've missed the opportunity to hear and or download this from here. What are the chances of these songs being posted again?

11:21 AM

Blogger Rich said...

Doubtful. I'm not a big fan, and they generate a lot of hit-and-run traffic.

12:38 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sorry to hear it Rich, but thanks for your response.

4:39 PM

Anonymous Danny said...

Hi, I love U2's old demos and have been fortunate enough to attain a copy of "I Realized", a really old demo from 1978. I think this is pretty rare material, as I've never seen it anywhere on the web. I also have "The Magic Carpet" and "The Dream is Over."

5:56 PM

Anonymous Rager1969 said...

"I Realized" is also known as "False Prophet", which I believe to be the correct song title.

8:18 PM


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