Their name, their songs, his singing… Bono vented during a recent podcast interview.
Is this imposter syndrome or just annoyingly down-to-earth humility? The ‘Awards Chatter’ podcast recently interviewed Bono and The Edge from U2 about their work for the Sing 2 soundtrack.
During the chat, Bono revealed he turns off the radio whenever a U2 song comes on and he gets embarrassed. Most of his vocal performances “make me cringe a little bit.” He says he only recently actually learned how to sing, and shared a story of another artist’s criticism of him:
Bono went on to recall how the late Robert Palmer told U2 bassist Adam Clayton: “‘God, would you ever tell your singer to just take down the keys a little bit, he’d do himself a favour and he’d do us all a favour who have to listen to him.’
There were times early in their career that Bono did like the name U2, but summarizes the past 40 plus years with “I still don’t really like the name.”
But is all this embarrassment helpful for an artist? Bono explains:
“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.”