LISTEN: Bono’s ‘60 songs that saved my life’ playlist

Playlist 15/05/2020

Legendary U2 singer Bono turned 60 last week (10th May), and to celebrate he unveiled a playlist titled ‘60 Songs That Saved My Life’ playlist.

“These are some of the songs that saved my life. The ones I couldn’t have lived without… the ones that got me from there to here, zero to 60… through all the scrapes, all manner of nuisance, from the serious to the silly… and the joy, mostly joy,” said Bono of the playlist.

The singer also penned a “fan letter” of gratitude to each of the artists included on his playlist, with the first batch of typewritten letters — to Billie Eilish, Kraftwerk, Daft Punk with Pharrell and Nile Rodgers, and more — available to read now on U2.com. He has promised the rest of letters will follow in the coming weeks. 

“I wanted to thank the artists and everyone who helped make them… They were doing the same for me…,” Bono added.

The songs on the ‘60 Songs That Saved My Life’ playlist range from “formative 45s” that Bono listened to in his youth to collaborations with some of his musical heroes (Kendrick Lamar, Frank Sinatra, Luciano Pavarotti) to contemporary tracks by artists like Beyonce, Lady Gaga and Billie Eilish.

“I step inside your song and it’s a black beauty, achingly awesomely vulnerable and terrifying, fearless and worrisome, but you are not worried by all that,” Bono wrote to Eilish and her brother Finneas of ‘Everything I Wanted’.

Bono’s playlist also includes ‘Neon Lights’ by Kraftwerk, whose co-founder Florian Schneider sadly passed away late last month. “‘Neon Lights’ is a song that brought into being a future that has now become so familiar, it is easy to forget just how strange it was,” Bono wrote. “This perfectly constructed pop song.” Bono added of Schneider, “May he rest in peace.”

The U2 frontman also penned a letter to David Bowie’s son Duncan Jones after including the late singer’s “Life on Mars?” on his playlist. “Thanks for sharing your father with so many souls, like me, who he filled up to the brim,” Bono wrote.

You can listen to the full playlist below.

Bono’s 60 Songs That Saved My Life

1. Luciano Pavarotti, Bono & Zucchero – Miserere

2. Sex Pistols – Anarchy In the UK

3. Kanye West – Black Skinhead

4. Billie Eilish – everything i wanted

5. David Bowie – Life on Mars?

6. The Beatles – I Want to Hold your Hand

7. Ramones – Swallow My Pride

8. The Clash – Safe European Home

9. Public Enemy – Fight The Power

10. Patti Smith – People Have the Power

11. John Lennon – Mother

12. The Rolling Stones – Ruby Tuesday

13. Elton John – Daniel

14. Andrea Bocelli- Con Te Partiro

15. Elvis Presley – Heartbreak Hotel

16. Johnny Cash – Hurt

17. This Mortal Coil – Song to the Siren

18. Kraftwerk – Neon Lights

19. The Fugees – Killing Me Softly With His Song

20. Prince – When Doves Cry

21. Daft Punk feat Pharrell Williams & Nile Rodgers – Get Lucky

22. Madonna – Ray of Light

23. JAY-Z feat Alicia Keys – Empire State of Mind

24. Talking Heads – Love Goes to Building on Fire

25. Lou Reed – Satellite of Love

26. The Verve – Bitter Sweet Symphony

27. Joy Division – Love Will Tear Us Apart

28. New Order – True Faith

29. R.E.M. – Nightswimming

30. Adele – Chasing Pavements

31. Arcade Fire – Wake Up

32. Pixies – Monkey Gone to Heaven

33. Oasis – Live Forever

34. Iggy Pop – Lust for Life

35. Gavin Friday – Angel

36. Massive Attack – Safe From Harm

37. Kendrick Lamar feat U2 – XXX

38. Bob Marley & The Walers – Redemption Song

39. Echo and the Bunnymen – Rescue

40. Nirvana – Smells Like Teen Spirit

41. Pearl Jam – Jeremy

42. Bob Dylan – Most of the Time

43. Beyoncé feat Kendrick Lamar – Freedom

44. Depeche Mode – Walking In My Shoes

45. Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds – Into My Arms

46. Simon & Garfunkel – The Sounds of Silence

47. Coldplay – Clocks

48. INXS – Never Tear Us Apart

49. New Radicals – You Get What You Give

50. Angélique Kidjo – Agolo

51. Lady Gaga – Born This Way

52. Frank Sinatra & Bono – Under My Skin

53. David Bowie – Heroes

54. Simple Minds – New Gold Dream (81/82/83/84)

55. Sinéad O’Connor – You Made Me The Thief Of Your Heart

56. Van Morrison – A Sense of Wonder

57. Bruce Springsteen – There Goes My Miracle

58. Daniel Lanois – The Maker

59. Peter Frampton – Show Me The Way

60. Bee Gees – Immortality – Demo Version