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