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Old 03-16-2005, 01:24 AM   #1
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who writes most of the lyrics?

I know this is gonna sound like a really stupid question, but who in the band writes most or all of the lyrics? Bono?
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Old 03-16-2005, 01:26 AM   #2
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Yes buddy - Bono's the mainman, but Edge did begin to take a small hand in the songwriting from the early 90's(?) I think.
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Old 03-16-2005, 01:34 AM   #3
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Cool. What songs did The Edge help out in?
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Old 03-16-2005, 01:36 AM   #4
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Bono most of the time, except

on Rattle and Hum, Edge wrote Van Diemen's land

on Zooropa Edge wrote Numb, he and Bono co-wrote Dirty day

they share lyric credits on Pop

they co-wrote 3 songs on ATYCLB (Kite, Stuck, When I look...) and HTDAAB (Vertigo, Love and peace and Yahweh)
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Old 03-16-2005, 05:51 AM   #5
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Old 03-16-2005, 06:01 AM   #6
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The way I understand it, Edge did start writing Sunday bloody sunday but Bono re-shaped the lyrics as they were deemed to harsh.
(the start supposably being "don't talk to me about the rights of the IRA")
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Old 03-16-2005, 07:14 AM   #7
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salman rushdie wrote the lyrics for the ground beneath her feet
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Old 03-16-2005, 07:16 AM   #8
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Read the liner notes for each album.
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Old 03-16-2005, 07:51 AM   #9
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whats the difference between the songwriting being credited as Bono and edge and Bono with the edge
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Old 03-16-2005, 07:55 AM   #10
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Edge shares credit for Summer Rain.

In 2001 I saw an interview where Bono said that as the main songwriter he could claim a lot more of the band's royalties than the others, but they stayed with their agreement to split it 5 ways (with Paul McG) He said 'let's just say I'm a generous genius'

In The Kids are Alright, there is a scene where Pete T. tells the interviewer he gets more money for being the songwriter and the others jokingly shove away from him, like, 'well'! And when Keith shimmied back over to sit with him, Roger calls him a 'scab'
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Old 03-16-2005, 08:03 AM   #11
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I think the liner notes pretty much establish that Bono writes most of the lyrics.

But what I'd really want to know is if there are other "ghost professional songwriters" who actually help Bono with his lyrics. I doubt there are any though, but you can never know. Perhaps someone here knows better.

Cheers,

J
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Old 03-16-2005, 08:16 AM   #12
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Good point jick.

I would think that just as for the music, they probably employ a few close individuals to act as researchers for lyrical ideas, musical sounds, etc. At the very least they have editors for the lyrics. They are too big and too much is at stake for them not to run it by anybody else but the four of them in the band.
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Old 03-16-2005, 09:00 AM   #13
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Bonoe- Lyrics
The Edge- main music man
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Old 03-16-2005, 09:13 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally posted by jick
But what I'd really want to know is if there are other "ghost professional songwriters" who actually help Bono with his lyrics. I doubt there are any though, but you can never know. Perhaps someone here knows better.

Cheers,

J
I don't think so. Not that Bono is perfect and I can't believe it, but that the last 3 albums have had such moments of lameness, cheesiness and outright embarrassing lyrics, from 'chewing bubble gum' and 'my mammy' to 'mole digging up my soul' to 'cool down mama' and rhyming table and able, it's hard to believe anyone would pay for that stuff So no, I think it's Bono all the way. Only a huge established star like him could get away with it. (Paul McCartney's latter solo work is another example of this)

No offense overall, don't mean to bash, love most of Bono's and Paul's lyrics, just had to point that out


On the other hand, this reminds me of something else. I am all but totally convinced ghost writers now do most of the Stephen King books. Why? Look, over the years the quantity of books has gone way up (and as a closet writer I find this humanly impossible knowing what goes into creating a storyline/characters for a novel) while at the same time the quality has diminished. He may write some of them, but the days of "Carrie" "The Stand" and "Pet Semetary" (good books that came out at longer time intervals) are over.

What I think happened is that the publisher paid him a HUGE amount for the use of his name, and got unknown writers with similar styles to write most of the stuff. See, this way, those guys who could not have made a career for themselves as unknowns get a share of the money, King gets big bucks, and the publisher uses the King name to sell books people may not have bought by Joe Blowe (or Michelle Unknown) This is not out of the question. It happened with the RL Stine "Goosebumps" series, and after VC Andrews died, her heirs sold her name to the publisher to get ghostwriters to continue in a similar (and best selling!) style. The difference is, while these are known, the King thing I'm sure (if it's true) is being kept big time hush hush
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Old 03-16-2005, 09:30 AM   #15
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You always have such interesting, non flag-waving takes on U2, Kitten. I love it. Good comparison to McCartney's later crap, too.
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Old 03-16-2005, 09:41 AM   #16
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Please dont just point out the latest work by U2 though as being things that have bad lyrics. There is bad lyrics in points of every album throughout U2s career from Boy to Bomb. But as I have said before music cant always come down to lyrics because if a melody is not there the song isnt really there, and that is where U2 have been strong throughout.

Overall I think U2 only really had 2 albums where I would call them lyrically great and that is Joshua Tree and Achtung Baby....every other album has a few lyrically weak tracks sprinkled throughout.
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Old 03-16-2005, 10:09 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally posted by U2Kitten


On the other hand, this reminds me of something else. I am all but totally convinced ghost writers now do most of the Stephen King books. Why? Look, over the years the quantity of books has gone way up (and as a closet writer I find this humanly impossible knowing what goes into creating a storyline/characters for a novel) while at the same time the quality has diminished. He may write some of them, but the days of "Carrie" "The Stand" and "Pet Semetary" (good books that came out at longer time intervals) are over.

What I think happened is that the publisher paid him a HUGE amount for the use of his name, and got unknown writers with similar styles to write most of the stuff. See, this way, those guys who could not have made a career for themselves as unknowns get a share of the money, King gets big bucks, and the publisher uses the King name to sell books people may not have bought by Joe Blowe (or Michelle Unknown) This is not out of the question. It happened with the RL Stine "Goosebumps" series, and after VC Andrews died, her heirs sold her name to the publisher to get ghostwriters to continue in a similar (and best selling!) style. The difference is, while these are known, the King thing I'm sure (if it's true) is being kept big time hush hush
I should not respond to this as this should be about U2, but oh well. I really doubt that King uses ghost writers. His voice has slowly evolved over the years and I see no major shifts at any point in time. As for quality and quantity, you kind of answered the question yourself. As he upped the quantity, the quality sometimes suffered. Although, I really don't think Carrie is all that well written. Some of his best language has been more recent but he seems to running out of great ideas.

On the off chance he uses ghost writers, I am positive The Dark Tower series is all him. He would NEVER let anyone else touch that.
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Old 03-16-2005, 02:23 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally posted by U2Kitten


I don't think so. Not that Bono is perfect and I can't believe it, but that the last 3 albums have had such moments of lameness, cheesiness and outright embarrassing lyrics, from 'chewing bubble gum' and 'my mammy' to 'mole digging up my soul' to 'cool down mama' and rhyming table and able, it's hard to believe anyone would pay for that stuff So no, I think it's Bono all the way. Only a huge established star like him could get away with it. (Paul McCartney's latter solo work is another example of this)

No offense overall, don't mean to bash, love most of Bono's and Paul's lyrics, just had to point that out
Just to be fair...

There were also some weak lyrics on other albums - in fact, I find all of "With or Without You" rather weak.

Analogously, while you pointed out some weak lyrics on the last 3 albums, I could also point out some brilliant ones, such as "blessings not just for the ones who kneel...luckily" or just about all of "Walk On" or the brilliance of "Wake Up Dead Man".

And while I ripped on a JT era song above, clearly that album has some of Bono's most brilliant lyrics.

In other words, I find Bono both weak and strong on ALL albums. And this pattern has continued to present day. Hence I feel this is Bono's work.

Besides, as Edge is "helping" more with lyrics, who's to say that some of the things we like least aren't actually Edge inspired/written?
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Old 03-16-2005, 04:34 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally posted by U2Kitten
[B]

had such moments of lameness, cheesiness and outright embarrassing lyrics, from 'chewing bubble gum' and 'my mammy' to 'mole digging up my soul' to 'cool down mama' and rhyming table and able,
So funny! Yes, lame indeed. How about this one: The blind leading the blonde" AAAA!!!

I have to confess though, I love "cool down mama" It's funky!
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Old 03-16-2005, 05:38 PM   #20
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Wasn't it Edge who came up with the title "I Still Haven't Found"? Seems like he's been an influence for a while....
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