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Bono says every U2 member has ‘thought about walking away’

‘It is the right instinct to question whether this should still be going and what it demands of all four members’

By Hollie Geraghty

U2 promo shot
U2 (Photo: Olaf Heine).

U2 frontman Bono has revealed that every member has “thought about walking away” from the band at some point.

The Irish musician – real name Paul Hewson – made the revelation in the band’s new Disney+ documentary A Kind Of Homecoming (out March 17), in which he shares that quitting was a very real possibility in the past.

“I have certainly thought about walking away from U2, every member has. We have all thought about it,” he said, per The Daily Mail.

“It is the right instinct to question whether this should still be going and what it demands of all four members.

“But the reason why I want to go forward is something is stirring in my voice and my singing and the desire to write songs we don’t have yet. We are chasing the dragon of the song we can’t get.”

He added: “The real magic of U2 is that everything we needed, the people we needed, were always right there.”

Bono continued that he “tested the patience” of his bandmates due to his activism work.

“Friendship is deeply part of who we are, but you could lose that along the way. We had to work on it,” he explained.

U2 appear together on a couch at the Jimmy Kimmel Show
U2 (Picture: YouTube/ Jimmy Kimmel Live!).

“If you are in a rock and roll band, you don’t want to be in the photograph with some people who might have polarising opposite values you hold dear, and I did that to them.

“I am turning what we created as a band into currency that I chose to spend in these areas. By and large they support me, but I do know I test their patience.”

The Edge – real name David Howell Evans – also agreed that there had been “a lot of tension” at times, adding that it was “remarkable” the band had stayed together.

“The fact we are still together is a remarkable thing. We kind of grew up together and learnt how to be people of the world via the band.

“We are probably a little institutionalised by being in this thing a little too long. There are many times in the past I think we were pushing our look a little too far.”

He added: “It was hard for us. There was a lot of tension.”

Last month, the trailer for  Bono & The Edge: A Sort Of Homecoming, With Dave Letterman was released, which sees Bono and The Edge return to their hometown of Dublin with US talk show host David Letterman to reflect “on their journey as musicians and friends”.

“Traditional storytelling is part of Dublin,” Bono says in the trailer. “It’s in our music. Our songs, they’re still growing, they’re still emerging.”

“The question became, what is left when everything is stripped away? Where do you take it?” The Edge adds.

The documentary will coincide with the release of new album Songs Of Surrender, a collection of 40 seminal songs from the band’s career that have been reimagined and re-recorded.