U2 ~ "Beautiful Day" 2000
"A man who has lost everything, but finds joy in what he still has."
Directed by Jonas Åkerlund
"Beautiful Day" Single by U2 from the album "All That You Can't Leave Behind"
Released: 9 October 2000
Recorded: HQ, in Dublin, Republic of Ireland
"Beautiful Day" was first single released from the All That You Can't Leave Behind album.
"Beautiful Day" is a song by the rock band U2. It is the first track from their 2000 album, All That You Can't Leave Behind, and it was released as the album's lead single. It was a commercial success, helping launch the album to multi-platinum status, and is one of U2's biggest hits to date. Like many tracks from All That You Can't Leave Behind, "Beautiful Day" harkens back to the group's past sound. The tone of The Edge's guitar was a subject of debate amongst the band members, as they disagreed on whether he should use a sound similar to that from their early career in the 1980s. Lead vocalist Bono explained that the upbeat track is about losing everything but still finding joy in what one has.
The song received positive reviews, and it became their fourth number-one single in the UK and their first number-one in the Netherlands. The song peaked at number 21 in the United States, the band's highest position since "Discothèque" in 1997. In 2001, the song won three Grammy Awards for Song of the Year, Record of the Year, and Best Rock Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal. The group has played "Beautiful Day" at every one of their concerts since the song's 2001 live debut on the Elevation Tour.
"Beautiful Day" was written in several stages, originating from a composition called "Always" (later released as a B-side) that the band created in a small room at Hanover Quay Studio. However, they were initially unimpressed with it, as guitarist The Edge said, "As a straight rock song, it was pretty ho-hum." After lead vocalist Bono came up with the "beautiful day" lyric, the song went in a different direction. The Edge's backing vocals for the chorus were improvised one night with co-producer Daniel Lanois, an addition he called "the key" to the chorus and its new lyrics.
According to Bono, "Beautiful Day" is about "a man who has lost everything, but finds joy in what he still has."
The song's video showed the band walking around in Paris' Charles de Gaulle International Airport, with scenes of the band playing on a runway interspliced with large jets taking off and landing overhead.
Bono – vocals, guitar, synthesisers.
The Edge – guitar, piano, vocals, synthesisers, strings.
Adam Clayton – bass guitar.
Larry Mullen, Jr. – drums, percussion.
U2: Bono, The Edge, Adam Clayton, Larry Mullen, Jr.http://www.u2.com
© 2000 Island Records UK.