Hawkmoon 269
by U2

Album: Rattle And Hum (1988)

Songfacts®:

  • The "269" in the title refers to the number of mixes they tried before getting it right in the studio - that number does not appear in the lyrics. The origin of "Hawkmoon" is less clear: The Edge once said that Hawkmoon is a town in North Dakota U2 passed through in 1986 on the Conspiracy Of Hope tour for Amnesty International, leading Bono to use it as a title, but there is no such town in either of the Dakotas. More likely, Bono got the idea from a collection of short stories by Sam Shepard called Hawk Moon, originally published in 1973.
  • U2 were recording at Sunset Sound studios in Hollywood when Bono came up with the lyrics for this song. Running 6:22, it's a story of desire and desperation. Bono was enjoying the nightlife in the area and was influenced by the seedy scenes in Los Angeles. He was also influenced by his hangover, which is why he came up with lines like:

    When the night has no end
    And the day yet to begin
    As the room spins around
    I need your love


    Bono spends much of the song repeating the line, "I need your love."
  • Bob Dylan played the Hammond organ on this track. The band connected with Dylan during their Joshua Tree tour when he joined them on stage at a show in Los Angeles. Dylan also co-wrote a song with the band called "Love Rescue Me," which like "Hawkmoon 269," appears on Rattle And Hum.

Comments: 5

  • Eugene from Ireland Bono once said hawkmoon was his favourite u2 song.
  • Greg from Harrington Park, NjThe choir I believe repeats You meet your love in the heartland, you meet your love in the heartland. I could be wrong though but that is what I have read... I believe the inside lyrics in the liner notes state this as well...
  • Daan from Tegelen, Netherlandsactually it's in the heat of the love in the heart in the heat of the love in the heart in the heat of the love in the heart etc.
  • Jeff Jacobs from Wantagh, NyAt the end of this song, the Choir repeats, "I need all the love in your heart and I need all the love in your heart, etc etc"
  • James from Westchester, EnglandWhat does the choir repeat at the end of this song?
see more comments

Editor's Picks

Elton John

Elton JohnFact or Fiction

Does he have beef with Gaga? Is he Sean Lennon's godfather? See if you can tell fact from fiction in the Elton John edition.

Joe Jackson

Joe JacksonSongwriter Interviews

Joe talks about the challenges of of making a Duke Ellington tribute album, and tells the stories behind some of his hits.

Van Dyke Parks

Van Dyke ParksSongwriter Interviews

U2, Carly Simon, Joanna Newsom, Brian Wilson and Fiona Apple have all gone to Van Dyke Parks to make their songs exceptional.

Dan Reed

Dan ReedSongwriter Interviews

Dan cracked the Top 40 with "Ritual," then went to India and spent 2 hours with the Dalai Lama.

Kerry Livgren of Kansas

Kerry Livgren of KansasSongwriter Interviews

In this talk from the '80s, the Kansas frontman talks turning to God and writing "Dust In The Wind."

Commercials

CommercialsFact or Fiction

Was "Ring Of Fire" really used to sell hemorrhoid cream?