Tomorrow
by U2

Songfacts®:

  • There are times when a songwriter doesn't know what a song is about until after it is recorded. This song was a case of mistaken meaning. U2 frontman Bono says that when he wrote the lyrics, which detail a black car by the side of the road and a knock on the door, he thought he was writing about those who died in the conflict in Northern Ireland. After the song was released on the October album, he realized that the song was about his mother's death - she passed away when he was 14. What Bono was writing about was the morning of her funeral, and how he didn't want to get in the black car and be a part of it.
  • Vinnie Kilduff played the Uileann Pipes, a traditional Irish instrument. He's played with a number of Irish artists, including Clannad, Steve Wickham, and The Waterboys.
  • An early U2 song, "Tomorrow" is part of their second album, October, which like their first (Boy) was produced by Steve Lillywhite, who was also working with Peter Gabriel and XTC around this time. The song was part of the setlist for U2's 1983 War tour, but they never played it again after that trek.
  • In 1996, Bono and bass player Adam Clayton played on a version by the Irish folk singer Donal Lunny.

Comments: 6

  • David from Woburn, MaI absolutely love the pipe solo at the beginning and the eventual crescendo in the middle of the song.
  • Steve from Torrance, CaAdam Clayton, from the book "Touch the Flame": "My favorite track always changes, but I think the melancholy of "Tomorrow" has it. It could have been a more finished song, but it's a very honest song. The pipes were a good direction to try. I'd like to use them more, but it becomes a caricature if you use them too much."
  • Steve from Torrance, CaBono, from the book "Touch the Flame": "I think the October album goes into areas that most rock'n'roll bands ignore. When I listen to it, something like "Tomorrow", it actually moves me. We were all affected by travelling and being away from home, which was a recurring theme on that album. Like "Tomorrow" - I never thought much about home until I was away from it."
  • Acrobat from Adelaide, AustraliaI thought it was about his MOTHERS funeral... not his grandfathers.
  • Chris from Melbourne, AustraliaThe song is actually about the funeral of Bono's maternal grandfather, in April 1974. The "black cars" and Bono's calls to his mother (who died while mourning at the funeral!!) are the major nuances here.
  • Erik from Davis, CaOh by the way, an Uilleann Pipe is the Irish bagpipe, also heard in Phil Collin's "True Colors" (himself a piper though he plays the Scottish Pipes) and throughout the "Braveheart," "The Devil's Own" and "Titanic" soundtracks, to name a few plus a multitude of commercials. Also used heavily in "Riverdance." In a sense, the Uilleann pipes aren't all that unusual. "Uilleann" means "elbow" in Irish Gaelic hence the use of bellows to wind the pipes and the bellows and bag are pumped by the elbows. They are about as loud as two violins and are capable of two octaves.
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