U2’S “The Joshua Tree” was released on this day, March 9th, 1987. Probably my favorite album of the 1980’s and one of my Top 15 albums of all time. I got it the day it came out and listened to it many times a day for a period of months. This was the album that sent U2 from a ‘contender’ to the greatest band in the world.

The album would go on in the United States to sell 10 million copies, go to #1 on the Billboard album charts and yield two number one singles- “With or Without You’ and ” I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For” a third single “Where The Streets Have No Name” made it to #13. Those three songs were by the way the first three songs on the album- I cannot think of another album by anyone that had a stronger three songs to start an album off.  An interesting reason how this came to be- Steve Lillywhite who produced the first three albums was brought in to remix the singles. U2 gave the songs to Lillywhite’s wife to put the songs in order and she ordered them in the order she liked the songs. Back in the day when there were two sides to an album it was clear that the first side of the album was a lot stronger than the second side [not that the second side was bad.]

U2 was bringing “The Joshua Tree” Tour to the nearest city to where I live, Pittsburgh and I had to see them. A friend and I went up on a Friday afternoon and camped outside of Three River Stadium that night to be in line for tickets when they went on sale the next day. Go the tickets and when they came to Pittsburgh in the fall-on October 13th- got to see them. Set list for that night is listed below. They are doing a 30th year anniversary this summer- got tickets to see them in Pittsburgh and Cleveland. {I have seen them three times- The Joshua Tree Tour- The Zoo TV Tour in 1992 and again in 2011.

    1. Where The Streets Have No Name
    2. I Will Follow
    3. Trip Through Your Wires
    4. I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For / Exodus (snippet)
    5. MLK
    6. The Unforgettable Fire
    7. Exit / Van Morrison’s Gloria (snippet)
    8. In God’s Country
    9. Sunday Bloody Sunday
    10. Help
    11. People Get Ready
    12. Bad
    13. October
    14. New Year’s Day
    15. Pride (In The Name Of Love)


  1. Bullet The Blue Sky
  2. Running To Stand Still
  3. With Or Without You
  4. 40

3 responses to “U2 -THE JOSHUA TREE- RELEASED 30 YEARS AGO TODAY-3.9.87

  1. I agree with your point about elevating themselves to be one of the biggest bands on the planet and this is the album that did it. I’m going through all of their albums and reviewing them chronologically and I have a feeling that this will remain up there with their best.

    • The disappointing thing to me is their lack of productivity the past couple decades… It is 2017 and they have released one album since 2009.

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