November 21, 1983 – Under a Blood Red Sky

This Day in U2 History

Four years before I even knew about their greatness, U2 released their first live album Under a Blood Red Sky on November 21, 1983. The fans have nicknamed the album ‘Red Rocks’ because it was recorded at Red Rocks Park and Amphitheater outside of Denver, Colorado – home of my beloved Denver Broncos. This performance was also made into a concert movie. Under a Blood Red Sky is significant to me and my U2 fandom because it was the first U2 music I owned. I bought the cassette tapes of The Joshua Tree and Under a Blood Red Sky on the same day back in 1987. I listened to those two tapes over and over again, and then eventually acquired the other four albums by the time Rattle and Hum came out a year later.

The Under a Blood Red Sky concert film was my first U2 concert ‘experience.’ It was the first time I saw U2 perform ‘live.’ I watched that concert over and over again. My favorites off Under a Blood Red Sky are “October” into “New Year’s Day,” “Sunday Bloody Sunday,” “Gloria” and “Party Girl.” That’s when I first heard and fell in love with “New Year’s Day,” and it’s still one of my favorites today. And to this day, I still hear Bono saying, “This song is not a rebel song. This song is ‘Sunday Bloody Sunday'” every time I hear “Sunday Bloody Sunday.” Under a Blood Red Sky live album and concert video is so ingrained in my head. You always remember your first.


While on the 360 Tour in 2011, I visited Red Rocks Park and saw all the U2 memorabilia from that fateful concert back in 1983.

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