Why Bono Is Now 'Embarrassed' By U2

U2 is one of the most successful (and critically acclaimed) rock bands of all time, but its lead singer says he hates their name and is embarrassed by many of their songs, according to the Times. Bono's antics can certainly be a bit over-the-top (he's spoken about his "messianic complex" in the past, per the Irish Sun), but the thing he specifically is embarrassed about in this interview is not, say, putting that U2 album on everyone's iPhones, but rather his perception of his singing and lyrical ability — in fact, Bono claims he only learned how to sing recently.

"I've been in the car when one of our songs has come on the radio and I've been the color of, as we say in Dublin, scarlet," he told the podcast Awards Chatter. " I'm just so embarrassed." According to Bono, he said his "Irish macho" voice sounds "strained" on early songs, and even earned him reproach from the "Addicted to Love" singer Robert Palmer.

Did we ever change a key?

According to Bono (per the Times), Robert Palmer told Adam Clayton, the bassist of U2, that Bono was singing in the wrong pitch for him."God, would you ever tell your singer to just take down the keys a little bit," Bono recounted. "He'd do himself a favor and he'd do us all a favor who have to listen to him."

"But I was thinking out of my body," Bono added. "I wasn't thinking about singing. I didn't really think about changing keys. Did we ever change a key?" He did add that though he doesn't like most of his vocal performances, he does appreciate his take on "Vertigo," the 2004 single from "How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb" (per Genius). "It's the way it connects with the crowd," he explained of his singing on the track.

In the same interview, Bono admitted that he still didn't like the name of the band, which was intended to sound like a spy boat but actually just sounds like "this kind of acquiescence."