In an excerpt shared with The Guardian, Bono revealed that Apple CEO Tim Cook was initially averse to the idea of paying for several digital copies of Songs Of Innocence and giving them to iTunes users for free, but the band ultimately persuaded Cook to go through with the idea.
At the time of its release, many were chagrined to find Songs Of Innocence on their iPhones. Bono recalled some social media comments saying “Woke up this morning to find Bono in my kitchen, drinking my coffee, wearing my dressing gown, reading my paper,” as well as, “The free U2 album is overpriced.”
“If just getting our music to people who like our music was the idea, that was a good idea,” said Bono in the memoir. “But if the idea was getting our music to people who might not have had a remote interest in our music, maybe there might be some pushback. At first, I thought this was just an internet squall, but quickly realized we’d bumped into a serious discussion about big tech. I take full responsibility. Not Guy O, not Edge, not Adam, not Larry, not Tim Cook, not Eddy Cue. I’d thought if we could just put our music within reach of people, they might choose to reach out toward it. Not quite.”
Surrender: 40 Songs, One Story hits shelves 11/1.