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Two of the biggest bands in history are to release a joint single to benefit the rebuilding of New Orleans. Green Day and U2 got together for dinner in February to try and think of a project suitable for this cause. Seven months later, the bands met again in London at the studios in Abbey Road made famous by The Beatles, and tried a cover of ‘The Saints Are Coming’, originally recorded by The Skids in 1978.

On September 25th, Green Day and U2 gave the song its first live show at the reopening of the Louisiana Superdome, to support the New Orleans Saints’ first home game in the NFL since the Katrina disaster.

The Saints themselves had said they would like to play U2’s hit song ‘Beautiful Day’ before each match. So, U2 themselves performed the song to end the night’s pre-game show. “It’s a good song,” the Edge said. “I hope … for New Orleans it’s like the past is laid to rest and from now on, OK, we have a lot of problems to get over but now the party starts so ‘Beautiful Day’ is probably a fitting song.”

Before the night’s big game, Green Day took the stage and performed their hit single ‘Wake Me Up When September Ends’. Armstrong chose this song because “I think the sort of thing that it resonates is hope, you know.”

U2’s The Edge has already been making headlines with his charity Music Rising, a charity that replaces instruments lost by professional musicians in the disaster. This is something that Green Day front-man Billie Joe Armstrong is completely behind; “I think every musician who earns money doing what they do owes a little bit of a debt to New Orleans.”

“One year later, people continue to be devastated by Katrina’s effects,” Billie Joe Armstrong said in a news release. “We hope that by collaborating with U2, we’ll remind the public that people of the Gulf Coast are still suffering and still need help to rebuild their lives.”

The song will be released for digital download on October 30th and as a CD single on November 6th.

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