Coldplay backs Cat Power‘s Chan Marshall in “Wish I Was Here,” a piano ballad written and recorded for Zach Braff‘s forthcoming film of the same name. (Wish I Was Here is also the directorial follow-up to 2004′s Garden State, the film that introduced The Shins to the masses.) Frontman Chris Martin‘s voice only surfaces about halfway through, after Marshall has already recalled a long, ugly night out, as if to comfort her.
Turns out, as essential as her voice is now, Cat Power wasn’t part of the original plan. Braff had sent Coldplay an early version of Wish I Was Here, only for the band to write the song and Martin to suggest that a woman sing it. “When Chris and I were talking, we both kind of simultaneously said, ‘Cat Power,’” Braff said to NPR. Marshall recorded the song in New York, then Martin added in his vocals later on.
The Wish I Was Here soundtrack, also featuring songs by Paul Simon and, yes, The Shins, is out July 15 on Columbia Records. Hear the lovely title track at NPR.
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