Single Stories: Coldplay, “The Scientist”
A few days ago, Coldplay released their new concert album, LIVE IN BUENOS AIRES, and to celebrate the occasion, we thought we’d take a dive into their discography and spotlight one of the most notable singles of their semi-early career.
Written by Chris Martin, “The Scientist” evolved out of Martin’s appreciation of George Harrison’s debut solo album, ALL THINGS MUST PASS. While in the midst of compiling Coldplay’s second album, A RUSH OF BLOOD TO THE HEAD, Martin – who felt like the LP was missing something yet couldn’t quite nail down what it was missing – had a listen to the aforementioned Harrison album and, whilst staying in Liverpool one evening, decided to try and play “Isn’t It a Pity.” He failed, but in the process of the attempt, he came up with the chord sequence for “The Scientist,” which is – to borrow a song title from Elvis Costello – a brilliant mistake.
“The Scientist” definitely turned out to be the missing element that A RUSH OF BLOOD TO THE HEAD needed: the song was acclaimed by a number of different critics, was named to NME’s “150 Tracks of the Past 15 Years” in 2011, and was honored as the #54 song of the 2000s by Rolling Stone.
And lucky you, now you can hear a new live version of “The Scientist” on Coldplay’s LIVE IN BUENOS AIRES, so if it’s not on your Christmas list, then you’d better go scribble it at the bottom right now!
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