12 Coldplay Months of 2012: March (A not so quiet month off)
Good Morning America, Happy Birthday Chris!
Early March is an eventful period for us Coldplayers, seeing as Chris’ birthday is on 2nd March! On 2012, this was also the date of yet another show promoting Mylo Xyloto. This time, Coldplay performed at the US early morning program Good Morning America. They played Yellow, Paradise and Charlie Brown:
[ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sr4eCGRclFc"]Coldplay Performs Hit Song 'Yellow' on 'GMA' - YouTube[/ame]
[ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=edRLOVoUKMc"]Coldplay-Paradise (Live Good Morning America) - YouTube[/ame]
[ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fsz4sryZ3XA"]Coldplay-Charlie Brown (Live Good Morning America) - YouTube[/ame]
Tweets posted along the event:
Band getting ready for Good Morning America. This was the view from the studio a little while ago... A pic.twitter.com/xK1VVcA4
You can still turn up to Times Square now to watch the @GMA performance through those windows (and on big screens). A pic.twitter.com/MJxlW2kk
The band, just before today's Good Morning America performance (with the birthday boy second left...) A pic.twitter.com/EJ8c7M7u
Later on, Roadie #42 wrote a blog about the program (#165). As usual, he posted very nice photos and his lenses didn’t fail to capture the signs some fans made to wish Chris happy birthday.
The roadie told us that he was enjoying again the live performance of Yellow, despite the song being even older than his years of working for the band. According to him, Charlie Brown and Paradise were just as great. However, not everything went that well afterwards.
Midway through the set, there was an interview. It was quite a funny one, as are many Coldplay interviews we’ve watched. On a sidenote, a nice quote from Chris:
What we bring these days is just a feeling of togetherness. We’re like a team, you know? You guys are as well. That’s why we enjoy everything so much: because we share all the bad things and the good things. That’s a bit cliché, but it’s all true.
Back on topic, an excerpt that turned out to be a fateful one – but only after some journalists distorted it:
[The name ‘Mylo Xyloto’] is just something that we thought looked really good, but, everywhere we go around the world, people pronounce it in the most crazy ways and we’re beginning to regret it now.
The atmosphere of the interview was light-hearted and Chris’s answer as to what ‘Mylo Xyloto’ means clearly followed suit. Nonetheless, the quote quickly made into news websites under headings such as “Coldplay ‘Regret’ Naming Album Mylo Xyloto” and the like. Unfortunately, this wasn’t an one-off case this year. More than once, journalists used the band’s words out of context, just for the sake of attracting a great number of readers. Somewhat mocking and derogatory tones could be traced in numerous news articles about the misunderstanding, but that’s probably because they copied and pasted each other.
Chris had to come forward himself and deny this construal of his comment, tweeting this some days later:
No regrets at all about Mylo Xyloto as album title. We love it. Only regret attempting JOKE on early morning TV. CM
Needless to say, Chris’ refusal that the band regretted naming the album Mylo Xyloto also made into the news.
On the bright side, this kind of mean-spirited use of media represented a very small portion of what 2012 had to deliver to Coldplayers. For one thing, Coldplay, as is their habit, played in some benefit concerts in support of honourable causes.
The Secret Policeman’s Ball
The Secret Policeman’s Ball is a benefit show intended to raise funds to Amnesty International. Despite the fact that it usually takes place in England, the 2012 edition was staged in the US as part of the organisation’s 50th anniversary. On 4th March, a number of comedians and musicians performed at Radio City Music Hall. Coldplay wrapped up the musical section, which also included Mumford & Sons and Reggie Watts. As a matter of fact, Coldplay closed the show, playing Viva La Vida, Paradise and ETIAW.
[ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m-boT9VoYGM&hd=1"]Coldplay - The Secret Policeman's Ball 2012 Full HD - YouTube[/ame]
(As tweeted a few weeks ago, a DVD of the show is for sale now.)
A couple of days after the The Secret Policeman’s Ball, Roadie #42 reported on the event (#166). As well as giving us insights into backstage happenings, R42 commented on the first time Coldplay had played at Radio City Music Hall, around ten years ago, during the Parachutes era. The roadie said that the band are now more worldly and experienced.
R42 went on to comment about the rather unusual concerts the band had been playing up to then as part of Mylo Xyloto promotion and expressed his hope that the tour finally “properly” started. He also remarked that the rest of March would be spent as a month off.
March could’ve been a quiet month between tour legs, but, half way through it, there emerged information on the shooting of Princess of China music video, creating quite a rather heated discussion.
Gangsta Style: PoC music video recording
On 23rd March, the first rumours that a PoC video was being shot were posted on Coldplaying. On the same day, Rihanna tweeted some photos dressed as a “gangsta goth geisha”:
Gangsta goth geisha #thuglife #princessofchina http://instagr.am/p/IgaESshM5I/
#thuglife #princessofchina http://instagr.am/p/IggBoBBM5v/
Some photos from the studio that emerged later in the month:
(Other pics can be found here.)
Although the cultural references inferred from the photos weren’t entirely clear, there was in them a nod at Japanese (rather stereotypical) elements. A lot of Coldplayers therefore wondered how geishas and samurais could fit in a video for a song called Princess of China.
On 24th March, Phil tweeted that the video shooting was done.
It's a wrap on #princessofchina PH pic.twitter.com/tRI76nfE
Surely, there was no shortage of fans that were just excited at the prospect of a new video, but March saw the beginning of a discussion that encompassed as diverse subjects as the history and cultural values from China and Japan and what a music video is supposed to be.
The discussion calmed down a bit towards the end of the month, but was resumed when the video was released on June.
Australian Tour announced
In the beginning of the month (5th March), it was announced that Coldplay would be touring Australia in November.
“We're coming on tour to Australia in November” - watch Chris & Jonny chatting to Australia's Sunrise show earlier cldp.ly/cpoznov A
(Click on the link above to watch an interview where Jonny and Chris talk about the upcoming leg of the tour.)
Later 2day FM also interviewed Chris, confirming that the band would tour Australia towards the end of the year:
[ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rzHhX3iEcjA"]Chris Martin (Coldplay) Interview - Kyle and Jackie O (2day FM) - 9/3/2012 - YouTube[/ame]
Belfast Telegraph wrote a summary of the telephone interview's content.
Chris Martin: I say stupid stuff
Chris Martin admits he has a habit of saying “a lot of stupid stuff” that comes back to “bite” him. The Coldplay frontman has made many comments that he later wanted to retract such as claiming he plans to retire when he is 40.
Chris insists he no longer wants to prematurely end his music career. “I think that one thing I've learnt over the years is that I say a lot of stupid stuff that comes back to bite me and that's just another one of those things,” he said on Australian radio's The Kyle and Jackie O Show. “I get asked so many questions that it's only human nature that a lot of the answers are just going to be a load of c**p.”
Chris added that he is unsure of what he would like to do in five years time. He prefers to live in the moment and take each day as it comes.”Who knows, I don't know how I'll feel in five years,” he said. “At the moment I feel so grateful and happy to have the job I've been given.”
The musician is also grateful that Coldplay's latest album Mylo Xyloto has been such a success. However he doesn't believe US President Barack Obama is one of his fans despite hearing it directly from him. “I got to meet him in the summer and he said, ‘Oh you're on my iPod’, and I thought maybe he says that to all the musicians,” he laughed. “I feel like if I was the president I'd say that to a musician.”
(Article summarised. See original here.)
Other March highlights
Speaking of video shoots, on 15th March, Coldplay.com published an interview with Mat Whitecross, director of the Charlie Brown music video, released in the previous month.
On March, there was also an Amex Entertainment interview for us to read. Two nice extracts:
Has the meaning of the word 'Coldplay' changed for you from the time you formed the band until now? - We're moving on from this one.
Phil: For me, its meaning changes with every single thing that has happened to us over past 14 years. It's two syllables that sum up every mad, exhilarating, depressing, poignant, experience that we've ever shared together. At the beginning it was just a made-up word. Now it represents everything that's ever happened to us.
At this stage in your career, is it difficult to take new directions artistically? Do you ever worry that your artistic evolution could alienate long-time fans?
Will: No. Because those fans still have the music that they liked in the first place. We're not changing what we've done in the past - hopefully they will always enjoy that music. But we have to keep challenging ourselves and making it interesting for ourselves.
Another interesting March read is Oxfam tour Blog post Hunger is Not a Game, which highlights the possibility of fan bases joining forces in order to bring about some degree of social change.
Coldplay also won an Echo Award (German music award) in the category International Rock/Pop band, as announced on 22nd March. Other nominees were Katzenjammer, Roxette, Snow Patrol and Sunrise Avenue
On a more bizarre note, it was reported that Wayne Coyne, as part of his project for the Record Store Day, collected his collaborators’ blood, a list that included Chris Martin. The (musical) result of the collaboration, ‘I don’t want you to die’, was revealed later in the year.
Other March tweets:
An inspiring man and a good tune. youtube.com/watch?v=bqbnU5lPP_Y PH [4th Mar]
Mr. B keeping up appearances. R42. [4th Mar]
(This photo, by the way, is reminiscent of one taken by Penny Howle many years ago.)
R.I.P. Robert Sherman, one half of the amazing Sherman brothers. CM [6th Mar]
Tweets by @ParklandsSch (x)
Coldplay bassist Guy Berryman another supporter of T's@thepark twitpic.com/8t71b7
Must admit our T-shirt does make him look cool ! twitpic.com/8t725g
To round things off, here’s a remarkable rendition of Paradise, performed by the BBC Philarmonic Orchestra.
[ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fhbe7AEQURw&feature=player_embedded"]What s the Score Paradise - YouTube[/ame]
All in all, although March wasn’t a tour month, it was a quite busy month for us Coldplayers!