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Chris Martin, Coldplay singer and … Rammstein fan?


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I caught up with Chris Martin of Coldplay the day after he dropped $400 on vinyl at Amoeba Records. Naturally, I asked him what was in the stack. “I walked out with, let’s see, some live Paul Simon, some Rammstein, some Talking Heads and some John Williams, some Jay-Z, all of it on vinyl …” Wait, Chris, did you say Rammstein? “Yeah, I love Rammstein, are you kidding?” Sure, of course, my bad: The guy who sings “Yellow” adores German industrial metal. That makes total sense.


Martin considers the careers Jay-Z, the Beatles, U2 and Stevie Wonder to be compass points for him, but when it comes down to the greatest living music talent, he named a man with a baton in his hand.


“The best concert of all time, at least that I’ve ever seen, was John Williams in the Lincoln Center with the New York Philharmonic performing music from Steven Spielberg movies. I’m telling you, John Williams is the best musician alive. At one point, he said to the audience, ‘This next song is from a George Lucas film, but I don’t think Steve will mind,’ and everybody knew he was going to do the ‘Star Wars’ theme and they went nuts. All these bankers and rich people in tuxedos just went crazy, punching the air, throwing their bow ties up.”


I told Martin my theory that the theme from “Jaws” is the most quickly identifiable piece of music in the contemporary American consciousness — play just the first two notes and everybody thinks about sharks. “Yes, yes, it’s true. And think how many people have performed it in pools. It’s not only brilliantly, musically clever, it’s also so simple that 7-year-olds can sing it when they’re trying to scare each other. It’s the ultimate music. It’s very clever.”


One last question, Chris: What band do you think should be celebrated more? I thought he might say that Coldplay deserved a break from the haters, but instead he went back in black: “AC/DC. I think their legend has really yet to be written. I consider them to be on the same level as the Beatles. That music was amazing. Maybe we should do ‘Hells Bells’ at our shows …”


– Geoff Boucher



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