Coldplay frontman Chris Martin doesn’t know if Michael Stipe will be on hand when Coldplay returns to Atlanta Sunday, but having R.E.M.’s lead singer sit in with Martin’s band back in 2005 was “a front man’s wet dream,” Martin says.
One might imagine the admiration goes both ways, considering the triple-Grammy-winning, multimillion-selling success of Coldplay’s latest album, “Viva La Vida.”
The extended tour that began almost a year ago to support the album brought Coldplay to Atlanta last November, and brings them back to perform at the Lakewood Amphitheater Sunday. In a recent telephone interview from Los Angeles, Martin talked about selling out arenas and the thunderstorm in the Abu Dhabi desert that greeted one of Coldplay’s recent outdoor concerts: “I think it was God telling us to shut up.”
The free album you’re handing out at the concert, is it a download?
It’s a physical album; it’s an actual CD.
It’s archaic, but it also looks very nice; it’s a nice present. It’s a way of saying thanks for liking Coldplay.
Considering illegal downloads, don’t listeners already get enough free music?
Anyone who is already at the concert has given us more than enough. In fact, we’re thinking about offering a free baby-sitting service.
Speaking of baby-sitting, is Apple [his daughter with wife Gwyneth Paltrow] going to see her godfather Simon Pegg [who plays Scotty] in ‘Star Trek?’
She’s little bit too little I think.
I read that your prep-school band the Rockin’ Honkies was booed.
That’s a combination of two stories. I was in a band called the Rockin’ Honkies. We had no idea of what the word ‘honkie’ meant. We were in the middle-of-nowhere England. It was a rhythm and blues band. They were very popular. I was in another band at the same time.
I can’t tell you that. I was booed and hissed. But recently there was a guy backstage at a Coldplay show, and I realized it was a kid from my school, and he was one of the kids who had booed me off.
Did you confront him?
I should have, but he was a little fat and a little bald, and a little drunken so I didn’t. I did, however, have his tires let down.
What’s the deal with the gaffer’s tape on the fingers?
Ah, you haven’t been paying attention. I’ve moved on to bracelets. It’s what all the soft rockers are wearing now.
Is Coldplay a stadium rock band?
No. Only U2, the Stones and Bruce Springsteen are stadium rockers. We could play a stadium, but no one would be there.
More discussion on this interview is at the Coldplay forum here [thanks mimixxx]