Review: Chris Martin and Michael Stipe join forces at the 12-12-12 Sandy Benefit concert (12 December)

Chris Martin joined forces with R.E.M. frontman Michael Stipe for a special performance of ‘Losing My Religion’ during the 12-12-12 Concert for Sandy Relief at Madison Square Garden last night, writes Diffuser in a review of the benefit event. You can discuss all the performances at the Coldplay Live forum now (and also watch Chris Martin via YouTube if you missed it!) [thanks to everyone who contributed throughout!]

According to NBC anchor Brian Williams, who appeared onscreen soon after to solicit donations, the team-up was a surprise even to those involved with the planning, and Chris himself seemed humbled to share the stage with one of his heroes. “This is really happening,” Chris said, strumming the opening chords to R.E.M.’s biggest hit. Stipe handled most of the lead vocals, but the pair harmonized in spots, and when it was over, Chris poked fun at his duet partner’s recent lack of musical output, saying: “He came out of retirement for that song, and now he’s gone right back in.”


It wasn’t the only quip in Martin’s three-song acoustic set, which carried the show past the midnight mark and also included the Coldplay tunes ‘Viva la Vida’ and ‘Us Against the World.’ Following ‘Viva,’ the oft-self-deprecating superstar rated his own popularity somewhere below that of Britain’s reigning boy band. “I know you really wanted One Direction,” he said, “but it’s way past their bedtime.”

Coldplayers’ reviews and new photos of Chris Martin at the 12-12-12 Sandy Benefit Concert in New York (12 December 2012):

I think Chris was great . I think I am one of the few people who liked Viva on the guitar …really lovely ! He was a bit nervous , which is acceptable considering the Line-up he was a part of! But he has to start to give himself some credit , I thought he would quit all the pop references like one direction and Gangnam Style and talk serious for once considering it was a charity show. But, then again its Chris … ! I loved his performance and was sooo proud ! Losing My Releigion with Michael Stipe was one of the high points of the show for me . UATW was sooo beautiful , was almost crying! It was all in all amazing , not to mention the suit! [thanks teernabh5]

He was too nervous, if you want to be honest, Viva La Vida didnt work on the guitar and UATW just sounded too disjointed on the piano. I dont really know what he was thinking. The suit seemed a bit inappropriate and he came across a bit goofy whenever he spoke. It was a decent effort though, and a good collaboration with michael Stipe. [thanks Lukestar1991]

I feel like he did get caught a few times in UATW, but otherwise I thought his performance was fantastic. I felt he was in prime performance shape, in my opinion. Maybe it is just because he didn’t have to go for any of those high notes. [thanks erynf_1996]

I don’t think Viva quite worked on guitar either. I think if you’d have swapped them around (Viva on piano and UATW on guitar) then it would have been better. We’ve heard Chris do parts of Viva on piano before (a snippet at Glastonbury 2011), and we all know that he’s great on guitar in UATW. So maybe swapping them around would have made it better, but it was still good nonetheless. It is Chris Martin afterall, so it’s bound to be good! [thanks ColdplaySheffield]

I loved it. I had an exhausting and awful week (semester’s finals) and since I watched this performance this afternoon (twice, actually ) all I want to do is: sleep, watch series, listen to this and nothing else. I thought VLV sounded pretty great, although he kinda rushed the end (but he was so excited about his upcoming performance with Michael Stipe that I understand ) and it’s weird to hear it without any other instrument or loud “oooh”s. He seemed quite nervous (with such a line-up, and a performance with one of his favourite artists, I guess, that’s very much understandable), but damn was he enthusiastic and enjoying himself during Losing My Religion! I mean, it’s the case most times, but you could really felt that he was very happy to be there and to perform with Michael Stipe. UATW is lovely on piano, especially the end, imo! However, same as in VLV, it felt weird without hearing Will’s voice, or the crowd. Great performance and ohmygod please let next era’s clothing be suits, I don’t care, Chris won’t move on stage it’s okay, just daaaammn! [thanks Coeurli]

All three songs were great, although I think the combination of Chris and Jonny, or even Chris and Will is so much better than Chris on his own. Viva was cool, I like the moment when he says “the sound, the sound of drums.” UATW was beautiful but lacking in Will. He and Michael Stipe sound good together too. [thanks MosesTheMarshmallow]

I loved the way he arranged each song! Viva on guitar, UATW on piano… And Losing My Religion was beautiful too, their voices together are pretty great. Also, UATW was a perfect choice also considering its meaning: starting over, being alone against all difficulties…!!! He had to sing it! I also loved his joke about One Direction And how he was FINALLY dressed up as he should! I know they’ll never use suits for concerts ’cause they’re uncomfortable, and if you just consider how much Chris sweats… Suits aren’t a suitable choice, no. What else can I say… He amazes me every time, and I’m so proud of him (and the rest of the band). I’m so proud. [thanks Dany93]

STYLISH performance. My opinion: Viva on acoustic guitar works better than piano versions, that I have heard. Don’t know why, but for me Viva with Chris alone on piano becomes boring after first verse. With acoustic guitar performance was more energetic and ryhtmic. And with suit on, that was just stylish. Also good idea to perform Losing My Religion with Michael Stipe. Us Against the World on piano is even more calming than on guitar and that worked well in that setlist. But like always, Chris performing alone looks a bit nervous and lost. [thanks CP-EST]

How great to see Michael Stipe and Chris Martin (looking very dapper in his nice suit it must be said!) performing together again. Now that is a PROPER collaboration I would love to see. [thanks howyousawtheworld]

As for the performance. Yeah he looked nervous the first seconds, but after that he performed fine. I enjoyed this acoustic version of Viva La Vida better than other piano versions he has perfomed. This is just my opinion though. I think Chris Martin killed it with UATW, and of course that Michael Stipe duet was great. My only complaint? It was only 10 minutes. [thanks guda4siempre]

He wasn’t there to sell his album, to sell the MX theme, so the MX outfit would have been inappropriate. I am biased, I am a fan of the suit. Everyone here who said the suit was appropriate and fitting to the event was spot on. I hate it when people underdress for occasions (even though Chris has done that in the past!) [thanks kittybitty]

I don’t understand what could possibly be inappropriate about wearing a suit to an event like this. Or to any event, for that matter (unless it’s a pajama party). But yeah, I’m biased as well. Just watched the performance and I thought he was brilliant! A bit rushed during Viva, but it was very refreshing to hear on an acoustic guitar. LMR with Michael Stipe was amazing and so was UATW on piano. He sounded great. [thanks Blue Nails]

Wow, I just went through the whole thread. Thank you for posting those great pictures and videos!!! I woke up a bit earlier (believe me that normally NEVER happens ) and I wasn’t disappointed. THE SUIT: first of all, from a fangirl point of view –> flippin hot. But not only that: also very classy and elegant and respectful. I loved Chris’ performance, truly. I love how presented himself. And his jokes are always priceless. Viva on the guitar was very, very beautiful, I thought. And UATW on the piano was so great and emotional. WOW. Just wonderful. We are very lucky to have heard these two songs performed in a quite unusual way. The performance of Losing My Religion was also amazing. He persuaded Michael Stipe to come and sing, that’s awesome It sounded great, and Chris was a real fanboy. So, I really loved it, it was short, but just great. [thanks [email protected]@]

Don’t forget to check out your tour discussion thread if you are getting Coldplay tickets or just getting excited for the European & North American 2012 shows and other forthcoming appearances:

FEBRUARY 2012
8 Los Angeles, CA @ Club Nokia (iHeartRadio) [discussion]
9 Los Angeles, CA @ Jimmy Kimmel Live [discussion]
10 Los Angeles, CA @ GRAMMY Week MusiCares Person of the Year tribute [discussion]
12 Los Angeles, CA @ 54th Grammy Awards, Staples Center [discussion]
16 Sydney, Australia @ 2DayFM, Mobile Live Set (intimate show) [discussion] [CANCELLED]
17 Sydney, Australia @ Sunrise (intimate show) [discussion] [CANCELLED]
21 London @ Brit Awards 2012, O2 Arena [discussion]

MARCH 2012
2 New York, NY @ Good Morning America [discussion]
4 New York, NY @ The Secret Policeman’s Ball, Radio City Music Hall (Amnesty International) [discussion]

APRIL 2012
17 Edmonton, AB @ Rexall Place [discussion]
18 Calgary, AB @ Scotiabank Saddledome [discussion]
20 Vancouver, BC @ Rogers Arena [discussion]
21 Vancouver, BC @ Rogers Arena [discussion]
24 Portland, OR @ Rose Garden Arena [discussion]
25 Seattle, WA @ KeyArena [discussion]
27 San Jose, CA @ HP Pavilion At San Jose [discussion]
28 San Jose, CA @ HP Pavilion At San Jose [discussion]

MAY 2012
1 Los Angeles, CA @ Hollywood Bowl [discussion]
2 Los Angeles, CA @ Hollywood Bowl [discussion]
3 Los Angeles, CA @ American Idol show [discussion]
4 Los Angeles, CA @ Hollywood Bowl [discussion]
5 Los Angeles, CA @ KROQ’s Weenie Roast y Fiesta [discussion]
18 Porto, Portugal @ Dragao Stadium [discussion]
20 Madrid, Spain @ Estadio Vicente Calderón [discussion]
22 Nice, France @ Stade Charles Herman / Nikaia [discussion]
24 Turin, Italy @ Olympic Stadium [discussion]
26 Zurich, Switzerland @ Letzigrund [discussion]
29 Coventry, UK @ Ricoh Stadium [discussion]

JUNE 2012
1 London, UK @ the Emirates Stadium [discussion]
2 London, UK @ the Emirates Stadium [discussion]
4 London, UK @ the Emirates Stadium [discussion]
7 Sunderland, UK @ the Stadium of Light [discussion]
9 London, UK @ Wembley Stadium (Capital FM’s Summertime Ball 2012) [discussion]
9 Manchester, UK @ the Etihad Stadium [discussion]
10 Manchester, UK @ the Etihad Stadium [discussion]
22 Dallas, TX @ American Airlines Center [discussion]
23 Dallas, TX @ American Airlines Center [discussion]
25 Houston, TX @ Toyota Center [discussion]
26 Houston, TX @ Toyota Center [discussion]
28 Tampa, FL @ St. Pete Times Forum [discussion]
29 Miami, FL @ American Airlines Arena [discussion]

JULY 2012
2 Atlanta, GA @ Philips Arena [discussion]
3 Charlotte, NC @ Time Warner Cable Arena [discussion]
5 Philadelphia, PA @ Wells Fargo Center [discussion]
6 Philadelphia, PA @ Wells Fargo Center [discussion]
8 Washington, DC @ Verizon Center [discussion]
9 Washington, DC @ Verizon Center [discussion]
23 Toronto, ON @ Air Canada Centre [discussion]
24 Toronto, ON @ Air Canada Centre [discussion]
26 Montreal, QC @ Bell Centre [discussion]
27 Montreal, QC @ Bell Centre [discussion]
29 Boston, MA @ TD Garden [discussion]
30 Boston, MA @ TD Garden [discussion]

AUGUST 2012
1 Auburn Hills, MI @ Palace of Auburn Hills [discussion]
3 East Rutherford, NJ @ Izod Center [discussion]
4 East Rutherford, NJ @ Izod Center [discussion]
7 Chicago, IL @ United Center [discussion]
8 Chicago, IL @ United Center [discussion]
10 St. Paul, MN @ Xcel Energy Center [discussion]
11 St. Paul, MN @ Xcel Energy Center [discussion]
28 Copenhagen, Denmark @ Parken Stadium [discussion]
30 Stockholm, Sweden @ Olympic Stadium [discussion]

SEPTEMBER 2012
2 Paris, France @ Stade de France [discussion]
4 Cologne, Germany @ Rheinenergie Stadium [discussion]
6 The Hague, Netherlands @ Malieveld [discussion]
7 Los Angeles, US @ Shrine Auditorium (Stand Up To Cancer) [discussion]
9 London, UK @ Paralympics Closing Ceremony [discussion]
12 Munich, Germany @ Olympiastadion [discussion]
14 Leipzig, Germany @ Red Bull Stadium [discussion]
16 Prague, Czech Republic @ Slavia Eden Stadium [discussion]
19 Warsaw, Poland @ National Stadium [discussion]
22 Hannover, Germany @ AWD Arena [discussion]

NOVEMBER 2012
10 Auckland, New Zealand @ Mt Smart Stadium [discussion]
12 Sydney, Australia @ MAX TV intimate show [discussion] [NEW!]
13 Melbourne, Australia @ Etihad Stadium [discussion]
17 Sydney, Australia @ Allianz Stadium [discussion]
18 Sydney, Australia @ Allianz Stadium [discussion]
21 Brisbane, Australia @ Suncorp Stadium [discussion]

DECEMBER 2012:
29 Uncasville, CT @ Mohegan Sun Arena [discussion] [NEW!]
30 New York, NY @ Barclays Center [discussion] [NEW!]
31 New York, NY @ Barclays Center (with Jay-Z) [discussion] [NEW!]

Read also: European Stadium Tour announced! (general discussion thread for the Europe tour)
Read also: North America Tour announced! (general discussion thread for the US/Canada tour)
Read also: 2012: Live Appearances – Easy Thread Finder (last updated – 12th January 2012)
Read also: 2012 tour date rumours (please post dates for ALL countries in here)

Kit yourself up for the forthcoming MX tour and get spotted with Coldplaying’s new range of merchandise! [click on the items for the full shop]

The new range of Coldplaying merchanise (unofficial of course to the official shop) has hit our stores, with our biggest range of goods so far. Prices are as low as they can be for a Cafepress shop so more people will be able to afford them. We don’t take any profits for the sale of the merchandise as a result. Take a browse in one of the online stores nearest to you: UK | US | Canada | Australia | European (shipping is worldwide, but you can choose what currency to pay in) – simply alter the country dropdown menu at the top of the shop page. [thanks to TracieMorgan and zzz]