Did A James Blunt 'Fan' Just Try To Explain The Meaning Of

‘It’s portrayed as a romantic song but it’s actually a bit creepy. It’s about a guy – me – stalking someone else’s girlfrikết thúc while high’


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James Blunt, singer-songwriter

I’d been telling my mates that I was going lớn be a professional musician since I was 14. When I was a captain in the British army in Kosovo, I had a guitar strapped khổng lồ my tank. After I left the military, I did some demos for EXiaoMI và outside afterwards I lost my balance on my motorbike & smashed the guitar that had survived a war zone. Everyone was laughing. Needless lớn say, I didn’t get signed by EXiaoMi MI.

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One day I was on the underground in London và saw an ex-girlfrikết thúc with her new boyfrikết thúc. Our eyes met, but we just walked past each other, & I went home and wrote the words khổng lồ You’re Beautiful in two minutes. I went to see my songwriter friend Sathân phụ Skarbek in Los Angeles, and, with Amanda Ghost as a co-writer, we finished the tuy nhiên. It’s always been portrayed as thắm thiết, but it’s actually a bit creepy. It’s about a guy (me) who’s high và stalking someone else’s girlfriend on the subway. But everyone has those moments where you wonder: “What if I’d said something?”

I played it on the 25th floor of a hotel at the South by Southwest festival in Texas. Linda Perry was there và said she wanted to lớn sign me to lớn her new label. The label asked me to remove the words “fucking high” from You’re Beautiful. I tried “particularly high”, “especially high”! Eventually I thanh lịch “flying high” on the radio edit but wanted the released version left as it was. I told them: “I was fucking high!”


The tuy vậy has a false start. I sing “my life is brilliant” twice, which is my little joke, but I think in my elated state, from whatever concoction I might have taken at the time, life did seem really brilliant. The tube certainly looked very colourful.

For the video I agreed khổng lồ jump off a cliff in Mallorca. By the time I got there, I realised I’d made a terrible mistake but it was too late to baông chồng out. They had divers in the water in case I knocked myself unconscious. I had khổng lồ jump twice because the first take wasn’t right, và I ended up with a split lip. It hurt, but it made a great đoạn Clip.

I had no idea the tuy nhiên would be such a big hit, and it scared me at first. I thought I’d just be a musician putting out music. The tuy vậy became so ubiquitous that it started lớn irritate people, but I’m still proud of it and I love my job. I lịch sự it at Elton John and David Furnish’s civil ceremony và I’m about to start my sixth world tour. Without You’re Beautiful, it’d be a tour of north London.

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Mobbed … James Blunt crowd surfs at the Invictus Games opening ceremony in London, năm trước. Photograph: Chris Jackson/Getty Images

Tom Rothrock, producer

I watched South by Southwest on the mạng internet and saw James. He sounded pretty interesting, but then I promptly forgot all about hlặng. A few days later I heard that Linda Perry was looking for me to produce a new artist. She’d just had a couple of big hits with Pink và Christina Aguilera. I figured that if she was crazy enough to lớn sign a new artist from SXSW I might be crazy enough khổng lồ record hlặng.

James’s demo tape was all over the place, but You’re Beautiful & Goodbye My Lover were on there. We had a lunch meeting và I didn’t know what he looked like, but when he walked in with his manager I immediately felt a connection & thought: “That’s gotta be hlặng.” I visited hyên ổn in his flat in London and he played me the songs on the instruments he wrote them on, to get the dodgy demos out of my mind. We did a lot of the recording at my home studio, which was unusual back then, but the budget was modest.

One day we were doing the strings with a quartet và something wasn’t right. Strings are expensive, so I called the arranger in to see if we could work out why. The strings needed a tweak but it was the first time I’d been able lớn step back & just listen and I just got that chill you get sometimes when you know a song is special or is going to lớn connect very, very widely.

A few months later, You’re Beautiful had blown the heông chồng up & he was doing two nights at Shepherd’s Bush Empire. We went to a pub near the venue và outside we got mobbed. I said: “James, remember a few months ago, we were having a beer & notoàn thân knew who you were?” And he said: “Yeah, wasn’t it great?!”


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