Explaining the meaning behind song «Yellow» — Coldplay

«Yellow» — Coldplay: explaining the meaning behind song and songfacts songs

The song Yellow by Coldplay has a deep hidden meaning that not many people know about. It is supposedly about Chris Martin’s ex-girlfriend, Gwyneth Paltrow. The song is written in the point of view of a person who is dying, and wanting to see their loved one one last time before they die. The lyrics “Look at the stars; Look how they shine for you” are supposed to represent how the person loves the other person so much that they are looking at the stars, which is something that will always be around long after they are gone.

“Yellow” is a musical composition from the British rockers Coldplay. The musicians created the soundtrack and produced it together with British producer Ken Nelson (for their first LP Parachutes). The soundtrack was recorded in March 2000 and released on June 26th.

In the English UK Single Chart, “Yellow” settled in fourth place, becoming the band’s debut hit. It was an international breakthrough for the group. Due to intensive rotation and advertising promotion, the soundtrack glorified the musical group. Since then, “Yellow” has been covered by various vocalists.

The single was well received by critics. Matt Deal of The Rolling Stone wrote that “Yellow” “recklessly smacks of romance”, writing that “the collective mesmerizes, molds a compelling infernal world with boundless reign of spirit.” “Yellow” won the 2001 NME Awards for Best Single and was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Rock Song and Best Rock Vocal Duo or Group Performance (in 2002). -th year). “The Independent” emphasized the sincerity of the musical group. In 2021, The Billboard ranked “Yellow” at number 35 on its “Greatest Songs of 2001” list.

Song writing history «Yellow» — Coldplay

The stars helped the musicians find the theme. “Yellow” was created in Welsh “Rockfield Studios”. One night, after finishing work on “Shiver”, the LP’s main soundtrack, the musicians left the studio for a break. The street was poorly lit, with night lights visible, which, according to producer Ken Nelson, looked “simply amazing.” The musicians of the group also drew attention to this.

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Vocalist Chris Martinon was inspired by this image and had the basic melody of the composition drawn in his mind in the form of a picture of chords. At first, he did not take this seriously, although he “began to hum the melody to the musicians of the band in the worst imitation of Neil Young.” The vocalist later said, “The song featured the word ‘star’, which fit Neil Young’s voice.” The soundtrack began “very slowly” (according to drummer Will Champion). But Martin did not hesitate and set the song pace. They formed an ostinato with guitarist John Buckland and “the lyrics got a little heavier”.

When composing the text component, Martin could not find the necessary words. He pondered over a specific word because of the feeling of a lack of a basic text moment for realizing the song’s worldview. He looked around the room and found a yellowed-paged telephone book located not far from him. Martin named the song “Yellow” in reference to this phone book. He commented: “In a multivariate universe, the composition could have been called Playboy. The lyrics were worked out in cooperation between the band’s musicians. Bassist Guy Berryman wrote the first verse (“Look at the Stars”). At night, after finishing work on the creation of the composition, they recorded it at Parr Street Studios.

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The meaning of the song «Yellow» — Coldplay

Martin shared his thoughts on the soundtrack: “Yellow concretizes the character of the musical group, means brightness, hope and devotion.” There is a metaphorical bias towards “emotional commitment”. The reminder of the shaded image goes back to the vocalist’s habit of making lists and underlining important positions in them. The performer said that the composition is about fidelity and the movement towards love without an answer (at the time of writing the soundtrack, he was unmarried). Even without taking into account the listed nuances, many consider the song to be happy, containing a huge emotional meaning in each verse.

In the musical composition, a young man is about to commit suicide. He lost all hope:

“My star is fading,

And I don’t see any chance of being released.”

These lines are associated with Amsterdam, because this city has one of the highest suicide rates in the world.

In the background lies the dark side of yellow: cowardice, betrayal, selfishness and madness. In addition, yellow is sometimes characterized by the color of caution and physical ailment (jaundice, malaria and pestilence). Perhaps it is no coincidence that toxic metals such as cadmium, lead and chromium, as well as urine, are considered sources of yellow pigments.

The yellow heart emoji can symbolize love like any other heart symbol or emoji icon, but its color is often used to show sympathy and friendship (as opposed to romantic love). Its color is also combined with an expression of happiness.

The promotional video for “Yellow” was filmed in Studland Bay in the English county of Dorset. The video is minimalist. In it, the vocalist performs song lines during a beach walk. He has wet hair after the rain, he is dressed in a black raincoat.

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The video was shot in continuous duplication, without cuts, while maintaining the sequence. Movement was slow.

It was designed and launched by Coldplay. At first, it was planned that the entire musical group would appear in the video against the backdrop of a sun-drenched landscape. But on the shooting day, the Champion had to bury his mother, it was decided that only the vocalist would appear in the frame. The weather was also unlucky. Instead of a fine day, a strong wind was blowing and it was raining. It was originally planned that stars would move across the sky, but in the end this idea was abandoned, deciding that this would distract attention from Martin.

The video was filmed at a speed of 50 frames per second, which is twice the usual speed. During filming, the vocalist performed the song 2 times faster than usual (to synchronize the visual-sound aspects), which is not easy to do in music videos.

In the end, everything was reduced to 25 frames per second for a slow motion effect. The transition from night to day was edited using telecinema. When playing back from celluloid to videotape, the operator changed the lighting manually, giving it a blue tint at the beginning, red in the middle, and yellow at the end.

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  1. Christine

    I think I just fell in love with this song again! One of my favs for many years!