Win Butler Discusses Arcade Fire’s ‘I Give You Power’
Yesterday (Jan. 19), Arcade Fire dropped a new song that they recorded with gospel-soul legend Mavis Staples, "I Give You Power." Today, frontman Win Butler discussed it with Zane Lowe of Apple Music.
As you can hear below, he's had the track for nearly a year, having recorded Staples' vocals when she was in New Orleans in May 2016 for JazzFest. But he chose to release it now because "It’s the eve of the inauguration and I think it’s easy to get sucked into sitting on the couch and checking your news feed and watching things on CNN, and we’re just musicians and the only thing we have to offer is our music.”
Butler said that Staples has been offering her wisdom as a veteran of the civil rights movement to help him through the uncertainty that awaits the world in the era of Donald Trump. “I talked to Mavis last night," he continued, "and she basically just said, ‘Now more than ever we have to come together and just kind of hold onto each other.’ For us it’s a feeling of solidarity and trying to share our heart and our music ... to not feel powerless to focus on what we can do as individuals and try to do our part.”
Despite the age and cultural differences, Butler said that Staples "is one of my favorite people on Earth and I’ve been fortunate enough to sing with her a couple times, and we just have a really beautiful relationship with her as a band. We're just really honored to sing with her.' He later added, "Every single time she walks into a room, all of us feel very happy and there's like a very familial feeling with her. Just singing with her is [something] I really remember and cherish. I think she's a beautiful person."
However, he refused to say if the release of "I Give You Power" was a harbinger of more new music soon on the way from Arcade Fire. “The future is unwritten,” is all he said.
Listen to Win Butler Discuss "I Give You Power"
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