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Jonny Greenwood on Mark E. Smith: “the voice of my teenage years”

Jonny Greenwood

Jonny Greenwood recently visited The Adam Buxton Podcast to talk his Oscar-nominated score for the Paul Thomas Anderson-directed Phantom Thread, and also performed a short piano piece from the score. Additionally, he discussed the recent passing of Mark E. Smith, and the impact The Fall had on his life:

[Mark’s] voice was just, was completely the voice of my teenage years more than any other singer, easily. When I think of myself, my bedroom, it’s Mark E. Smith, talking, ranting through something, completely.

Jonny goes on to recount his experience seeing The Fall live for the first time while he attended university:

I had the same thing with seeing The Fall live, where I saw half the concert, and I’d never seen a gig of The Fall’s, first time, and I couldn’t take it. It was just too… I remember walking outside Oxford Polytechnic, and standing outside, I could still hear all the music and the songs, just thinking, it was like, I couldn’t wrap my head around what it was. I wasn’t bored, and I wasn’t frightened, it was just, it just knocked me over, it was one of those things, and ended up getting me really addicted to what he was doing.

In the podcast, Jonny also discussed his score for Phantom Thread, where he expressed his desire for it to be played live easily, specifically for orchestral screening purposes (such as the upcoming ones at BAM). He also talked about the likelihood of him attending the Oscars next month, to which he remains unsure:

My wife thinks it’s quite ridiculous. But then I realized I was quite pleased with myself at the idea of not going, and I think it’s always good to resist that kind of urge, that sort of smirk. So maybe do the opposite to that impulse… [But] no one wants to see sweaty version of me, shambling around, looking embarrassed. Amusing Paul [Thomas Anderson], I think, is the main goal. Whatever entertains him.

You can hear the full podcast below. Phantom Thread is in theaters now.

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