In the movies, big companies are seen as evil roadblocks whose commercial interests get in the way of true artists and their craft, but every now and then, these companies can actually help make something beautiful.
For example, Alabama Shakes’ Brittany Howard and My Morning Jacket’s Jim James came together to record a cover version of, of all songs, “I Want It That Way,” The Backstreet Boys’ 1999 boy band ballad, and the only reason it happened is because Chipotle got the wheels rolling. The new version of the song scores a new animated video from the restaurant, which features a young boy and girl with competing lemonade stands, who eventually come together and after years of feuding, realize they’re better off using locally sourced ingredients.
Although the original version of “I Want It That Way” is by no means a lemon, Howard and James still made sweet, sweet lemonade with their rendition, which they approached as more of a bluesy soul track to great effect. The two harmonize as a sort of boiled-down ’90s boy band, and it completely refreshes the song.
This isn’t the first time that Chipotle commissioning music has yielded a great result: In 2011, Chipotle released a video with a similar message, which was scored with a country-leaning cover of Coldplay’s “The Scientist,” performed by Willie Nelson. Speaking of excellent songs with corporate origins, in 2012, Converse also brought The Gorillaz, LCD Soundsystem leader James Murphy, and former Outkast member Andre 3000 together for an original song titled “DoYaThing.”
Image: RIP to Jive Records