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Posted 16 June 2015 17:46


Supreme Being

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This old interview with songwriter Sacha Skarbek is very interesting. I couldn't find it anywhere in this forum, so here's the part where he talks of the creation of "You're Beautiful".

http://www.hitquarters.com/index.php3?page=intrview/2009/July13_8_2_45.html

Hit Quarters
Interview with SACHA SKARBEK, songwriter for James Blunt, Carrie Underwood, Jason Mraz
Jul 13, 2009

With two Ivor Novello awards, a Grammy nomination, and songwriting credits for Jason Mraz (US Top 5 & UK Top 10), Duffy (UK No.1 & US Top 5) and James Blunt (US & UK No.1) – not least a co-writer credit for international megahit ‘You’re Beautiful’ - under his belt, songwriter Sacha Skarbek cuts an impressive figure in the industry.

London-based Skarbek sat down with HitQuarters to talk about the mechanics of collaborative songwriting, the difficulties of writing in the country music style, and the genesis of ‘You’re Beautiful’.

James Blunt has said that you gave him his education in the art of songcraft - what important lessons in songwriting do you think James picked up from you?

When James and I first started working together although he had enormous potential - a great ability with lyrics and turn of phrase - he didn’t necessarily have all the songcraft - the understanding of how arrangements work or of how hooks are important and how they work. So not just the technical side but also in how to get your message across - when to make things simple and when to allow a little bit more imagery. I think that was what I was able to offer him at that stage.

How did you first come to work with James Blunt?

I met James in 2002 – two years before he had a record deal - through my publishing company. The assistant that was working for us who had gone to school with James introduced me to him.

At that time James was still in the army. So we found a bit of time in between his duties to start co-writing a bit together and I helped him to set up a band and get things moving. And then when I was working on a record out in Los Angeles he came out to work with myself and another guy. And slowly we developed it and started knocking songs into shape and writing new songs - one of those was ‘You’re Beautiful’.

How was the song written? Was it as simple as, for example, Blunt writing the lyrics and you the melody and chords, or more intertwined than that?

In this instance, he came in first with the title and with the approach of the chorus. What we did then was one of those fortunate and relatively painless songwriting things where we sat down and I had some chords and ideas for the verse, and from there he pretty quickly adjusted what he had in his melodic idea.

We then put down the verse, and the chorus managed to just literally slip in behind it really effortlessly. And I think that’s due to James being very prepared with that specific idea that he wanted to do, but also his ability to move and not be too rigid with it. So when we move stuff around and try to pinpoint a hook, he was very good at being able to adapt to that.

The majority of my contribution was the music side of it with elements of melody where we were just honing what would be the right one, and sticking to a couple of key hooks rather than making it too complicated.

When it was complete was it one of those instances where you immediately heard a hit?

No, we didn’t think that – partly because at that time stylistically singer/songwriters were fairly out of vogue. When we finished writing it we looked at each other and went, “Wow, actually that’s pretty good.” And we felt it was quite smooth and we were almost thinking, “Are we being a bit lazy here?” But we both went, “No, no … That’s it. It’s cool.” We certainly didn’t think, “Oh, here we are. There’s our big hit!”

What do you think it is about the song that has touched so many people?

I think the lyric that James had with it. It’s a very simple lyric, but it has two or three different meanings to it. Although there’s a slightly dark element to the song, on a whole it’s quite a sweet pop song.

Also its honesty as well. It’s the way it was delivered by James and the song itself – a very straight up honest song. With all great songs I think, that’s a key part of it - I think that’s what stands out.

Post #269038
Posted 24 June 2015 07:31


Supreme Being

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Thank you for sharing!!!
Post #269105
Posted 19 July 2015 18:51


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I found recently a lullaby version of "You're Beautiful" released by Fisher-Price in 2013. I added it to my current playlist. If it's true that the song is on the childbirth playlist for many couples, it's just normal that it's also on a lullabies CD.

https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/lullaby-playlist/id784331228

Love the teddy bear picture too.

~~~

Posted today by "World Cafe" on Facebook & Twitter:

https://www.facebook.com/WorldCafe

https://twitter.com/WorldCafe/status/622794176866947072

10 years ago today James Blunt is No.1 w/ "You're Beautiful" Watch and stream his World Cafe session from 2005 below!

http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=4861773

Post #270270
Posted 20 July 2015 18:09


Supreme Being

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That's sweet!
I can definately fall asleep to that one.


Spinning on my heels....so far away from real <3
Post #270278
Posted 28 July 2015 22:59


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Last week was the 10th anniversary of 'You're Beautiful' being #1 on the UK charts. James tweeted a little reminder in his very own writing style.

https://twitter.com/JamesBlunt/status/624283710901329924

James Blunt ‏@JamesBlunt Jul 23 2015
On this week, 10 years ago, your music taste sucked ***.

Two videos dated of 2005 when James performed the song on "Top Of The Pops" TV show have been uploaded recently on Youtube. Maybe by nostalgic fans, I don't know, but this is great stuff to watch, Karl looks so young.

10.06.2005 - You're Beautiful (episode 23)
https://youtu.be/04gX3TMFBP4

25.12.2005 - Christmas Special - You're Beautiful - Fearne Cotton, presenter
https://youtu.be/9W9707ypX54

Post #270343
Posted 29 July 2015 14:12


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Ha! Our music taste sucked big time. lol
Ahh...great memories. Thanks Aline!



Spinning on my heels....so far away from real <3
Post #270344
Posted 29 July 2015 19:15
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Thanks Aline! He looked like an angel in the second video
Post #270348
Posted 30 July 2015 15:52
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Happy 10th-year-of-making-it-no.1-Birthday!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7WAphzIXlhY&hd=1

Our taste in music sucking a**? Ha! If you say so! Yet it made you rich
Post #270350
Posted 23 December 2015 18:46


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I love every fucking word in this song. It's so simple, the music is pretty and effective. Shows that James is a phenomenal singer. Men understood how he felt, women want to be the one he sings to. I feel pretty every time I hear it. It's been said that it's not one of his stronger songs, but I think it is not less great, just a different great.

I can only imagine, as it must be pretty funny to hear 'fucking high' being sung back to him in all different accents around the world.

I think this song bring James to the attention of people who wouldn't normally listen to introspective music. I love it, but maybe it's not preferred by others.
Post #273608
Posted 02 October 2018 17:31


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Couldn't find the thread for the video.

Spoof of 'You're Beautiful' video made by BBC Radio 1. This music video director would have been around 14 in 2004 at the time of the filming.

https://youtu.be/ZmWgjVDY1t4

What iS Music Videos?
Monthly comedy show about music videos, hosted by the worst artificial intelligence ever.
Post #286867
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