My boyfriend at the time told me about Coldplay in 2001. I think it was 2001. But he wasn’t really my boyfriend until 2003, so a guy who liked me but whom I didn’t like yet, not until he pursued me relentlessly for years, told me about them in 2001.

He told me about them because we shared the same favorite color, which was yellow, and, because we were teenagers, we thought everything was synchronicitous (probably not a word).

But because this was 2001, practically the stone age of music, I had to wait until the song randomly came on the radio to hear it. It was either this or watch VH1 in the wee small hours of the morning, and even though that was a viable option, I liked to sleep when I was a teenager. I still do.

One day when I was driving to work at Smoothie King, I heard “Yellow” on the radio, and it was everything guy who liked me but whom I didn’t like yet said it would be. I bought Parachutes when I got off work.

After I bought the album, I fell hard one day for the song “Shiver.” I was sad to go to work that day because it meant that I couldn’t listen to it on repeat for at least five hours, and I thought I might die in the meantime because I was a teenager.

And then at work that night, the Muzak satellite radio station 960, Modern Rock Alternative, played “Shiver.” And I freaked out and turned the speakers up as loud as they would go. I could do that because I was a shift leader. And a damn cool one at that. Also, no customers were in the store, which added to the synchronicity of the moment.

When A Rush of Blood to the Head came out, I bought it and loved it.

Then the trailer for Peter Pan used “Clocks,” and I got really excited because Coldplay! Cool! I like them and they’re on a movie trailer and I recognize the song and I didn’t know they were really getting popular!

When X&Y came out, I did not buy it. It’s hard for me to figure out what happened to my perception of Coldplay between Rush and X&Y, but I think it has something to do with the incredible overplaying of “Speed of Sound.”Because isn’t it the same song as “Clocks”? What? That’s weird. I already heard that song a lot a few years ago. I don’t really want to hear it some more.

And maybe also how vastly the music industry had changed in those years because now I no longer bought CDs and only downloaded my music, most oftentimes legally. Therefore, the music selection available to me was no longer limited to songs I could hear on the radio.

And this was a very good thing.

I did not care to procure X&Y even for free.

When Viva la Vida came out, it was all over the 2008 Olympics and everyone on earth decided that Coldplay was terrible and never was good.

Then-Husband bought it on vinyl, and while I kind of enjoyed listening to it whenever he played it, I filed it away in the same category as Joshua Tree of albums that were decidedly HIS.

When we separated, I somehow ended up with Viva, maybe because I’m the one who ended up with the record player.

One night a baby possum sneaked into my apartment, and my younger brother, who was visiting, trapped it in a pot and selected Viva to be the record he used to slide under the pot in order to take the possum outside. He said it was because that album was worthless.

He is a music snob, but he’s only 23, so it’s okay for now.

I found the baby possum dead on my back porch the next day. I think a cat got it.

Truthfully, I still love those first two albums. Regardless of how much Coldplay sounds like U2 now.

This is my favorite Coldplay song.

I am forever torn over whether I list them under my favorite bands on my Facebook profile. I think that they’re not currently listed because of the caveats I would have to include with the listing: I like Coldplay, but only the first two albums a lot and the rest of them not very much at all.

That makes me sound like just as much of a music snob as my 23-year-old brother. But I’m 27, so it’s not okay.

To summarize, I would not mind seeing Coldplay in concert, as long as it was smallish and probably also free.

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7 Responses to Coldplay

  1. Kathleen says:

    I feel the exact same way. I loved Coldplay so much through those first two albums that I resolved to see them in concert before I died, and so finally I did, but it was after Viva came out. The concert was in a huge arena, we were in the back, and it didn’t start until my bedtime. Granted, I go to bed early, but still. I wouldn’t say I enjoyed the experience.

  2. Katy says:

    I saw Coldplay at ACL in 2005 during the Brit rock year (Keane, Coldplay, Oasis, etc.), and it was good. Chris Martin dressed in black and played a Johnny Cash song at the end and was decidedly good with the audience. And I’m wondering if it’s that Coldplay changed and became Not As Good or if they were always The Same Thing Over and Over, an anthem band, just like U2. I think maybe I just didn’t realize at first that all subsequent albums would be about the same. I have the first two albums and X&Y. I have never listened to X&Y all the way through. I figure I have all the Coldplay I will ever need.

  3. Eugene Roby says:

    This caught my attention, because I recently purchased the song “Strawberry Swing” of Itunes. I can relate to your Coldplay experience, of sorts. In my opininion, for the past couple of years those guys have been way overatted. I do like the new song however, and the video is pretty cool (it’s good to know that some artists devote time and effort to this “obsolete” medium). I will never see squirrels in the same fashion. As for being a music snob, don’t sweat it, it took me 27 years to develop a fine appreciation for Miley Cyrus.

  4. Julia says:

    in general I do not like bands with lots of hype, Coldplay is one of those bands. U2 is another. If it comes on the radio and nothing else is on I might leave it on that channel, but I will always look for something better first!

  5. Josh White says:

    I’ve only heard Coldplay once, on SNL in 2006. I asked Tony who they were and he laughed. I tried to make a point about how SNL shouldn’t be playing crap music that nobody wants to hear, and he tried to convince me that this band had been around for many years and that they were currently the most popular band in the world.

    I really hate Joshua Tree. And Achtung Baby. And U2.

  6. BFF says:

    I really like the song “Kingdom Come,” and it is off of the X&Y album. I also like Coldplay, but not as a favorite. Kind of like the person you invite only to large parties, but never to intimate dinner parties.

  7. Kyle says:

    Good post. I had tickets to see them but a hurricane forced a cancelation and “coldplay” sent me a refund… It’s been awhile since I listened to either cd.

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