James Blunt pays tribute to late Whitney Houston in his new single Miss America.
In the brand new track from his fourth studio album Moon Landing, James Blunt, 39, offers an acoustic ballad which speaks of the personal connection fans feel they have with singers, musicians and bands because of the media spotlight upon them.
Allowing the lyrics and melodies to work for themselves, the music video just shows James Blunt with simply a grand piano as his accompaniment.
The allusions to Whitney Houston are clear from the first line which asks “did someone give you something to help you ease the pain, like the liquor in a bottle we watched you slip away”.
In 2012, on February 11, Whitney Houston was found unconscious and submerged in the bathtub of her her suite at the Beverly Hilton Hotel, and was pronounced dead at the scene.
The cause of death was down to the “effects of atherosclerotic heart disease and cocaine use” according to the Los Angeles County coroner’s office.
Considered one of the greatest singers of all time, Whitney Houston loss was felt across the world, and just like the reaction to Princess Diana’s death in 1997, her death caused global mourning for the people, like James Blunt, who felt like they knew her “through the bars of a song”.
A sombre first release from James Blunt’s upcoming album, his following tracks will continue an emotionally charged theme.
James Blunt worked again with producer Tom Rothrock – who worked with James on his multi-platinum selling debut Back To Bedlam – and also brought in Martin Terefe who has credits in the musical work of KT Tunstall, Martha Wainwright and Jason Mraz.
Discussing the album’s name, James Blunt said: “There’s just something romantic, old-school and lonely about the moon landings. A nostalgic memory of something huge that we can hardly believe we once achieved, and for some sad reason, can’t achieve again – like first love.
“This is a much more personal album, and also quite back to basics. It’s about me and Tom, the producer, finding where the story all started and where we are now.
“I’m not trying to prove anything,” James Blunt continued.
“I haven’t been trying to second-guess the audience or over-thinking things. It’s just me alone in a sound-booth, looking through the glass at Tom, trying to express myself simply and honestly. This is the album I would have recorded, perhaps, if Back To Bedlam hadn’t sold anything.”
The first single from James Blunt’s new record will be Bonfire Heart on October 7, with the album available on October 21.