The much anticipated new release Li(f)e by revolutionary rapper Sage Francis, due out May 11th via Anti-Records, features more than a few inspired musical collaborations. Yet none of them so seemingly unexpected and ultimately transcendent as the pairing on the track "Best Of Times" featuring Francis' extraordinary lyricism and the music of noted French composer Yann Tierson. An intensely inventive classically based multi instrumentalist, Tierson is perhaps best known for creating the powerfully evocative soundtrack to the beloved 2001 French film "AmÃ©lie."
On the song "Best Of Times," what begins as simple atmospheric accompaniment, gradually builds into an epic crescendo, providing an absolutely perfect musical score for Francis' increasingly powerful confessional narrative. As unorthodox a partnership as it might initially appear, the anarchistic rapper and the classical composer, the collaboration is by no means a novelty. Sage Francis was well aware of Yann Tierson before the making of Li(f)e.
"I sought out Yann's soundtrack for "Amelie" immediately after first seeing the film," Francis explains. "I would play the main song from it on piano from time to time. And when I received the music from him it just felt so heavy to me, so incredibly epic that I knew I had to make the most of it. I didn't know what to do and then I stumbled upon this letter that I had written to my girlfriend a few years ago explaining where I was in life and what she meant to me and what I was hoping to accomplish. And the very first line of that letter ended up being the first line of the song. And when I put that down, it just sparked all these intense childhood memories. The song ended up being my own little movie with words."