When AWOLNATION debuted the single “The Best” in autumn of 2019, it seemed as if it could easily serve duel purpose as an inspiration for reaching for greatness, and an accidental parody of an American president who has little idea of what such greatness actually requires.
Now the exalted LA band have just released a new version featuring the fierce young British-Canadian songstress Alice Merton (whose 2017 single “No Roots” has racked up an astonishing 219 million views on YouTube). But in the context of this harrowing current coronavirus outbreak, the lyrics to the track have seemingly taken on an entirely new meaning. Indeed, as Merton and AWOLNATION frontman Aaron Bruno together intone, “Me I wanna walk a little bit taller, oh / Me I wanna feel a little bit stronger, oh / Me I wanna think a little bit smarter,” it sounds like a veritable survival mantra.
Perhaps more importantly, it also reminds us of the power of music to reach across crisis and unite us when we need it most. And in truth never have we needed it more.
“I’m very excited to have Alice join me on this song,” Bruno enthuses. “I’m glad that we were able to connect to create this new version, even though we are in different parts of the world as we all stay home right now.”