Viva la Vida (4:00)

Cover of Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends

From Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends and 62 other releases

“Viva la Vida” (Spanish: “Long Live Life”) is the second, Grammy-nominated single released from the English band Coldplay album, Viva La Vida. It was initially released only with iTunes Store pre-orders of the album on 7 May 2008, later becoming a download-only single on 25 May 2008. With over 3 million plays, the song earned the number one spot on the Best of 2008.

The song was used in an advertising campaign for Apple’s iPod and iTunes Store while Coldplay performed the song live for the first time at the 2008 MTV Movie Awards. Two versions of the music video were released, one directed by Hype Williams, and the other, an homage to the music video for Depeche Mode’s Enjoy the Silence, by Anton Corbijn.

Unlike the typical arrangement of Coldplay songs, in which the piano and/or guitar dominate, “Viva la Vida” mostly consists of a string section playing the song’s upbeat riff, along with a steady bass drum beat, bass guitar, and Chris Martin’s vocals.

Coldplay were the first British group to hit #1 on the Hot 100 for over ten years. The previous British group to top the US singles chart was the Spice Girls with Wannabe in February 1997. (See for plenty more trivia on “Viva La Vida”). The california based hip-hop/reggae band Dirtyheads cover this song.

The BBC reports (Dec 5th 2008) that Coldplay are being sued over this song by Joe Satriani for plagiarism of his tune If I Could Fly.


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