Singer-songwriter Angel Olsen has teamed up with composer Emile Mosseri for a cover of “Mr Lonely,” which was originally featured on Bobby Vinton’s 1962 studio album Roses Are Red. This song is featured in the film and trailer for Kajillionaire, directed by Caméra d’Or award winner Miranda July and scored by Mosseri. Olsen first premiered this cover last month for The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon.
This take on “Mr. Lonely” is a lot more atmospheric than the playful original, as Olsen’s melancholic voice lightly glides over the soft orchestral instrumental that gradually build up. Whereas the original had a more playful melancholic spirit in Vinton’s vocals, Olsen gives the song a more dramatic intensity, that perfectly melds with a cinematic style. These vocals morph into an ethereal form when the instrumental kicks up in the mix, as it is greeted by harps and stunning string arrangements that solidify its place in film.
“So at Sundance, when Miranda and I started talking about making a version of ‘Mr. Lonely’ for the album, Angel’s name was at the top of the list,” Mosseri recalled regarding the song’s recording. “We got lucky! she happened to be in LA for a week right before the pandemic hit. We built a version of the song out of the fabric of the score, and Angel came by and sang it so beautifully. It was a truly magical day.”
This upcoming film is set to focus on Theresa (Debra Winger) and Robert (Richard Jenkins), who have spent 26 years training their only daughter, Old Dolio (Evan Rachel Wood), to swindle like them. During one of these scams, they charm a stranger (Gina Rodriguez) into joining with them, before this plan collapses.
Olsen is fresh off the release of a Whole New Mess, which debuted earlier this month and All Mirrors, which came out in 2019. This isn’t the only cover she’s tackled this year, as she has taken on the works of George Harrison, Tom Petty, Roxy Music, Tori Amos and Bruce Springsteen earlier this year. She also premiered a new track from Whole New Mess titled “Waving Smiling” last month.
Photo Credit: Owen Ela