You may have thought you'd heard enough Coldplay to last you a lifetime. That is, until you watched Adam Rippon free skate to a Coldplay song at the 2018 Winter Olympics. The athlete glided across the ice to "O" and on top of changing their minds about Coldplay, also stole viewers' hearts.
The 2018 Olympic Games are the first to allow skaters to perform to songs that have lyrics. And though watching ice skating routines has always been the highlight of the games, the new rule change is making them even more captivating. Before the games began, Rippon spoke at length with Billboard about the rule change and his taste in music. He explained why he was so drawn to Coldplay's "O" in the first place.
Basically it was this idea that I was this bird that's the leader of the flock and I had this broken wing and toward the end I flew on. I had this program two years ago, and life imitates art and I broke my foot. Now when I do the program I think maybe my wing shouldn't be broken anymore. So now I'm flying through the whole thing. Chris Martin has this voice that resonates through a whole arena.
Well, now that he explains it that way.
Billboard also noted that the music rule change happened around the same time he came out as gay. He suggested to the magazine that the timing couldn't have been better. It allowed him to express himself and take chances.
Yes, it led to me having a more free attitude. If I want to skate to this club song, I'm gonna skate to this club song. If I want to skate to Coldplay, I'll skate to Coldplay. It was the perfect moment in my life to take risks, to take chances. Coming out was a huge moment in my life, and it felt very liberating and at the same time I could skate to something liberating.
And skate to Coldplay he did. The song "O," also known as "O (Fly On)," came out on Ghost Stories, the band's sixth studio album released in 2014. The song is actually made of two separate songs: "O" and "Fly On" as you might have guessed.
In the normal version of the album, there are two minutes of silence between the tracks, and the deluxe version fuses them together. Though the single ranked 107 and 108 in France and the United Kingdom, respectively, it didn't score as high in the charts in the United States.
After his performance to the song, Rippon spoke with NBC and said that he'll be cheering on his teammates now.
I want to be one of the first medals here at the games and we have a great team. I'm so proud to be on this team. You know, I went out there and did my job, so I'm going to be cheering for the rest of my teammates today.
Then, the reporter asked Rippon if the Olympics is everything he expected. "Andrea," he sighed, "it's like pretty awesome. I highly recommend it. If you ever have the option, like come to the Olympics. It's like a fun time. And you know, today was just so special. So much fun." And America fell in love with him all over again.
In fact, lots of people were pretty upset the men's free skate judges didn't give his performance a better score. Ultimately, he ranked third place behind Canada and Russia.
Regardless of what he scored in the judges' eyes on Sunday night, it looks like he's secured the number one spot in his fans' hearts.