This session, from July 2007, is part of our Vintage Cafe series, in which we revisit some of our best studio performances.
Glen Hansard and Markéta Irglová never set out to make a record together: The two had toured Europe together on and off, but that was mostly to provide a break from Hansard's long-running main band, The Frames. Then the two were approached to record a pair of songs for a film — and given four days in the studio, which they spent recording enough material for a full album, complete with the accompaniment of strings.
Not only did they make a great record — 2006's breathtakingly sweet The Swell Season — but they also wound up making a great movie. Though initially seen as mere musical contributors, Hansard and Irglova were ultimately cast as the leads in Once. A surprise box-office hit that's been almost universally hailed by critics, Once has done what 15 years in The Frames couldn't do for Hansard: make him a star in America.
In this segment, Hansard discusses the movie, as well as how he and Irglová first met and the strong parallels between the movie and his own life.