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Call it a fairy-tale ending - or maybe a new beginning. The Killers and Bruce Springsteen appeared on The Today Show on Wednesday to perform their new song "Dustland," a long-anticipated collaboration for the rockers.
"Dustland," a rerecording of The Killers' original song "A Dustland Fairytale" (which first appeared on their 2008 album, Day & Age), features lead singer Brandon Flowers trading verses with "The Boss" and them harmonizing together. Springsteen and the group have crossed paths throughout the years, with Flowers joining the iconic singer live on "Thunder Road" a decade ago and the two performers uniting for a conversation on Springsteen's Apple Music radio show. But "Dustland" marks the first time the two have officially collaborated on music.
In an interview with Today Show host Hoda Kotb, Flowers admitted that he was a ball of nerves at his first meeting with Springsteen. "I was a little embarrassed, actually, because there's been a lot of headlines about his influence that had entered into The Killers' picture," Flowers said. "I didn't know how to respond to that. I had a little bit of trepidation."
Springsteen, however, was touched by his influence on Flowers. "It makes you happy to see where your music goes and who it inspires," he said. "I find that to be very thrilling."
To celebrate the release, Flowers posted a long statement on social media, opening up about how Springsteen initially reached out to him in February 2020 to suggest they record together by texting the singer about one of his performances just as he was about to board a plane at JFK.
Ultimately, the COVID-19 pandemic halted the pair's plans to join forces. But it looks like they're finally making up for lost time.
In his tweets, Flowers also explained that "Dustland" is an ode to his parents, specifically his mother Jean, who died in 2010. "'Dustland' was written in the middle of her battle with cancer," Flowers wrote. "It was an attempt to better understand my dad, who is sometimes a mystery to me. To grieve for my mother. To acknowledge their sacrifices and maybe even catch a glimpse of just how strong love needs to be to make it in this world. It was my therapy. It was cathartic."
Flowers went on to explain how Springsteen helped with that healing. "Bruce has written a lot about people like my parents and found a whole lot of beauty in otherwise invisible people's hopes and dreams" he wrote. "Their struggles, and their losses… I'm grateful to him for opening this door for me."
Watch the official video "Dustland" below.