Grab your berets, pull up your knee socks and pull out your portable record player. On May 13, American Laundromat Records will release I Saved Latin: A Tribute to Wes Anderson, a 23-song, two-disk compilation of cover songs culled from Anderson’s various films.
The compilation includes contributions from indie faves like Telekinesis, PHOX, Matt Pond, William Fitzsimmons and Margot and the Nuclear So & Sos, a band who took their name from an Anderson character.
Singer-songwriter Juliana Hatfield chose to cover Elliott Smith’s “Needle In the Hay,” a powerful song that was used to soundtrack a particularly poignant scene in Anderson’s 2001 film, Royal Tenenbaums.
Hatfield’s cover of the song shows Smith’s continued influence on her sound — an influence she fully admits. “I have written three fan letters in my life,” Hatfield told Paste. “One was to Paul Westerberg, one to the band X — both written when I was a teenager — and later, when I was in my twenties, I wrote to Elliott Smith at Kill Rock Stars. I was so in love with ‘Needle in the Hay’ and the rest of the self-titled album on which it appears that I was compelled to dork out and gush to Elliott that his music moved me.”
On the track, Hatfield pays homage to the original song’s devastating intensity while making it uniquely her own. Listen below: