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Too Close by Alex Clare

Album: The Lateness Of The HourReleased: 2011Charted:
  • London-born singer-songwriter Alex Clare grew up listening to his father's Jazz records. He took up the trumpet and drums as a youngster, but as he grew older he graduated to guitar-based songwriting, playing open-mike nights with original material. Clare dated Amy Winehouse for a year during these early days, after meeting her during a performance at The Hawley Arms in Camden, North London. A demo earned him a deal with the Island label in the U.K. His debut album, The Lateness Of The Hour, which was produced by M.I.A collaborators Diplo and Switch, was released in July 2011.
  • "Too Close" was released as the second single from the album. Clare explained in publicity materials that, "It's about a friend I had of the opposite sex. It's no longer a friendship…"
  • The song became Clare's first U.S. Hot 100 hit after featuring in a Microsoft Internet Explorer 9 commercial.
  • The song was inspired by a relationship with a close friend that turned romantic. "One thing led to another, but it didn't really work out and that felt too close," Clare told Billboard magazine.
  • The song's success marked a turnaround in Clare's fortunes. Prior to it entering the singles chart, Clare had been forced to take a job as an estate agent after being dropped by his record label.
  • The artwork for the single features a bear and wolf ready to attack each other. Clare explained to MTV News: "I'm kind of into the minimal side of art on that end. I kind of thought, look, you want this song to depict conflict, you don't want to go with the kind of day-glo, electronic feel. You want to go with something that had some thought and love go into it."
  • Several Major League Baseball teams have used this song for player entrances. They include the Cincinnati Reds (for Zack Cozart's entrance) and the Washington Nationals (for Danny Espinosa's entrance).
  • This topped the German singles chart, spending three weeks at the peak position.
  • The song appears in the end credits of the film Taken 2.
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