Shins fan Zach Braff asked the band's frontman James Mercer to pen this song for his Wish I Was Here film. Braff told NPR that he asked Mercer to think about writing something original, "inspired by his first impression of seeing the film."
"Not only did he say yes," the director/actor added, "but what he came back with gives me goosebumps every time I hear it. He is a savant."
Wish I Was Here is Braff's directorial follow-up to Garden State, in which Natalie Portman played the Scrubs actor The Shins' song "New Slang" telling him he would change his life.
Mercer told Billboard magazine that after initially struggling originally with coming up with anything for the movie, he is pleased with the final result. "Zach contacted me and wanted to see if I could contribute anything," he recalled. "I struggled with it for a few days and called him and told him I was having a hard time coming up with anything. I was trying to write about specific themes in the movie and I found that to be a bit of a challenge."
"He told me to just write something I felt like would fit the film, so I just wrote a song I felt summed up the movie, and he just loved it," Mercer continued. "And I think it's one of the best things I've ever done; people probably say that time of s--t a lot, but I'm really proud of it."