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Chris Martin Blames Self for Split With Gwyneth, Loves One Direction

The band has also hidden Martin's handwritten lyrics to their new album 'Ghost Stories' in libraries around the world

Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin
Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for J/P Haitian Relief Organization
April 28, 2014 1:25 PM ET

Coldplay frontman Chris Martin says he's responsible for his "conscious uncoupling" with wife Gwyneth Paltrow, with whom he has two children. "About two years ago I was a mess, really, because I can't enjoy the things that we are good at and I can't enjoy the great things around me because I'm burdened by this," Martin said in the interview with BBC Radio 1, which was broadcast today and quoted in the New York Daily News. "I've got to not blame anyone else and make some changes."

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The musician cites personal issues as the impetus for the couple drifting apart from one another. "I wouldn't use the word breakdown – this was more a realization about trying to grow up, basically," Martin said. "If you can't open yourself up, you can't appreciate the wonder inside. So you can be with someone very wonderful, but because of your own issues you cannot let that be celebrated in the right way."

The process of growing apart greatly influenced the music that will appear on Coldplay's next record, Ghost Stories, due out May 19th. Martin said, hypothetically, that "everyone needs to be broken in some way," meaning that everyone must endure personal trials and that, for him, he used them as a creative inspiration. "You have to really not run away from that stuff," he said. "Life throws these colorful challenges at you. . . what we decided to do on Ghost Stories was to really be honest about it and say, 'This is what's been happening.'"

Although the group's recently released track "Oceans" seems to deal explicitly with a dying relationship, the song he said was inspired by his realizations was the album's sentimental and hope-filled lead single, "Magic," in which Martin sings, "I don't want anybody else but you" over and over again. "It's not a question of you either really love someone or you really hate someone, it's more nuanced than that - especially with the modern world's complications - like travelling and all the stuff that comes to life, and illness and addiction and all that sort of thing," Martin told the BBC. "It's just saying – ultimately – there is magic between two people no matter what anyone else thinks."

Beyond his relationship, Martin also discussed his plan for releasing the album's lyrics into the world. Martin's handwritten lyrics have been hidden in ghost-story books in libraries worldwide. The group is posting clues to their whereabouts via their Twitter account today. One of the hidden envelopes contains a golden ticket, which will allow the finder and a guest to fly to London and see Coldplay perform at Royal Albert Hall in July, one of a handful of scattered tour dates.

He also addressed his fondness for another U.K.-based pop group. "I'm saying One Direction are brilliant and I'm not kidding," he said. "You know why? Because their songs are really good and I don't think that any of them are going to go solo. Harry has come to a couple of our shows. I was too enamored with his hair cut. I was having a hot flush."

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Song Stories

“Nightshift”

The Commodores | 1984

The year after soul legends Marvin Gaye and Jackie Wilson died, songwriter Dennis Lambert asked members of the Commodores to give him a tape of ideas. "And the one from Walter Orange has this wonderful bass line," said co-writer Franne Golde. "Plus the lyric, 'Marvin, he was a friend of mine' ... Within 10 minutes, we had decided it should be something like a modern R&B version of 'Rock 'n' Roll Heaven,' and I just said, 'Nightshift.'" This tribute to the recently deceased musicians was the band's only hit without Lionel Richie, who had left for a solo career.

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