“Shallow” is a slow-burning ballad that finds Cooper and Gaga trading verses over a twinkling acoustic guitar and a resonant piano. The track moves steadily towards a potent Gaga vocal run that culminates in a chilling final chorus, while the song also boasts some impressive harmonizing from Cooper and the pop star. “Shallow” also arrives with a video that mixes footage of Gaga and Cooper performing the track in A Star Is Born alongside other clips from the movie.
Gaga wrote “Shallow” with Mark Ronson, Andrew Wyatt and Anthony Rossomando, while she co-produced the track with Benjamin Rice. The song premiered on Zane Lowe’s Beats 1 radio show, where Gaga also spoke about the film, Cooper’s musical talents and the connection between her new movie and her last album, Joanne.
She recalled that when Cooper pitched her on the project, he came to her house and the two performed an impromptu duet of Creedence Clearwater Revival’s “Midnight Special.” Not long after they started, Gaga said she had to stop because she was so struck by Cooper’s voice.
“I was blown away by it, you know, because the truth is that there’s people that can technically sing perfectly and have no soul,” Gaga said. “And with Bradley, he just sings from his soul and he knows how to tell a story when he’s singing and I heard it right away. And I knew in that moment – you know, I’m kind of a bit of a snob when it comes to watching actors play rock star, but I’m telling you, I was like, this man knows how to be a rock star.”
The singer also spoke about making herself vulnerable in a new way for A Star Is Born, and how her performance was a fitting continuation of the work she was doing on Joanne.
“I think things come in sequence and artists, you know, I think that we move to a certain cadence in a sequence in the way that we want to put things into the world that we believe in,” Gaga said. “But especially with the song ‘Shallow’ being such a crucial moment in the film you know. I did work on Joanne with Mark Ronson and I worked on ‘Shallow’ with Mark Ronson and Andrew Wyatt and Anthony Rossomando. And we made this song for Ally and Jack and it’s such a special song you know. It’s two people talking to each other and talking about the need and the drive to dive in to the deep end and stay away from the shallow area.”
The A Star Is Born soundtrack will be released October 5th via Interscope, while the film opens that same day.