As of yesterday, Justin Timberlake and Matt Morris’ take on “Hallelujah” from the Hope For Haiti Now telethon was the most downloaded track on iTunes from the charity event. Now it’s simply the most downloaded song on iTunes, period.
The Hope For Haiti Now compilation will reportedly debut at #1 on the Billboard Top 200 Albums chart this week, but it was the two pals’ somber cover of Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah” that struck a particular chord with viewers. However, according to Morris, there was almost another song the pair went with for the telecast instead.
Timberlake and Morris, who’ve known each other since doing time on The Mickey Mouse Club together in the early ’90s, also toyed around with the idea of covering the Beatles’ “Help.”
“It didn’t compare to what naturally came out of rehearsing ‘Hallelujah’,” Matt Morris tells Spinner. “There was a gravity to the event that influenced the performance of the song. When you approach a cover, especially one that has been covered as frequently as it has, we tried to make something beautiful. Anyone can make something new: change the time signature or add an instrument into the mix, but the melody of this song doesn’t need much. It hardly needs anything.”
Ultimately, the version of “Hallelujah” they went with was the one popularized by Jeff Buckley on his 1994 Grace album
And speaking of 1994, here’s a pic we found online of Matt, who’s now 30, from his Disney days. Awwww.