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Falling Slowly


Falling Slowly

"Falling Slowly"
Song by Glen Hansard and Markéta Irglová from the album Once
Released April 21, 2006 (The Swell Season)
September 22, 2006 (The Cost)
May 22, 2007 (Once soundtrack)
February 2008 (radio single)
Genre Indie folk
Indie rock
Length 4:50 (Album Version)
4:04 (Soundtrack Version)
4:35 (The Frames Version)
Label Overcoat Recordings
Writer Glen Hansard, Markéta Irglová
Producer Glen Hansard

"Falling Slowly" is a song written and performed by Glen Hansard and Markéta Irglová, as well as by Hansard's band, The Frames. It appeared in their 2006 film Once, from which it won the Academy Award for Best Original Song at the 80th Academy Awards.[1]


The song was written while Once was in production. John Carney developed the script around songs provided by Hansard and Irglová.[2] In the movie, the duo play the song in Walton's music shop in Dublin, with Hansard on guitar and Irglová on piano. The couple performed it at gigs in various European venues over the next two years.[3] Versions appeared in 2006 on two albums: The Cost by Hansard's band The Frames, and The Swell Season, an album by Hansard and Irglová.[4] According to the "First Showing," article, After almost getting her acceptance speech skipped and almost not getting to say a word for her acceptance at the 2008 ceremony after their Oscar win, Irglova made a speech about the song in which at the end of the speech she says, “This song was written from a perspective of hope, and hope at the end of the day connects us all, no matter how different we are...” [5]


The song charted at #16 in the Irish Singles Chart when it was first released by The Frames. The Glen Hansard and Markéta Irglová version charted at #28 in December 2007, before peaking at #2 in March 2008, following the song's Oscar win.

Chart (2008) Peak
position [6]
Irish Singles Chart 2
Canadian Hot 100 8
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 61


The song was nominated at the 2008 Grammy Awards for Best Song Written For Motion Picture, Television Or Other Visual Media; it lost to "Love You I Do" from Dreamgirls.[7]

The song won the Academy Award for Best Original Song on 24 February 2008, ahead of the choral gospel song "Raise It Up" from August Rush and three songs from the modern Disney musical Enchanted.[4] The song's win marked the fourth year in a row that the Oscar winner had not been nominated for the Golden Globe Award for Best Original Song. For some time, the song's eligibility for an Oscar was in dispute because it had been performed and recorded prior to the release of Once.[4] The Academy ruled that because the song had been composed for the movie, and the prior public exposure during the long period that the movie took to produce had been minimal, it remained eligible.[3] The Academy had ruled likewise on a similar controversy involving 2004 Best Original Song nominee "In the Deep". According to the Academy rules, the song was disqualified because there was some dispute over whether or not the song was written originally for the film. The song was up against three others: songs from "Enchanted" and "Raise it Up" from "August Rush"[8] But they were still able to win despite the many disputes surrounding the issue of Academy eligibility.


"Falling Slowly" also appears on the original cast album of the stage adaptation of Once, performed by Steve Kazee and Cristin Milioti; this album won the Grammy Award for Best Musical Theater Album.

"Falling Slowly" has been covered by former American Idol winner Kris Allen.

"Falling Slowly" has been covered by synthpop group Joy Electric on their 2009 covers album, Favorites at Play. It has also been covered by Emma's Imagination. Derek Webb recorded a cover of the song on his democratically-selected cover album Democracy, Vol. 2.

"Falling Slowly" has been covered by Korean stars, Sunny of Girls' Generation and Sungmin of Super Junior in MBC's Music Island Lalala.

Crystal Bowersox and Lee Dewyze also covered this song on American Idol in 2010. The song was sung in the battle rounds of The Voice of Germany in 2011 by Michael Schulte and Laura & Vicky Maas.

"Falling Slowly" has also been covered by the operatic pop group Il Divo in their album Wicked Game as a Spanish rendition, as "Falling Slowly (Te Prometo.)"

"Falling Slowly" was covered by Damian McGinty on Celtic Thunder's Voyage album in 2012.

"Falling Slowly" was also covered by Linda Eder for her 2009 album, Soundtrack.

Eddie Vedder has covered the song numerous times on his 2012 solo tour, accompanied by Hansard himself.

The song was covered by The Jonas Brothers at their comeback show on October 2012, after Nick spent time with the Broadway cast during his stint in How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying.

Kimberley Walsh of Girls Aloud will be covering the song for her album Centre Stage to be released in 2013. The track will be released as Walsh's second single in October 2013.

Josh Groban covered "Falling Slowly" on his 2013 album, All That Echoes.

Korean actor Lee Min Ho of Boys Over Flowers has covered the song on one of the opening of his fan meetings.

Ball in the House covered the song for their album, One Night Only. They also sing it off-mic at concerts.

The Glee actors Darren Criss and Lea Michele also covered it live during Big Brother Big Sister Of Greater Los Angeles 2012.

Covered by Andrea Begley on her 2013 album "The Message".

Critical Reception

After Kris Allen’s performance on American Idol, “Falling Slowly,” the song went from the 33rd most popular and downloaded song on iTunes to the 29th most popular and downloaded song but the appearance was not "American Idol" judge Randy's favorite performance but the audience was clearly moved by Allen's performance. [9] Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova’s performance on screen and on stage amazed so many people that even Bob Dylan wanted them to be his opening act on his World Tour. [10] According to "Entertainment Weekly," "The film and lyrics to the song were popular search terms on Google this morning". [11]


External links

  • YouTube channel.
  • includes material relating to the song.
  • "Falling Slowly" guitar chords and lyrics from The Frames site.
  • "Falling Slowly" To listen to a sample of song from

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