Pop Genius Max Martin Gives Extremely Rare Interview To Accept Polar Music Prize

A couple weeks ago, I got an email from an employee of the Swedish financial newspaper Dagens Industri, asking a question about this Max Martin feature I did in 2015. Turns out, the paper was working on a Martin story of their own. I asked if they’d be doing an interview with the reclusive genius — figuring if anybody was gonna get one, it would be a Swedish financial newspaper, right? — but received the following response:

No interviews :-( Music biz Greta Garbo …

Amazing, right? The guy is the most important and influential songwriter and producer of the last 20+ years, and he’s done maybe … 10 interviews over the course of his entire career? Whatever the number, they’re really few and far between. So it’s no small feat that he agreed to sit down, on camera, with the people behind the Polar Music Prize, who just named Martin their 2016 laureate.

To be fair, Martin manages to say almost exactly nothing (in Swedish, subtitled into English) during his time on screen, but it’s pretty exciting just seeing the guy speak. There are also interviews with some of the singers with whom Martin has worked — Britney Spears, Adam Levine, Katy Perry, Pink, A.J. McLean and Brian Litrell from the Backstreet Boys, and Justin Timberlake — who offer a bit more insight into Martin’s process. My favorite anecdote is this one from Perry:

He is … very specific when it comes to vocals, and a bit of a … taskmaster.

Love that guy so much. Anyway, if you’re a fan, it’s worth watching. Check it out.