Greta Gerwig knew using Dave Matthews Band’s 1996 classic “Crash Into Me” in her solo directorial debut “Lady Bird” was so important that she hand wrote a letter to Matthews asking if she had his permission to use the track. Matthews agreed, and the song’s appearance in Gerwig’s Oscar nominee went on to be one of the great music moments in film in 2017. Even those people who hate Dave Matthews Band and “Crash Into Me” found themselves falling for the song in “Lady Bird.” Speaking to Vulture, Matthews reacted to “Lady Bird” and said he is flattered by the way Gerwig incorporated his song into the film.
“Without question — and some express it with more vinegar than others — there are people who truly don’t like my band,” Matthews said “I think a lot of them just go, ‘I hate the Dave Matthews Band’ because they saw someone they didn’t like in one of our T-shirts. But everything to do with ‘Lady Bird’ was flattering. It was so lovely to see the song used as a central tool in someone else’s story. And the moment in the movie when it plays is so beautiful: Lady Bird takes a stand, you know?”
“It was also nice for me to see the song through someone else’s eyes because I have a strange relationship with a lot of music that I’ve written,” he added. “I listen to it and I’m like, ‘What am I talking about? This is bullshit.’ So seeing ‘Crash Into Me’ in ‘Lady Bird’ allowed me to hear my music without having to impose myself on it.”
“Lady Bird” earned four Oscar nominations earlier this year, including best picture and best director. Gerwig became only the fifth woman nominated in the director category. The filmmaker told Seth Meyers during Oscar season that she wanted to include “Crash Into Me” in her film because it’s “the most romantic song ever.”
When it came to the letter to Dave Matthews, she must have had the famous acoustic singer by saying that “Crash Into Me” was, in her opinion, “The most romantic song ever.”
Dave Matthews Band will release its new album, “Come Tomorrow,” June 8. Read Matthews’ entire Vulture interview here.