In a move that is expected to significantly reduce the frequency of attempted torch raids on Alec Duffy‘s Brooklyn apartment, Sufjan Stevens has released a new single—on the Web, to everyone. It’s a ballad he composed years ago when he was in the throes of a theme kick—songs for each day of the week, each planet in the solar system, et cetera—that never quite subsided.
This one, called “Sofia’s Song,” is a very small banjo tune dedicated to Sofia Coppola, written during a pre-fame phase when Sufjan was feverishly composing songs based on names. You can listen to it here, on the Asthmatic Kitty Web site. The label published it with an essay by Sufjan reflecting on the clumsy ardor and blessed earnesty of his schoolboy days, when he wrote the song. In its simplicity and imperfection, “Sofia’s Song” is—not accidentally—an appropriate companion to this brief biography. And this time, you won’t have to sit awkwardly in some guy’s den to hear it.