Sometimes it takes two to tackle The Boss. That happened this week when New Zealand’s musical royalty Lorde and Marlon Williams joined forces to cover a Bruce Springsteen classic in NZ’s biggest city, Auckland.
During a concert Wednesday night (March 31) at The Hollywood, the local pair dueted on Springsteen’s “Tougher Than the Rest,” lifted from his 1987 LP Tunnel of Love.
Lorde is keeping a good thing going. Back in 2014, Springsteen covered her hit “Royals” while on tour in the Land of the Long White Cloud. She returned the favor when she inserted Springsteen’s “I’m on Fire” into her set on the 2017 Melodrama World Tour.
Lorde made her special appearance this week during the encore of Williams’ set, in support of his 2020 album release Plastic Bouquet, a country collaboration with Kacy & Clayton.
Williams has been tagged as the “impossible love child of Elvis, Roy Orbison & Townes Van Zandt,” and is arguably best-known to U.S. audiences for his on-stage role in the 2018 hit film A Star Is Born.
Lorde (born Ella Yelich-O’Connor) has had the world at her feet since “Royals” ruled the Billboard Hot 100 for nine weeks and set a new record for the longest streak atop the Alternative Songs chart by a woman. Back in November 2019, she hinted that her third album was “in the oven.”
Watch the performance below.
— Lorde fix 🥀 (@Lorde_fix_media) March 31, 2021
🥲 @lorde came out of hiding last night to cover @springsteen's 'tougher than the rest' with @marlonwmusic capping off a sold-out run of auckland shows on his current nz tour 🥲 pic.twitter.com/GduhcrC0go
— Coup De Main 🧣 (@coupdemain) March 31, 2021
Amazing show tonight by Marlon Williams, the man who might just be New Zealand’s greatest living singer, complete with a surprise encore duet with guest, the divine Lorde. Smashing! pic.twitter.com/q6DCPxKlT5
— Nik Dirga (@nikdirga) March 31, 2021