Jackson Browne collaborated with singer/songwriter Leslie Mendelson on a song titled “A Human Touch” that’s heard during the end credits of the recently released documentary 5B. Now an official video for the heartfelt duet has premiered online.
The clip features footage of Browne and Mendelson singing the tune in a room. Jackson plays piano, and we see various scenes from the film, which tells the story of the first hospital ward in the U.S. created to treat AIDS and HIV patients: the 5B ward at San Francisco General Hospital.
The video includes footage of various the nurses, doctors and caregivers interacting with dying AIDS patients in the ward, which opened in 1983.
Browne tells Billboard that he was approached by 5B‘s co-director, Paul Haggis, to contribute a song to the film, but admits he was apprehensive, partly because he “was in the middle of other things.”
He says after he watched the doc, “I thought, ‘God, this is certainly worth of a song,’ but I just didn’t even know how to approach.” Haggis then put him in touch with Mendelson and her regular collaborator Steve McEwan, and the three of them wrote the song together.
“They came up with this great song, most of it, really, although I added a few lines,” Browne explains. “But because it was so good and in the right direction, it wasn’t hard to get involved and schedule it in.”
Jackson says he enjoyed working with Mendelson and McEwan, and hopes to collaborate with them again.
“I love those two, and they’re great friends now,” he tells Billboard.
Meanwhile, Browne reveals that he’s writing new songs, “at a snail’s pace,” for his next studio album — a follow-up to 2014’s Standing in the Breach.
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