In the span of ten minutes I went through so many different songs that I couldn’t put my finger on a theme, aside from love. It wasn’t only good love, it was betrayal, sex positivity, and regret. So in response to Whoopie’s exercise, I can’t create one list. I’d have to categorize each song and it would inevitably, eventually look like a detectives closed-case string-connection chart.
Take Fiona Apple’s Shadow Boxer for example.
Once my flame, twice my burn
This told me you have to prepare for loss and grief in losing a relationship. A little paranoia might crop up, so take up a hobby like boxing. Most albums are about life and relationships and they fit into a make-up or break up binary. Suffice it to say, I learned a lot of vocabulary from Fiona’s Tidal as well as the nuances of relationships, personal processes, and writing. Thank you 😊
Ms. Hill was also a beacon of light for young women navigating relationships and self worth.
This is a phrase that serves as a warning. Know what you’re getting into and don’t be a hypocrite. Miseducation was a phenomenal piece of work and spoke to choices, the ones people influence and the ones we need to make for our happiness.
Now I have to admit I was a hopeless romantic until I got out of high school and, perhaps, that’s what I need to consider. I had a view when I was an adolescent and once I started creeping into my 20s I realized it was my friends, not the media, that shaped these notions of love, marriage, virginity, beauty, hope, loss. Don’t get me wrong, sad songs can make you cry, love songs often do…
But that’s for the fantasy. They’re just writing and singing what it is we are living. When I listen to new popular music today I half cringe because that’s what you do when you pass a certain age. However, these songs, my womyn and men are simply a reflection of our lives or the ways in which we want our lives to be.
Perhaps SZA, (pictured at the top) is the most recent example of this play on all emotional cylinders. I don’t want to go too in depth with her songs (in the title of this article) because others already have explained them to death. Or, rather, criticized to an unnecessary extent. She’s speaking from a young woman’s perspective and it’s easy to use misogyny towards black women to value and devalue their bodies. Is it warm enough for you/outside/inside me me me me…
In conclusion…Culture shapes people because people shape culture. You can see it in the amendments to the wedding industry. As soon as a new idea comes out it becomes a category with variations to make couples feel unique. Meta. Meta. Meta.
I would love to examine your favorite songs to help you see what story you created for your romantic life. And at the very least, enjoy!