I am not the kind of person who can listen to a song and immediately absorb all the lyrics and meanings that the artist is trying to convey to me. I'm the person who listens to songs on repeat because every time I listen I pick up more and more. It's annoying to others and I've definitely been called out on it by friends who can hear what I'm listening to when I'm wearing headphones (future me can deal with the deafness this will cause).
So at first I thought this is why I completely missed the mark on Big Data's song Automatic. It's a fucking amazing song, definitely in my top 20, but when I first heard it I thought it was a happy song. Bittersweet at the worst, but in general I was leaning happy. I was literally arguing that it was sad in tone only, but the lyrics are fine. And just so you all don't think I'm an idiot, here's the intro:
"I feel so much better today
Now that you're mine
Couldn't do it alone
And I never will again"
The start to a love story right? Something beautiful and lovely.
It's still beautiful, but it's incredibly sad. It's about someone who completely loses themselves in their love for someone else. And learning that made me realize something; I didn't think it was happy because I hadn't understood the lyrics, it was because my first reaction to these particular lyrics was that they had to be happy. That someone who can't function without another human is somehow a good thing. And that's depressing as fuck. It's making me reevaluate my whole mindset because how can I; a person who loves the idea of independence, who traveled across the world by herself, who's been living life with no desire to settle down; how can I think that these lyrics are happy?
" don't even have to try
That right there is sad. Has society trained me to want a man in my life so badly that I can't even listen to a (let me face it, very obviously sad) song and not even realize the meaning? I even ignored the tone of the music and pretended that the lyrics were happy. That makes me feel dumb, and I hate feeling dumb. It's the one thing that I will never let anyone call me because I can be bitchy, selfish, and gross as fuck but I am not stupid.
The fact that this song has caused me so much anxiety, and I've put so much thought into it and felt so deeply for these lyrics lets me know how incredible it is. Artists who stir up emotions and shift mindsets have been some of the most major influences throughout history and I'm so impressed that the trend has continued. Only we can change our own mindsets, but we all need help from outside influences. If one of those influences happens to be this gem of a song then we can all be thankful for a creative mind at work.