Saturday, October 24, 2015

HEAR THIS: Adele returns to say "Hello"

Hello from the other side
I must've called a thousand times to tell you
I'm sorry, for everything that I've done
But when I call you never seem to be home

Hello from the outside
At least I can say that I've tried to tell you
I'm sorry, for breaking your heart
But it don't matter, it clearly doesn't tear you apart anymore

Hello, how are you?
It's so typical of me to talk about myself
I'm sorry, I hope that you're well
Did you ever make it out of that town
Where nothing ever happened?

It's no secret
That the both of us are running out of time


The Queen of Tearful Adult Contemporary Power Ballads has returned to #SaveTheMusicIndustry as we know it. Whether you sip the Kool-Aid or not, Adele's vocal magnetism has struck again with her latest, "Hello", off her upcoming album, 25.

There's two reasons why I love this song in particular; one being it will probably keep Drake's "Hotline Bling" from being a (repeat, at least) #1 on Billboard's Hot 100 (because, really - we don't need that nonsense during Q4 Priority time, do we?). The other is #ALittleMorePersonal in that of all of the jams Adele has offered up to our greedy ears, "Hello" might resonate the most with yours truly.

It's really painfully honest.

Let's not discount Adele's meteoric rise to relevance in the upper echelons of the Mainstream Top 40. Part of Adele's story is she's the every-woman that we all can relate to, particularly thanks to the smash that was/is/will forever be "Someone Like You".

Yes, her vocals deserve high praise and her material wouldn't be as punchy if they were performed by a lesser talent but the bread-and-butter of what makes an Adele record unique is her ability to craft and deliver lyrical poetry that feels so utterly familiar, it feels like it could be written about your life.

Such is the case with "Hello" for me. While "Someone Like You" can leave you emotionally spent just listening to it, inspiring nostalgia of relationships past (for some), "Hello" really hits me where it hurts because it's doesn't have to relate back to that one special someone. It's a message of loneliness for an inner circle, crafted in times that have already gone by.

This is why Adele as an artist is, as the kids say, real AF. "Hello" to me speaks volumes of how loneliness can creep in on you when you're, say, away from your family and hometown/college friends for an extended time -- as I have been, living now in New York City for the better part of six years. They say distance can make the heart grow fonder but we don't like to mention how it can also inspire a feeling of "out of sight, out of mind".

It also speaks to how subjective feelings can be when bonds are stretched by distance. It's so easy to get caught up in the daily stresses of life -- everyone does this -- and in the world we live in now, despite being as digitally connected as we all are to each other, how well do we keep up with old friends? With family? It's so easy to 'like' a photo on Facebook of an acquaintance you worked with a few years ago and call it friendship but is it really?

While a song like "Someone Like You" will go down in history for its brooding lament of lost love, "Hello" has a much broader and more familiar ache woven into its lyrics. We only have one life and it's important to not just live but to live in the moment with our hearts and ears open.

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