Posted by Brittany Barth on 11/12 at 06:23 PM
If you’re looking for a singer with powerhouse vocals, a songwriter who has mastered the ability to capture the most heartfelt of lyrics, and an album that is utterly poignant, your search ends here.
The twenty-five-year-old R&B singer released her debut album, Our Version of Events, in the February of 2012, which established exactly who Sandé is as a musician. This album introduces audiences to a singer with soul, an artist willing to address the most intimate of subjects and then confront them. This album is more than an album: it is a story, a journey, a glimpse into Sandé’s personal life. Our Version of Events is an album that exposes her heart.
The album focuses on the subject of love, the feeling of being in it, the feeling of losing it. She also discusses being in relationships, those that are successful, and those that fail. Through her songs, she presents scenarios audiences can connect with and therefore appreciate.
“Suitcase” the most heart-wrenching song to be found on the album, tells the story of a woman whose lover is leaving her with no explanation: “My baby’s got a suitcase. He’s telling me it’s too late. But don’t nobody, please don’t ask me why. ‘Cause all I did was love him, but I can’t stop him walking. My baby’s got a suitcase, but please don’t ask me why.” These lyrics express to the listener the confusion, the shock, the desperation she feels watching her lover leave her unexpectedly.
“Suitcase” is a song made up of questions: “Why is this happening to me?, “What did I do wrong?”, “Can you please talk to me?” These questions are ones that are never answered. The audience, just like the song’s victim, are left to speculate, to wonder, to beg for answers we will never receive. It is a kind of despair that audiences can empathize with.
The eighth track on the album, entitled “Maybe”, is another song that poses questions: “Can we make this work?” “Is there still love between us?” This song, however, presents possible solutions to these questions. “Maybe you could stay a bit longer, or I could try a bit harder. We could make it work. But maybe we should stop pretending…maybe it’s time to go.” There are some relationships that force us to make certain decisions. Some relationships force us to ask ourselves, and the ones who we love, “Is what we have worth fighting for or should we go our separate ways?” “Maybe” is a song about these kind of decisions. It is a song that forces us to recognize that making the right choices in matters of love is never easy and never will be.
Songs such as “Clown” and “Daddy (feat. Naughty Boy)” are other tracks on the album that reveal the troubling issues we face in love. But while Sandé addresses the most painful aspects of love and relationships, she exposes the lighter side of them as well. “Where I Sleep” expresses the sense of safety, of security, of comfort we feel because of our loved one. It is a song that reminds us that even when we feel as though our world has become chaotic, even when we feel hopeless, the love of another provides relief.
“Breaking The Law” is a song about a woman who emphasizes the lengths she would go to for the person she loves, that she would do anything for him, that she will always be a constant in his life. It allows audiences to reflect on what they would do for the ones that they love, and how much their significant other means to them. Similar tracks include “Lifetime” and “Next To Me”, which share the same sense of elation we experience from falling and being in love.
Through Our Version of Events, Emeli Sandé has proven that she has pure talent. She has proven that she is an artist who provides substance on her album. She has proven to audiences that she is not afraid to expose herself, to be vulnerable, and that her story is only beginning.
Author: Brittany Barth
Bio: My name is Brittany Barth, an English major currently in my senior year at Penn State. I am a lover of food, John Mayer, all things nautical and cats. It has always been a dream of mine to be the lead singer of a (successful) band. After graduation, my goal is to become a Young Adult fiction novelist, but I would love to be an advice columnist prior to that. I am excited about graduation and what the future holds for me!
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