Once upon a time, I fell in love with Adele. I don’t exactly remember which song I first heard, but I remember listening through “19” and falling in love with the songs and her powerful voice. When “21” came out, I fell in love with her even more, and that’s when the love affair started. Adele is a common feature on my personal and clinic playlists. She is a staple on my karaoke song list and although I can never do an impressive rendition, I take it on with much courage.
Really Listening to Adele
I have been listening to and singing Adele’s songs for awhile now, but last year I realized I haven’t really “read” her lyrics, so one night I spent a few hours going through all her songs again. I went through 19 and 21 to devour all of Adele’s drama and it was heavy. Adele’s songs are sad… and when I say “sad” I don’t even mean boo-hoo… I mean sad let-me-get-a-knife-so-I-can-slit-my-wrist, sad. Even her love songs (songs that are meant to express love) are all one way and never reciprocated. She often cries and pleads to be loved. She pathetically wishes, but with no force, because that would not be Adele-like. She does not demand love, she painstakingly dreams it is even possible and wouldn’t mind if it isn’t, because at the end of the day she is all about writing songs and singing them dramatically.
In Chasing Pavements, she sings, “Should I give up or should I just keep chasing pavements, even if it leads nowhere?” She feebly asks and probably hopes to get a positive response. But even before she is replied to, she follows up with, “Or would it be a waste, even if I knew my place? Should I leave it there?” Already giving up and succumbing to defeat because almost always, she feels she doesn’t deserve to be loved. That love for her, is only thought and dreamt of.
But does Adele deserve it? Of course she does because anyone who falls in love with someone who can write the way she does, will be in luck because she will envelop you not only with her voice but her love. Adele will do everything it takes and she says it clearly (and again, pathetically) in Make You Feel My Love, “I’d go hungry, I’d go black and blue. I’d go crawling down the avenue. No there’s nothing that I wouldn’t do… to make you feel my love.”. Because that is just how Adele is when she is in love, she’ll go Crazy For You, “Tell me to run and I’ll race. If you want me gone, I’ll leave. Just hold me closer, baby. And make me crazy for you. Crazy for you.” And it won’t be hot and steamy like Madonna’s version, it will be sullen and one-way.
It goes on and on, I am telling you. From one song to the other, it continues to depress and like weapons of mass destruction, Adele’s songs should be handled with care. If you are weak and on the brink, you have to stay away because it may be the last push you need. Adele’s songs are like ticking time bombs, unless you listen to the right one. Sometimes she is strong and she has the power to put her foot down, albeit in the most dramatic fashion, but with strength nonetheless. In Turning Tables, she cries: “Next time I’ll be braver. I’ll be my own savior. Standing on my own two feet,” and that happens–when one gets hurt so bad, you develop tough skin and you stand strong enough to defend yourself. She continues: “I won’t let you close enough to hurt me. No I wont rescue you to just desert me. I can’t give you the heart you think you gave me. It’s time to say goodbye, to turning tables”. Ultimately, one finds the right footing to stand up and survive, even Adele (and the Adele’s of this world).
Adele’s New Album
When Hello came out, I was so excited to hear it, and after my previous experiment I proceeded to focus on the lyrics and found that it was still on the same theme. It had the same desperate yearning and hopeful pleading: “Hello, it’s me. I was wondering if after all these years you’d like to meet. To go over everything. They say time’s supposed to heal ya, but I ain’t done much healing.” And then the second song came out. When We Were Young, follows the same suit: “And a part of me keeps holding on just in case it hasn’t gone. I guess I still care. Do you still care?” Oh my gosh, Adele! What is wrong with you?
One time I was speaking to someone about poetry and while talking about the depth of pain on paper, he mentioned, “Oh but this doesn’t have enough Adele pain” and that made me laugh because I was drafting this post already. Adele pain–interesting thing. I want to meet Adele and have a lengthy conversation with her to talk about her pain. Actually, I think someone needs to talk to Adele because I’m afraid she is in trouble. Three albums of almost suicidal wailing, I think she needs someone to talk to, a best friend, I want to be that person. I want to be Adele’s best friend. Hahaha!
Now, please know that I’m just just kidding and playing with Adele. At least from what online sources reveal, she is happily married and is a doting mother. She is also a feminist and with her stand about her weight, is in no way insecure or needy of attention. Most of the songs in 19, she wrote at that age, and maybe she had lots of pain and angst then. 21, we all know, is a breakup album, so we encountered songs like Someone Like You and Rumour Has It. 25, she reveals, is a makeup album and it’s basically finding out who she’s become after–after what? I don’t know, I’ll ask her that when I talk to her.
Anyway, let me leave you with some Adele emotion (because what better way to close this, but with more Adele pain):
I’m giving you up
I’ve forgiven it all
You set me free
Send my love to your new lover
Treat her better
We gotta let go of all our ghosts
We both know we ain’t kids no more
Wisdom. Truth. Pain. In plain words. No fluff. That’s Adele and that song was from 25: Send My Love (To Your New Lover).