Despite the summer, and its heat, being on the rise, broken hearts continues to be this summer's biggest downfall. Although, thankfully, these broken hearts are not generic. They don't reside in one broken relationship after the other. Instead, these heartbreaks show up in various forms, from various captors. Some of the pain comes from falling out of love with another, others come from falling out of love with oneself. Regardless, it is safe to say that a few of these broken hearts are no longer accompanied by hurt feelings.
Instead, the artists of this week let you know that their hearts are broken, but they are more than happy to move on. Some of them acknowledge being foolish and creating their own issues ("Foolish Hearts"), others place the blame at the feet of the person who deserves it ("Don't Blame It on Love"). Either way, the music of this week shows what happens when one decides to push their heartache aside, whether romantic or familial, and chooses themselves and their peace overall.
1."Tragic" - Jazmine Sullivan
The only thing tragic about Jazmine Sullivan's recent single, is the very notion that it's not bigger than it is. Coming off the high of her January album, Heaux Tales, Jazmine Sullivan is back to release her newest single "Tragic." The song begins with the voice of Maxine Waters as she explains why she is infamously reclaiming her time. Similar to Waters, Sullivan believes that her time was wasted on a man who didn't bother to try. Refusing to waste her time any longer, Sullivan reclaims what is left of her time and chooses to spend it on someone worth it.
With powerhouse vocals, smooth and alluring melodies, and fierce lyrics, Jazmine is demanding in what she wants and what she refuses to accept. Long gone are the days where she allows herself to be put second. Long gone are the days where she continues to ride with someone who is willing to give her up so easily. In the same way Sullivan acknowledges her man and his behavior had been tragic, she acknowledges that allowing it to get this far in the first place, was as well.
2."I Like Dat" - T-Pain & Kehlani
When I first listened to this single, I must admit that I was a little disappointed to hear T-Pain singing in his signature auto-tuned tone. With revealing his true vocal prowess a couple of years ago, I had hoped that we would be welcomed into a new age of T-Pain music. Granted, we can't fault him, because it has worked in the past. Though, I am unsure what that will mean for his music in the future. In the "I Like Dat" single, T-Pain and Kehlani sing about a woman who is hard-working and manages to get what she needs without complaint. The song is good, catchy even, as it is reminiscent of his older 2000 hits. The nostalgic feel of the song will offer some sense of solace and the message behind the song will do just the same. "I Like Dat" will most likely not be the biggest hit of the summer, but it is a nice bop to add to your pre-game playlist, before hitting the club.
3."Home" - Jorja Smith
From the EP Be Right Back, comes Jorja Smith's fourth single, "Home." In "Home," Smith talks about one of the greatest struggles one can have in a relationship: being unfulfilled. Although, this relationship ends mournfully, it is not like the breakup songs that have been released earlier this summer. Instead, the song portrays a relationship being almost perfect, the only thing wrong is that neither party is getting what they truly want out of the relationship. Therefore, the relationship has run its course. If anything, the only thing creating pain for the couple, at this point, is their inability to let one another go. For fear of uncertainty, they hold onto one another despite knowing that the relationship has overstayed its welcome. Eventually, they go their separate ways, but not without appreciating the things that made them feel at home.
4."I Want" - ENNY
She wants lets stress and she wants more money. Releasing her newest single, "I Want" from the upcoming album, Under Twenty Five, ENNY knows exactly what she wants and how she wants it. Meanwhile, the person she is talking to…not so much. Which is fine, because according to ENNY, she has paved the way for them to figure it out in their own time, at their own pace. After all, the hardest decision to make is deciding to make a decision at all. With this newest single, ENNY vibes on with a 90s flow as she talks about the struggles of being in her 20s and having multiple identities and expectations to live up to.
5."Lipstick" - WILLOW
With every single, WILLOW reaffirms my belief that Black women belong in the alternative/indie rock genre. If not all Black women, then this Black woman, especially. Willow Smith returns with her second single of the summer, "Lipstick," for her upcoming debut rock album, Lately I Feel Everything. Reminiscent of the early 2000's pop-punk/alternative rock, "Lipstick" is a guitar-fueled track about the burdens of keeping everything inside and suffering as a result. Though, she refuses to suffer any longer under the fear of scrutiny.
In a recent interview, WILLOW claims, "I realized that it's not my movie that can't sing this kind of music. I was afraid to sing this kind of music because I wasn't sure what people would think." Now, no longer afraid of the opinions of others, WILLOW shows that 11 years later after her debut single "Whip My Hair," rock is where she has always belonged.
6."Corso" - Tyler, the Creator
Over the last few years, it has been truly a gift to watch the growth of Tyler, the Creator's artistry. From his more aggressive and misunderstood behaviors in Goblin and Wolf, to his more turned down, self-reflection in Flower Boy and Igor, Tyler, the Creator has returned with yet another album (Call Me If You Get Lost) and single, "Corso." In "Corso," Tyler brags about his success. Despite the expectations of others, he manages to live in a mansion and desires to surpass the milestone of being a millionaire, in hopes of becoming a billionaire. Yet, at this moment, he is unhappy and chooses to spend the millions he does have to "fill voids up."
7."Don't Blame It On Love" - Yuna ft. Pink Sweats
In the newest single, "Don't Blame It On Love," Yuna challenges her partner to take what many are afraid to: accountability. After giving her all in her relationship, she wonders why she is left to drown while her lover remains above water. Instead of blaming their relationship on love, or saying their relationship is a consequence of love, Yuna tells him to take responsibility for the demise of their relationship. Pink Sweats naturally agrees with this assessment. Seeming to address a relationship of his own, Pink Sweats talks about how his partner seems to come short despite the endless chances given, as well. The constant gaslighting, unreliability, and lack of responsibility has left them feeling insecure, which has resulted in their withdrawal from the relationship. They wise enough to know that if love feels like this, then it isn't love at all.
8."Headshots" - Isaiah Rashad
When asked about his latest single "Headshots" Isaiah Rashad states that the song can be taken two ways. Either you can interpret the song being about someone dying that you cared about, or dying yourself. Nevertheless, his newest single puts things in perspective about the state of the African-American community. He is tired of the violence, the alcohol consumption, and the glorifying of the two. Though, this does not mean that he is not about having a good time, he just believes that in doing so, you have to be conscious of what you're willing to sacrifice. He has experience a lot within his life and this song shows that from those experiences he has only become wiser. Though, the song could also be interpreted as a means to heal, with him stating that "the last couple of years I have been feeling dead," and now he has the chance to feel alive, again. All the while living the life he has always wanted and aspired to.
9."Hourglass" - Mary J. Blige
From Amazon's Original Documentary, Mary J. Blige's My Life, comes her newest single "Hourglass." A hourglass is used to often symbolize how fleeting human existence can truly be. The sand that trickles down into the lower glass, represents the time that has been used and when it resides, it represents the memories that are left. The same can be said for Mary J. Blige's newest single. In the song, she reflects on the time spent in her life and in the lives of others. She questions whether they are satisfied with the time that has already been spent and what they will choose to do with the time that they have left.
Like most of Mary J. Blige's songs, she talks about the things that have made her the woman she is today. Though, she refuses to allow those moment, whether happy or sad, to dictate her future. If today was her last day, she doesn't want to spend it dwelling on what she has or hasn't done, instead, she is going to take the present for what it is, and worry about the hourglass when her time is up.
10."Foolish Heart" - Alicia Keys
To celebrate the Songs in Minor 20th anniversary, Alicia Keys has released her newest, yet oldest, single "Foolish Heart." Noted as the first song Keys has ever recorded, "Foolish Heart," debuts for the first time, twenty years later. As a lovely piano ballad, Keys talks about loving someone who doesn't feel the same. Whether this person is incapable of feeling the same way or just fell out of love down the road, she knows about what happens when you're the only one investing in your relationship. Despite the song being written two decades ago, the message it provides still rings true; especially in the age of situationships over relationships.
Following your heart has always been advised, but when your head is saying that your heart shouldn't be trusted, Alicia Keys wants you to know that it is OK if you leave your foolish heart behind. After all, drowning out what you know is right for what you hope is right, will only lead to pain.
Need some more music recommendations? Here are other songs out this week:
11."Why Don't You Touch Me: Part 2" - Leon Bridges
12."Vaccine" - Logic
13."Hit Bout It" (Remix) - Lil Eazzyy
14."Dancing With My Daddy" - Mila J ft. OG Dr Chill
15."Red Light Green Light" - DaBaby
16."Having Our Way" - Migos ft. Drake
17."Drugs N Hella Melodies" - Don Toliver ft. Kali Uchis
18."Working" - Khalid & Tate McRae
19."Holiday" - KSI
20."Wasting Time" - Brent Faiyaz ft. Drake
21."I'm Not Okay, But I Know I'm Going To Be" - Raleigh Ritchie
22."I Believed It" - dvsn & Ty Dolla $ign, Mac Miller
23."You Right" - Doja Cat, The Weeknd
24."You For Me" - Sigala & Rita Ora
25."Slutty" - Desiigner
26."Truffles" - Mike Jenkins
27."Betty Bussit" - Big Freedia ft. Soaky Siren & Tank and The Bangas
28."Patience" - Wesley Jospeh ft. Jorja Smith
29."Higher" - Tems
30."Lose My Mind" - Anthony Ramos
Featured image via Giphy