Dear Demi Lovato,
Hey girl, I heard that one song of yours the other day, the one with the beat that goes bump ba dump dump, bump ba dump dump, bump ba dump dump. It’s the one with the artificially enhanced vocals and strategically-timed rhyming words and such. Obviously, you know the one I’m referring to, it is your song after all.
Anyway, I listened to it, quite intently after you started to repeat yourself. You kept asking something about confidence and what was wrong with it. Actually, you asked it about ten times; more than twenty-two times if you count the half-sentence stutter thing where you only said, “what’s wrong with being, what’s wrong with being” two times before you were able to get the whole question out.
I don’t mean for that to sound offensive, I know stutters can be challenging sometimes. In fact, I grew up watching Cindy Brady from The Brady Bunch struggle with a severe lisp, which is basically the same as a stutter, so I’m very familiar with the toils you’ve faced.
My empathies aside, I think I have an answer to your question, but it might not be the answer you want.
What’s wrong with being confident? Nothing.
However, if I’m inferring the lyrics from your song correctly, you’re not actually talking about confidence. You’re talking about sexual prowess, which is not synonymous with confidence. If that is correct, then you may need to change your tune a little, pun intended. Seriously though, all clever wordplay aside, kids and teenagers listen to your music and sexual prowess probably isn’t the best thing for them to be listening to.
Or I could be wrong, and I sincerely hope I am.
Being the expert amateur gourmet thinker that I am, I have a second theory about what your peppy song is really about. Still, there isn’t anything inherently wrong with confidence itself.
Perhaps your hit song is about you overcoming your stutter? Let me elaborate line-by-line:
Are you ready? Obviously, this is directed at the general public, asking if they’re ready to hear you speak out with a stutter.
It’s time for me to take it/I’m the boss right now/Not gonna fake it/Not when you go down/‘Cause this is my game/And you better come to play. Okay, I’m still not entirely convinced that this isn’t about sexual prowess, so we’ll move on.
I used to hold my freak back/Now I’m letting go/I make my own choice/Yeah I run this show/So leave the lights on/No, you can’t make me behave. I can only assume that this part is referring to those ancient Roman times when people with speech impediments were locked in cages for entertainment purposes and citizens passing by would throw coins into the cages to provoke them to talk. I’m proud of you for referencing a painful historical past into your song, that took a lot of courage and confidence.
So you say I’m complicated/That I must be out of my mind/But you’ve had me underrated/Rated rated. This part would be you referring to the wiring in your brain, right? Because people with speech impediments have complicated and different neuron, synapse, and other brain-wiry things than those who don’t have speech impediments? And because you’re constantly underrated for public speaking events? I get that, I’m picking up what you’re putting down.
It’s time to get the chains out/Is your tongue tied up?/‘Cause this is my ground/And I’m dangerous/And you can get me off/But it’s all about me tonight. Getting the chains out, having ground, being dangerous, and it all being about you tonight is obviously referring to the ancient Roman thing again and giving a speech in public. Both going against the grain of ancient Roman society and breaking the smooth-talking norm of our modern day public speaking society.
Demi, I was originally intending to write this to harp on you about irresponsibly singing an inappropriately themed song that kids and teenagers will excessively listen to which not only misguides them about the definitions of words, but encourages bad behavior pertaining to coitus because of the whole “kids and teenagers” age bracket thing. But after reading through your lyrics more intently and putting my own personal biases on it and molding it to mean whatever I want it to mean for myself because everything in society is relative, just like the concept of “truth,” I have decided that your toe-tapping ditty could very easily be about both domineering coitus behavior and overcoming that stutter, which just happens to fill a good portion of the song.
Props to you, Demi, for either being confident enough to sing about a painful historical past that you weren’t alive to experience or for being confident enough to sing about morally questionable things that probably shouldn’t be broadcasted on mainstream Top 40 radio.