After a six-year music hiatus, we finally have new Adele content. If you would have told me that I’d have to wait until I’m a freshman in college to listen to a new Adele song I would’ve cried, yet here we are and I could not be more excited. With her fourth studio album, 30, releasing next month (!!!!), Adele has graced us with a new single to kick off the fall season.
“Easy On Me” is the perfect song filled with lilting melodies and powerful verses. Her strong voice still rings throughout this entire song so that we as listeners feel the emotion behind her 2019 divorce in full force. Adele continues to take us on this journey of life, love, and loss, and she does so effortlessly.
The song can be interpreted in many ways, but overall the aforementioned song is an apology to her son, Angelo. Through the lyrics, you can hear how much she cares for her son and how sorry she is that she had to put Angelo through this (“Go easy on me, baby”). Adele goes on to sing about how she tried to rekindle the relationship with her husband and hold on to what had been lost (“I know there is hope in these waters, but I can’t bring myself to swim”). Divorce isn’t easy for anyone – Adele understands this and realizes how this separation from her husband is not only affecting her, but the person she cares for most. Divorce is no one’s fault, but Adele feels as though it is. She feels like it is a mother’s responsibility to protect their child from anything that could hurt them and she failed to protect Angelo from this. She blames her childlike innocence and inexperience on the short-lived relationship, begging for Angelo to “go easy on” her, but some things even Adele can’t fix on her own. She tried, and she wants her son to understand that she is still experiencing life and learning things that no one took the time to teach her while rising into fame and navigating her stardom. As an avid Adele stan, I can only hope that her 9-year-old son looks at the entire situation from her perspective and recognizes the weight that mothers have to carry, and sympathizes with her. Angelo and Adele deserve nothing but the best and I hope that as a result of these circumstances their mother-son relationship can become stronger than ever.
The theme of the second verse is feeling stuck and feeling like there is no way to please everyone. Adele sings about how there is “no room for things to change” and how she sees no light at the end of the tunnel. She realizes that the only way that things can hopefully get better, is if she starts to put herself and her needs first. She has been trying to cater to her son and ex-husband’s needs for so long that she put her own needs on the back burner which is ultimately more harmful to her mental health. Although she and her ex-husband have both fought for their
marriage, they recognize how unsalvageable it is and she decides it is now time to take care of her. It is almost always a given that when you become a mother you are supposed to forget who you were before and take on the role of being someone else’s permanent caretaker. You are no longer your own and you will always be this person’s guardian. So you can imagine how defeated Adele feels when she comes to the realization that the only way she can save them, is if she saves herself first. Although I am not married (and do not want to be for a VERY long time), this portion of the song is so inspiring and causes me to look at my own life a little differently. Who am I destroying myself for? When do I need to start putting myself first in order to see myself grow into the person that I need to be? This song poses many deep and thought-provoking questions that continue to plague my mind even 5 days after the song has dropped.
The song starts somber with Adele realizing there is nothing in her relationship that is benefitting her anymore and ends with her explaining to her son that she has done everything in her power to make this work for him, only for it to eventually fall apart. We as listeners navigate this story with Adele and learn how complicated it is to make everyone happy all of the time and sometimes all we can do is ask for forgiveness. I feel honored that Adele has allowed us to see a deeper side to her marriage and her feelings behind it. It gives us a better understanding of what she has been through in the past 6 years and allows us to learn more about her through song.
I have been crying to Adele since I was 6 years old listening to “Chasing Pavements” and now I can do the same as an 18-year-old because that is just how timeless her songs are. Adele kicking off Sad Girl Fall just seems so right to me. It’s like we’ve gone through this long drought and now, here we are, about to receive the best album of 2021.
New Mitski, Taylor Swift, and now we can add the queen Adele to the list. I’m so glad she has decided to share her story with us and cannot see where the rest of her album takes us.
Stream “Easy On Me” by Adele everywhere!