As a songwriter, Maddie Carpenter has the innate ability to dive into headspaces and explore situations she’s never been in, and “You” is a stellar example of her talents. The track, out July 8, is a devastating bedroom-pop song which seeks to unravel the complicated emotions which rise to the surface when a longstanding romantic relationship comes to an end.
“As much as I try to hold my younger self with love, as her experiences were much different than mine are now, I cringe at some of the naivety of my writing. ‘You,’ is different though,” Carpenter explains. “It has always stuck out as true through the years. I love singing it, performing it, and listening to it grow and change in small ways over time.”
Written in her childhood bedroom at the age of 17, the track is undeniably mature in the way that Carpenter is able to draw out a sense of poignant longing not just with her melodious coo but most brilliantly, with her words. Tinged with melancholy, Carpenter sings, “wash these trembling hands and turn your gray skies blue. I don’t know anymore what I should and should not do. You say, ‘take all that I have and I will wrap you in my arms.’ I was fooled by the greatness of everything you are. Thought it was you.”
There is something undeniably effortless about “You” as Carpenter taps into her artistry and captures a depth of emotion which isn’t easy to articulate. “At the point in my life that I wrote ‘You’ several of my closest friend’s parents were going through divorces or separations. This song was kind of my way of understanding the unraveling of a long-term relationship, or what I imagined it felt like,” she says.
Despite never having experienced a meaningful romantic relationship at the time, Carpenter skillfully explores what it’s like to reflect on love lost and make room for an uncertain future without the comforts of a former partner. “As much as it is a sad song, I find it hopeful as it makes space for a new start and finding what you truly want for yourself or from a potential partner.”
Maddie Carpenter is a singer and songwriter from the Bay Area. She started her vocal journey as a 4-year-old singing whatever musical she was obsessed with at that moment (probably Annie or Grease). She is inspired by and writes pop/americana music, but she is always willing to grow and evolve her style!