I'm Really Glad I Have a Friend Like Betty Who

Hello, everyone. I sold a short story, for actual money, and it's going to be published in a book that's coming out in August. The book is called Lost Films and you can pre-order it here and I'll probably figure out how to make a page you can go to on this blog that has a list of my publications. I also recently started working at a job that isn't retail and is something I actually want to do at all. So things have been going well for me recently. Let's talk about Betty Who.

Betty Who is an Australian pop singer who I first heard while working at Bloomingdale's, the most retail of all the retail jobs I've worked. Most of the time it's a curse to listen to the music they play in the store where you work forty (or more) hours a week, so when a song I didn't hate came on I tried to make the most of it. And Betty Who's songs kinda made me want to dance, so I memorized a lyric or two and looked her up. I thought she might have some fun catchy songs about being in love or whatever those songs are talking about when they say they need you tonight or want a taste of you. What a joy it was to discover that she was actually a bold proclaimer of the sadness that lies at the heart of all pop love songs, singing lines like "I love it when you're lonely; that's when we feel the same" in a head voice sweet and ephemeral as ice cream melting in summer. The thesis statement of her album Take Me When You Go, the one from which they played the songs I heard at Bloomingdale's, is "if you've got a broken heart, then you're just like me." Well, I did, and so I've been a fan of Betty Who's work ever since.

All of this is to say that she has a new EP out now called Betty, Pt. 1 and it's her first release since she left her major label and went indie (which, does that mean she's not a pop artist? what the heck does it mean to be a pop artist?) and it's so good and I just feel so happy for her. "Ignore Me" is the best love-song-that's-actually-about-the-artist's-relationship-with-her-label-and-her-own-art since Sara Bareilles destroyed 2007 with "Love Song," "Taste" is pure gleeful nihilism, and I listened to "Friend Like Me" on the way to my first day at my new job this morning and got more emotional than I care to admit, because it's about someone actually liking you, and it reminds you that it's okay to be happy. We could all use a friend like that sometimes. I often feel like Betty Who's songs are my secret friend because I don't know anyone else who knows her work. But I want them to be everyone else's secret friend too.


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