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A Carly Rae Jepsen Australian tour is long overdue, so you know we’re counting down the days until she lands on our shores this December.
If we rewind all the way back to 2012, you’ll find the highest-selling single of that year was ‘Call Me Maybe’ – the breakout single for the Canadian singer-songwriter and a track that will feature pretty highly on many end-of-the-decade rundowns when this year draws to a close.
But Carly Rae Jepsen is so much more than just what’s packaged in the single’s three-minutes, and in the seven years since she has gone on to release three incredible pop records, flexing her prowess as both a songwriter and a performer in the process. We could put together a playlist of her best songs and be done with it, but there is something truly magical about the Carly Rae Jepsen catalogue that calls for a deeper look.
While Jepsen often works with the same hit songwriters as other pop superstars like Solange, Sia, Kelly Clarkson and Taylor Swift, she’s also a prolific songwriter, co-writing an incredible 200 songs for her latest album Dedicated – of which just 13 made the cut.
So we’re opening up her songbook and diving straight for the lyrics, because if MSN Messenger was still a thing, we know you’d be quoting these lyrics for days.
“Before you came into my life, I missed you so bad”
Where else to start but the single that put Carly Rae Jepsen front and centre in our minds and in our hearts?! There are so many hooks we could pick from this tune, every line is a catchy quotable masterpiece, but we’ve skipped right to the end of the song for our number one. Maybe it’s a little bit cheesy, but the line perfectly encapsulates what it feels like to be young and in love and we are here for it.
“I wanna cut through the clouds, break the ceiling, I wanna dance on the roof, you and me alone”
It’s one of Jepsen’s most popular songs, but ‘Cut To The Feeling’ almost didn’t make it into the world at all. It was part of the hundreds of songs written for Jepsen’s third studio album Emotion but Jepsen decided to cut it because she thought it was too theatrical. Then the opportunity came along for her to write a song for French-Canadian animated film Leap! and she already had the perfect tune handy. Alongside its thunderous drums and huge chorus, it also features some beautiful loved-up imagery.
“You don’t want my love, if you don’t care about me I’ll just dance for myself”
We’re so used to break up and unrequited love songs that make us feel even worse about ourselves, either by trying to find ways to make the other person fall in love with you or lamenting on the reasons why you’re not good enough. But not Jepsen, no way. ‘Party For One’ is the ultimate heartbreak anthem. In all it’s ’80s synth-pop glory she turns vulnerability into power, penning the ultimate self-love singalong in the process.
“Late night watching television but how’d we get in this position? It’s way too soon, I know this isn’t love but I need to tell you something”
Sometimes simple is exactly what we need – leave the metaphors and hyperboles for someone else and get straight to the point. That’s exactly what Carly Rae Jepsen does on ‘I Really Like You’. It’s the perfect 3 and a half minute summary of exactly what it feels like to be falling for someone. You’re in their space, you don’t want to screw it up by being too forward, but you also want to tell them how fabulous you think they are – Carly, we can relate.
“Up in the clouds, high as a kite, over the city. We never sleep, we never try, when you are with me….I wanna stay here with you.”
If you weren’t already familiar with Carly Rae’s catalogue, through this deep dive we hope it’s clear just how great she is at expressing the simplest, sweetest moments of falling for and being in love with someone. On ‘Run Away With Me’ we fine Jepsen at the point in the falling process where lust leads you to call in sick at work, ignore all your friends, and turn your phone off to shut out the outside world for a few days. ‘Run Away With Me’ was the song that truly welcomed the Emotion era (the album that TIME Magazine just named as one of the best of the decade), trading guilty pleasure bubblegum pop for this saxophone-led groover.
“Waking up next to you every morning, how did we get this far? It came without a warning”
Swirling synths and an infectious drum pattern lead into another beautifully euphoric Jepsen-penned chorus, and right from that opening line Jepsen proves that no one is quite as good as she is when it comes to waxing lyrical about the fairy tale feeling of blossoming romance. She really is a true pop darling!
Carly Rae Jepsen will bring her catalogue of loved up bangers to Forum Melbourne on Monday 2 December, and she’ll be supported by local rising star Starley. Last tickets are on sale now via Ticketmaster.com.au.