About Song Beautiful by Christina Aguilera

“Beautiful” by Christina Aguilera was recorded in 2002 for her fourth studio album, Stripped. It was written and produced by Linda Perry. To me, this song tells a story about the struggle of loving yourself in today’s society. It shows the persona’s want to love his or herself, and in some lines their ability to do so, but also the negative side of it all. Before this song, Aguilera was mostly known for singing about boys and being wild, so the message of this song was definitely new for her and her audience. Some of her most popular previous songs are “Genie in a Bottle” (1999) and “Lady Marmalade” (2001), which both convey a much different message.

When this song was first released in 2002, self love wasn’t the most popular topic. Billboard’s Top 20 consisted of songs like “Complicated” by Avril Lavigne and “Dilemma” by Nelly. There were few songs that people could actually connect to, and “Beautiful” actually helped set the stage for more self love pop music, while encouraging young girls and women to find the beauty in themselves as well. It quickly became on of Aguilera’s most popular songs, I think solely because of the amount of people were able to relate to it and feel understood.

“Don’t look at me” is the intro and first line of the song. It sets the tone for the rest of the song, and implies that the persona is ashamed of how she looks. It shows that she’s worried this characteristic will cause others to think of her as an outcast, and that she’ll be denied the acceptance that everyone wants. As the music softly builds up, she sings “Every day is so wonderful, Then suddenly it’s hard to breathe. Now and then I get insecure from all the pain, I’m so ashamed” (Lines 2-5). The first line is important in understanding the song’s overall message, because it shows that the persona is not depressed, and that her days actually start out good. However, when this wears off, she is struck with the realization that life is not so easy and carefree. “Now and then I get insecure. From all the pain” represents that everybody feels insecure at times, some more than others. Although she isn’t depressed, she’s not satisfied with herself.

The next line is, “I’m so ashamed.” This line sums up what the persona has been saying the whole verse. She’s ashamed that she’s different, despite that’s what makes her unique and beautiful. “I am beautiful no matter what they say. Words can’t bring me down. I am beautiful in every single way. Yes, words can’t bring me down, oh no. So don’t you bring me down today” (Lines 6-10). Considering this is the chorus, it’s repeated multiple times throughout the song and is the main part of it that reveals the message. It contradicts the first verse by showing a sense of hope, and represents the persona saying that she is beautiful, flaws and all, regardless of what an outside source has to say.

The next verse says “To all your friends, you’re delirious. So consumed in all your doom. Trying hard to fill the emptiness. The pieces gone, left the puzzle undone. Is that the way it is?” (Lines 11-15). To me, the persona is suggesting that whoever he’s talking about feels misunderstood and lost. At some point in most people’s lives, they go through a time period that they feel alone and as if they’re gonna feel this way forever, and I think that’s the kind of situation this person’s in. After repeating the chorus, the next verse says “No matter what we do, No matter what we say, We’re the song inside the tune, Full of beautiful mistakes. And everywhere we go, The sun will always shine. The sun will always, always shine, and tomorrow, we might wake on the other side” (Lines 21-28). I think he’s talking about how each and every one of us make up the beauty in the world, despite our mistakes and flaws, and that we need to realise this and stop dwelling on what we are or aren’t. In the last line, where he talks about waking up on the other side, I think he’s referring to death and how the world doesn’t stop for anyone. There’s beauty in everyone but it’s our job to see and appreciate it while we’re still here; tomorrow isn’t promised.

The last part of the song is just the chorus, but with “we” instead of “I”, which is the persona’s way of connecting the message with others and stating that we’re all individually beautiful, despite what anyone else thinks or says. The overall meaning of “Beautiful” is that you are truly beautiful, from your looks to who you are as a whole, whether you fit into society’s norms or not.

As the song starts out, the audience most likely assumes that it will be about depression or shame. However, once you keep listening to the lyrics you notice that the meaning of the song is much deeper than shame and actually has an opposite message. When the audience hears the title of the song they could also make the assumption that the song is about beauty and the images of celebrities, but it’s about seeing the beauty in ourselves and everyone else. We all have inner beauty that defines us as individuals, and we all express it in different ways. To me, the message that the persona was trying to give through this song was just to look for the beauty in yourself and around you.

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About Song Beautiful by Christina Aguilera. (2022, Sep 30). Retrieved from https://graduateway.com/about-beautiful-by-christina-aguilera/