Ariana Grande Bids a Bittersweet Farewell to Her Last Relationship and Welcomes New Beginnings on “Bye”

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Ariana Grande is officially back with all-new music, and the petite pop star is providing us with bops all around. Her seventh studio album Eternal Sunshine pulls inspiration from the 2004 Jim Carrey film of the same name and touches on topics from navigating new relationships to letting go of past connections.

In conversation with Apple Music’s Zane Lowe, Ari revealed that highlighting both the positive and negative aspects of moving on from a relationship was a “tricky balance” while working on the album. “That was a tricky balance for me because I definitely had some sessions where I was writing more emotionally and reactively but that’s also very human so I didn’t want to erase all of it,” she explained. One of the tracks that dives into the end of a major relationship (aka her marriage with Dalton Gomez)? That’d be “Bye,” and we’ve already dissected the lyrics so you can follow along with the lore that likely inspired Ari’s creative process.

Lyrics provided by Genius

[Intro]

Bye-bye

Boy, bye, hmm

Hmm

Bye-bye

Boy, bye

It’s over, it’s over, oh yeah

[Verse 1]

This ain’t the first time I’ve been hostage to these tears

I can’t believe I’m finally movin’ through my fears

At least, I know how hard we tried, both you and me

Didn’t we? Didn’t we?

Right off the bat, Ariana juxtaposes her 2018 hit, “No Tears Left to Cry” by claiming she’s “been hostage” to the tears in question. She acknowledges that she and her ex (in this case, that’d be Dalton Gomez) tried everything they could to make their relationship work for as long as it did.


[Pre-Chorus]

So I grab my stuff

Courtney just pulled up in the driveway

It’s time

In the pre-chorus, Ari packs her stuff and officially exits the relationship with the help of a friend. If you’re a casual Ari fan listening like, who the hell is Courtney?, allow me to explain. Longtime fans know that Ariana’s likely referring to one of her best friends, Courtney Chipolone. She’s made appearances in Ari’s music videos like “Thank U, Next” and “7 Rings,” and ofc, she’s one of the recipients of the singer’s 7 rings alongside Victoria Monét. Iconique. 🤌

[Chorus]

Bye-bye

Boy, bye

Bye-bye

It’s over, it’s over, oh yeah

Bye-bye

I’m takin’ what’s mine, yeah

Bye-bye

It’s over, it’s over, oh yeah

[Verse 2]

You know? I’m stronger than I think

Usually, I’d join you on the floor, but this dance ain’t for me

Boy, just turn the music up

Maybe, someday we’ll look back with love

Didn’t think you’d lose me

Now it’s just too late to choose me

In the second verse, Ari uses a metaphor of singing and dancing to depict the stage of her relationship. While she’s already moved on, her partner seems to be making attempts to keep her around. She claims it’s “too late” to choose her.

[Pre-Chorus]

[Chorus]

[Bridge]

Now it’s certainly bittersweet

This hook feels too hard to sing

But it’s better than repeat (Than repeat, than repeat, than repeat)

Ooh

She continues using that musical symbolism from the second verse on the bridge. Translation: “This hook feels too hard to sing / But it’s better than repeat” = “Walking away from this relationship isn’t easy / But it’s better than staying and repeating this unhealthy cycle.”

[Chorus]

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