I have a complicated relationship with empowerment songs, songs with featured artists, and soaring choruses since they can be trite, distracting, and kill the momentum, respectively. However, Taeyeon’s “I” (featuring Verbal Jint) dodges those potential pitfalls to my satisfaction to earn its 82+ million views.
Taeyeon’s voice is great (especially on the chorus), and Verbal Jint’s warning/encouragement verses set up the rest of the song nicely, but it’s the rest of the lyrics that I love. They capture a vulnerable sort of optimism that makes me wish I had the courage to–well, maybe not walk out of my job and drive to the coast in a stolen car to meet up with the pastoral version of my soul–but to take risks for my dreams.
(Yes, I’m aware of how cheesy that sounds.)
Forgotten dream, I draw it again in my heart
Collect all of the times I withdrew and swallow it
Small memories wake me up one by one
It opens me up, as if it’ll fill the whole world (x)
The MV complements the song perfectly, as the story it tells is there to back up the lyrics instead of being distracting. There are a couple instrumental stretches to further the “story”
or to sell cars, but they come with great scenery and don’t last long.
The song and the MV leave me hopeful for this lady. I don’t know what the future’s got in store for her, but I’m pretty sure she’ll figure it out.
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