24-year-old American singer-songwriter Claire Cottrill, famously known as Clairo, is growing and maturing in the scrutinizing eyes of the public. From being the pretty girl to becoming the ‘definitive Gen Z success story.’
Foremost reputed as a rising powerhouse in the 2017 lo-fi bedroom pop alternative music scene with her hits “Pretty Girl” and “4ever.” Clairo built a strong fanbase that she brought through her journey. In hindsight, she had the starting career of someone who would choose the safe route to being a pop star. However, a few years passed and her first two full-length album releases tell us otherwise.
It hurts nicely
For her 2019 studio album, Immunity, Clairo brought about confessional lyrics on complicated relationships and personal experiences. It is mixed with soft rock influences visible on her single “Bags,” and album track ‘Feel Something.” But what changed and indicated her growth the most is her stronger songwriting, particularly in “Alewife.” Her personal feelings put into words bridged her closer to her listeners.
Relatively, it would be worth mentioning that in the year before releasing her debut album, Clairo came out as bisexual. It then partially influenced her lyrics for this album like in the song “Sofia” where she sings “I think we could do it if we tried. If only to say you’re mine. Sofia, know that you and I, Shouldn’t feel like a crime.”
Two years after, Clairo then released her critically acclaimed and fan-awaited second album, Sling. It very much strays away from the sound of most if not all her pre-existing records. With notable inspirations, both lyrically and melodically, from iconic figures Joni Mitchell, Carole King, and Fleetwood Mac. She explored more mature subjects with mostly stripped-back but somehow upbeat sounds and accompaniments.
Singing the lyrics “Why do I tell you how I feel when you’re just looking down the blouse?” Clairo narrates her experiences of being sexualized by a peer on her lead single “Blouse.” But what hits closer to home are her songs on growth and adulthood with “Amoeba” and “Wade.” With her most cutting and gutting highly relatable lines from the former;
Pulling back, I tried to find
The point of wasting precious time
I sip and toast to normalcy
A fool’s way into jealousy
I mock and imitate goodbyes
When I know that I can’t deny
That I’ll be here forever while
I show up to the party just to leave
Only a few years into her career, Clairo proved and continues to show that her voice is worth listening to. From being a naïve pretty girl to someone who contemplates motherhood, her journey tells an interesting and comforting growth. This is something that I want to relate to. And in actuality, Clairo’s music does more than comfort, it secures companionship and a feeling of being heard and seen.
Salihha is a typical Virgo. She finds interest in true crime stories, Korean wave, thrift shopping, and makeup; these stuff fuels her desire to write. There’s nothing she loves more than her dogs and Harry Styles.