Song of the Day #3,433: ‘American Teen’ – Khalid

I haven’t done a week of ‘What the Kids are Listening To’ songs in awhile, largely because I’m so unimpressed with what passes for hit music these days. ‘Bodak Yellow,’ seriously?

But I thought this would be a good time to dedicate a week to songs that my actual kids are listening to, specifically my 15-year-old daughter Sophia.

Sophia likes her share of music I find horrible (again, ‘Bodak Yellow,’ anyone?) but she has introduced me to a number of songs I quite enjoy. This week I’ll highlight five of them.

First up is Khalid, the 19-year-old R&B singer-songwriter who hails most recently from El Paso but spent large portions of his childhood as an Army brat in Georgia, Kentucky, New York and Germany.

Khalid’s debut album, American Teen, was released in March of this year and went platinum just last month. Khalid has an infectiously upbeat personality that shines through in his songs, which chronicle life as (you guessed it) an American teen.

Of all the artists Sophia listens to, this was the one that resonated with me immediately. She put several of his songs on her playlists for our family trip to Utah, and was pleased but a little perturbed by how quickly her mother and I sang his praises.

How cool can somebody be if your parents listen to him as often as you do?

[Verse 1]
Living the good life full of goodbyes
My eyes are on the grey skies
Saying I don’t want to come home tonight
Yeah, and I’m high up, off what?
I don’t even remember
But my friend passed out in the Uber ride

[Pre-Chorus]
Oh, I’m from the city of the 9-1-5
Where all the girls are pretty
And they’re down for the hype
All my boys are with me
Going up for the night
But who cares, who cares
‘Cause this is our year

[Chorus]
So wake me up in the spring
While I’m high off my American dream
We don’t always say what we mean
That’s the lie of an American teen

[Verse 2]
Maybe the end is near
But I’ve been waiting all year
To get the hell up out of here
And throw away my fears
I’m so faded (I’m so faded)
Off of all the things that I’ve taken, and
Maybe I’m not really drunk
Maybe I’m really good at faking

[Pre-Chorus]
From the city of the 9-1-5
Where all the girls are pretty
And they’re down for the hype
All my boys are with me
Going up for the night
But who cares, who cares
‘Cause this is our year

[Chorus]
So wake me up in the spring
While I’m high off my American dream
We don’t always say what we mean
That’s the lie of an American teen

[Bridge]
My youth is the foundation of me
Living life as an American teen (American teen)
American teen
Mmm, oh yeah
We don’t always say what we mean
When we’re high off our American teen
My youth is the foundation of me
Oh, I’m proud to be American

[Chorus]
So wake me up in the spring
While I’m high off my American (American dream)
And we don’t always say what we mean
It’s the lie of an American teen
My youth is the foundation of me
Living life as an American teen
American teen (American teen)

[Outro]
American Teenager
And I’ll be living this dream with you

[Chant]
We don’t always say what we mean
When we’re high off our American teen
My youth is the foundation of me
Oh, I’m proud to be American

6 thoughts on “Song of the Day #3,433: ‘American Teen’ – Khalid

  1. Dana Gallup says:

    Well, after proclaiming (jokingly) that Sophia has no musical taste at Thanksgiving, I suppose this week may make me eat my words-though perhaps not if you are weeding out the weaker material. (By the way, “Bodak Yellow” sounds like something Rihanna might have recorded, and I suspect, had she done so, you would not be trashing it).

    So, I can see the appeal of today’s song, which may make Sophia even more perturbed😊. Must confess I didn’t know the the 915 was El Paso, but I doubt anyone not from Texas really knew that.

    • Clay says:

      ‘Bodak Yellow’ sounds nothing like Rihanna, and I say that as somebody who owns all of Rihanna’s albums. For one thing, Rihanna doesn’t rap.

  2. Dana Gallup says:

    Doesn’t sound all that different than “Bitch Better Have My Money” to me.

  3. Peg says:

    Daniel your mother was born in El Paso 😊

  4. Maddie says:

    Not sure why so much hate on Bodak Yellow, but I’m a fan of Khalid too. I think Sophie has some great music taste. 🙂

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