We already loved St. Vincent’s Daddy’s Home, but now that it’s won the GRAMMY Award for Best Alternative Album, it shines even brighter than before! The record shows off everything she does best, from her vocals to the unique production done with Jack Antonoff. And perhaps what we were most blown away by… the lyrics!
Every line of Daddy’s Home serves a purpose in showcasing the album’s main themes and the feelings St. Vincent is exploring on each song. They moved us so much that we wanted to share a few of our favorites with you! So sit back, relax, and press play, because we’re going home…
“I went to the store, I was feelin’ kinda hungry / But I didn’t have the money and the shelves were all empty…”
‘Pay Your Way in Pain’ sets the scene for the project with a pretty gloomy description of a grocery store struck by that phase of the pandemic when people were panic-buying everything from food to toilet paper. It brings us right into that fearful lockdown mindset, but it’s also a fairly dismal image in general. St. Vincent can’t find what will fulfill her for two reasons: one that’s partly in her control (not having the money), and one that’s completely out of her control (the shelves being empty).
“The joker with that funny laugh is diggin’ through the basement of my past…”
At first listen, this line on ‘Down and Out Downtown’ might seem like a nod to a random guy you see on a street corner or laughing on a train that reminds you of something long gone. But it’s actually a reference to one of St. Vincent’s late friends, to who she also dedicated the Daddy’s Home track ‘The Laughing Man.’ She’s seemingly “diggin’ through the basement” of her memories and thinking back to their time together, adding to the melancholy mood of the song.
“I signed autographs in the visitation room waitin’ for you the last time, inmate 502…”
On the album’s title track, ‘Daddy’s Home,’ St. Vincent thinks back to the last time she visited her father in prison before he was released in 2019. Since he was in jail for a decade, her career really took off when he was behind bars, so her life was completely different by the time he was out. The song opens with this funny juxtaposition, turning a family moment into one where she was treated like a true celebrity.
“If life’s a joke, then I’m dyin’ laughin’…”
We’re returning back to ‘The Laughing Man,’ this time to the actual song rather than a reference! St. Vincent faces the hard parts of her life head-on and chooses to keep pushing, or “laughin’,” in spite of how much she might be hurting. This may have been something her late friend inspired her to do, since based on her mentions of him throughout the album, he was a positive light in her life.
“Does it make you a genius or the fool of the week, to believe enough in somebody like me?”
On the folksy ‘Somebody Like Me,’ St. Vincent ponders the meaning of love and whether she deserves that deep of a connection with someone. Every lyric of this track will get you thinking and it was hard for us to narrow it down, but we went with this line because it really summarizes the song’s insecurity and uncertain outlook on romance.
So there we have it! These lines on St. Vincent’s Daddy’s Home really stood out to us and got us thinking about the attitudes and imagery she embeds into the songs. This album is such an interesting exploration of different areas in St. Vincent’s life, and there’s bound to be something you relate to on the project because of its range and versatility.