"Just Like Fire," performed by Pink / by Patrick Shea

Performer: "Just Like Fire" is currently at #1 on the Adult Contemporary Charts. Interestingly, "Just Like Fire" and the song it replaced at #1 on the Adult Contemporary charts (Justin Timberlake's "Can't Stop the Feeling") are both songs off of soundtracks for children's films. Pink has previously had two songs at #1 on the Hot 100.

Writers: Alecia Moore (Pink), Max Martin, Karl Johan Schuster, Oscar Holter; produced by Max Martin, Shellback, Oscar Holter

Title: A phrase; the second half of a simile; maybe or maybe not the main idea of the song.

BPM: 82

Length: 3:35

Structure: Verse / Chorus / Verse / Chorus / Bridge / Chorus

Points of Interest:

1) Two major forces driving "Just Like Fire," are dynamic and texture. In other words, the production really pulls us along with contrasts between quiet and loud, as well as with changes between acoustic and synth-oriented arrangement, and even with changes between drum sounds and bass sounds in the synth-oriented sections. We find ourselves almost listening to several 30 second songs smashed together. It is effective; the song is engaging throughout.

2) The lyrics prioritize craft elements; such as rhythm, rhyme, assonance, and vocal melody; over content. For example, in the first verse we have "wire" and "higher" priming us for the payoff rhyme of "liars," but the word/idea of "liars" isn't really important to the content of the lyric. This isn't really a song about the world as a bad place; it's a song about the "I" in some way. Similarly in the chorus, we see "way" and "day" priming us for the line "No one can be just like me anyway." In this case, the rhythmic and melodic contrast of the line add extra emphasis. But is this line the main idea of the song? That I'm unique? What does this have to do with being "just like fire," or lighting up the world?

3) I don't really know what the main idea of the song is, because every line in the chorus says something new and only loosely related to the other lines: "I" am blazing a path, "I" am providing a good example (or bringing joy? lighting up the world can mean several different things), "I" am in a crazy world, "I" am unique, "I" am free, "I" am untamable, "I" am breaking limitations, "I" am unique. These are talented writers, so I'm left to wonder why they would do this. Is the intent here to give lots of possible ideas for the audience to relate with, even at the expense of cohesion? Maybe one listener relates with the idea of breaking free, and another listener relates with the idea of blazing a path?