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Hello (song)

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"Hello"
Adele - Hello (Official Single Cover)
Single by Adele
from the album 25
Released
October 23, 2015
Recorded
2014
Length
4:55
4:15 (radio edit)[1]
Label
XL Recordings
Writer(s)
Adele Adkins, Greg Kurstin
Producer(s)
Greg Kurstin[2]
Adele singles chronology
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25 track listing
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Audio

"Hello" is a song by British recording artist Adele. It was released as the lead single from her third studio album, 25, on October 23, 2015. [3] It was written by Adele and Greg Kurstin, and produced by the latter. "Hello" was first teased in a 30-second snippet that aired during The X Factor on October 18, 2015.[4] The song is her first release since "Skyfall" in 2012 and marks her return to music after a three-year hiatus.[5]

Adele talked about the song in an interview with i-D, saying, "The song is about hurting someone’s feelings, but it’s also about trying to stay in touch with myself, which sometimes can be a little bit hard to do, it’s about a yearning for the other side of me… So 'Hello' is about wanting to be at home and wanting to reach out to everyone I’ve ever hurt—including myself—and apologize for it."[6]

The song received mostly positive reviews from music critics who compared it favorably to her previous releases. The accompanying music video was also released on October 23 and broke the previous Vevo Record by achieving over 23.2 million views within a 24-hour span.[7][8] The video was directed by Xavier Dolan and co-stars Adele and Tristan Wilds.

The song won the awards for Record of the Year, Song of the Year, and Best Pop Solo Performance at the 2017 Grammy Awards.

Background Edit

Adele wrote "Hello" with Greg Kurstin in Chiswick, London. Kurstin handled the majority of the song's instrumentation, including the bass, guitar, piano, and keyboards, although Adele is credited as a drummer on the track.[9] Speaking to SiriusXM's Jenny Eliscu, Adele revealed that the collaboration with Kurstin helped her overcome her writer's block:

This song was a massive breakthrough for me with my writing because it'd been pretty slow up to this point, and I felt after I worked with Greg on this, it all poured right out of me. Straight away, I felt a little bit silly singing, 'Hello, it's me,' but straight away I loved the verse and I knew it was going to be the first thing I came back with. [10]

In an interview with BBC Radio 2, Adele spoke about the inspiration behind the song, revealing, "I'm still not in touch with a lot of people that I wish I was, and I wanted to talk to them, so I wrote a song so that they could hear me and know that I still love them very much—all of them, and they all have huge parts in my life."[11] She further expanded on this with Carson Daly, stating:

‘Hello’ is sort of a longing and a curiosity for my past and everyone in it. Literally, everybody in any capacity that’s ever been in my life, from family to friends to people I’ve met randomly and had a moment in time with, and stuff like that. So, on every level. Lots of people think I’m singing of an ex-boyfriend because of my last record, but it’s on a much bigger scale than that. It’s a big hello to myself. It’s a hello to my fans as well. I think people thought I vanished and it’s the other side of 21. I’m alive, I made it. I didn’t crack under the pressure. It’s literally a phone call, 'Hello.'[12]

Lyrically, the song focuses on themes of nostalgia and regret and plays out like a conversation with one or more relationships of her past, as she told Nick Grimshaw on the BBC Radio 1 Breakfast Show: "I felt all of us were moving on, and it’s not about an ex-relationship, a love relationship, it's about my relationship with everyone that I love. It's not that we have fallen out, we've all got our lives going on and I needed to write that song so they would all hear it, because I'm not in touch with them."[13]

In a track-by-track review of the album with The New York Times, Adele revealed that "Hello" was heavily inspired by her youth:

That’s reaching out to who I used to be when I was younger. And I’m curious to know if our 7-year-old selves, if they met us when we were adults, and we were like, 'Well this is what we ended up doing,' if we’d be satisfied. I love what I do, and I feel really, really lucky, but maybe our 7-year-old selves wouldn’t. Maybe they’d be, 'That sounds boring. I want to be a nurse.'

It’s a hello to myself, hello to all my friends, hello to my ex-boyfriend, hello to who I’m going to be in 10 years, hello to my kid in 10 years, hello to my boyfriend in 10 years—to my fans, to everyone.

That line, 'It's so typical of me to talk about myself, I'm sorry' — that's my favorite lyric I've ever written.[14]

Greg Kurstin later told Entertainment Weekly, "We just wrote 'Hello' from nothing, really," adding that the main goal with the track was to write something "real and believable."[15]

Composition Edit

"Hello" is played in the key of F minor at a tempo of 79 beats per minute.[16] The repeated chord progression heard in the verse, played by the piano, follows a progression of Fm–A♭–E♭–D♭.[17]

Release Edit

On October 18, 2015, a 30-second commercial aired during The X Factor in the UK that featured what was rumored to be a new Adele song.[18] Soon after, Ryan Tedder confirmed that it was Adele's voice via Twitter.[19] No further details were given, but three days later, Adele announced through her social media that she would be releasing her third studio album, 25, soon.[20] The following day, she confirmed that the lead single was titled "Hello" and would be released on October 23.[21] The day of the song's release, she joined Nick Grimshaw's show on BBC Radio 1 to premiere the song[22] and did radio interviews throughout the day to promote her new music.

On October 29, 2015, Rick Ross released an unofficial remix of the track as part of his "Renzel Remixes" series.[23]

Reception Edit

Critical reception Edit

Upon release, "Hello" received universal acclaim from music critics. Alexis Petridis of The Guardian described it as "a big ballad, but a superior example of its kind," and opined that the song is "precisely the kind of lovelorn epic ballad that made Adele one of the biggest stars in the world."[24] Writing for The Independent, Emily Jupp stated in her review of the song that it "might not be groundbreaking, but Adele's return with her familiar, smoky sound is very welcome." She called it an "'if it ain’t broke' ballad" and said: "Adele does what she does best, belting out emotional tales of love and loss much the same as with her last album, 21, but this time, with a little more self-forgiveness."[25] Greg Kot of the Chicago Tribune wrote: "Lyrics that work best when they zoom in on personal details match her combination of vocal power and restraint."[26]

Neil McCormick from The Daily Telegraph called it "a beautiful song of loss and regret," adding that "it takes a grip on the kind of memory every listener holds somewhere in their heart and merges it with Adele’s own drama."[27] Several publications have noted the similarities between Adele's "Hello" and the song of the same name by American soul artist Lionel Richie.[28][29]

Commercial performance Edit

After three days of release, the Official Charts Company announced that "Hello" had accumulated 165,000 chart sales in the United Kingdom, of which 156,000 were downloads.[30] Also, the single was downloaded 750,000 times in the United States, breaking the week digital sales record, previously held by Flo Rida's 2009 single "Right Round."[31]

"Hello" entered at the top of the UK Singles Chart on October 30, 2015—for the week dated 5 November 2015—with 333,000 combined sales, of which 259,000 were downloads, making it the biggest number-one single on the chart in three years. It marked Adele's second UK number-one single, after 2011's "Someone Like You." Additionally, "Hello" was streamed 7.32 million times in its first week, breaking the streaming record previously held by Justin Bieber's "What Do You Mean?". Including streaming sales and excluding The X Factor and Pop Idol winners' singles, major charity campaign records and Christmas number ones, "Hello" was the second biggest selling number one of the 21st century in the UK, beaten only by Shaggy’s "It Wasn't Me," which sold 345,000 copies in a week in February/March 2001.[32] The single debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 on November 3.[33]

On November 2, Billboard reported that "Hello" was the first song ever to sell at least 1 million downloads in a week.[33] The song also debuted at the top of Billboard Hot 100, being only the 24th song to do so. It is also Adele's fourth Hot 100 No. 1, the other's being "Rolling in the Deep," "Someone Like You," and "Set Fire to the Rain."[33] The release of "Hello" helped her previous albums 21 and 19 return to the Top 40 on Billboard 200.[34]

Promotion and live performances Edit

Adele at the BBC Hello

Adele performs "Hello" on Adele at the BBC.

Prior to the release of 25, Adele partnered with Target to promote the album. Seven short music videos were filmed for different songs on the album in order to promote the Target deluxe edition, one of which was for "Hello."[35] The video features Adele sitting on a couch in an empty room, singing an abridged version of the song.

Adele performed "Hello" live for the first time for a BBC One hour-long special, Adele at the BBC. The show was recorded on November 2 and was broadcast on BBC One on November 20. It was also performed during her Adele Live in New York City, which aired on December 14.

She also performed the song on the 17th NRJ Music Awards on November 7, 2015 and later on Saturday Night Live on November 21, 2015. Her NRJ Music Awards performance was later released on both her official website and her Vevo channel.[36] Additionally, she performed the song live on Le Grand Show, RTL Television, Skavlan, and The X Factor. It was performed acoustically during the 25 album release party at Joe's Pub in New York City on November 20 as well. A live performance of "Hello" in the Church Studios, where she also recorded the music video for "When We Were Young," was released and features an interview with Adele discussing the song and album.[37] She then recorded a "classroom instruments" version of the song with Jimmy Fallon and The Roots, which aired on November 24.[38]

The song was used as the opening song during Adele's 2016 world tour. She also opened the Grammys with the song in 2017.

Track listing Edit

Digital download
No. Title Writer(s) Producer(s) Length
1. "Hello" Adele Adkins, Greg Kurstin Greg Kurstin 4:55

Release history Edit

Region Date Format Label
Worldwide 23 October 2015 Digital download XL
Italy Mainstream radio
United States 26 October 2015 Hot/Modern/AC Columbia
27 October 2015 Mainstream radio

Credits Edit

Personnel[39]

  • Adele – songwriting, lead vocals, backing vocals, drums
  • Greg Kurstin – songwriting, producer, bass, drums, guitar, electronic keyboard, piano, keyboards, engineering
  • Emile Haynie – additional instrumentation
  • Alex Pasco – engineer
  • Julian Burg – engineer
  • Liam Nolan – engineer
  • Tom Elmhirst – mixer
  • Joe Visciano – mixing assistant

Lyrics Edit

Download the ringtone and see more at Lyrics wiki!

Hello, it’s me
I was wondering if after all these years
You’d like to meet, to go over
Everything
They say that time’s supposed to heal ya
But I ain’t done much healing

Hello, can you hear me?
I’m in California dreaming about who we used to be
When we were younger and free
I’ve forgotten how it felt before the world fell at our feet

There’s such a difference between us
And a million miles

Hello from the other side
I must’ve called a thousand times to tell you
I’m sorry, for everything that I’ve done
But when I call you never seem to be home

Hello from the outside
At least I can say that I’ve tried to tell you
I’m sorry, for breaking your heart
But it don’t matter, it clearly doesn’t tear you apart anymore

Hello, how are you?
It’s so typical of me to talk about myself
I’m sorry, I hope that you’re well
Did you ever make it out of that town
Where nothing ever happened?

It’s no secret
That the both of us are running out of time

So hello from the other side
I must’ve called a thousand times to tell you
I’m sorry, for everything that I’ve done
But when I call you never seem to be home

Hello from the outside
At least I can say that I’ve tried to tell you
I’m sorry, for breaking your heart
But it don’t matter, it clearly doesn’t tear you apart anymore

Ooooohh, anymore
Ooooohh, anymore
Ooooohh, anymore
Anymore

Hello from the other side
I must’ve called a thousand times to tell you
I’m sorry, for everything that I’ve done
But when I call you never seem to be home

Hello from the outside
At least I can say that I’ve tried to tell you
I’m sorry, for breaking your heart
But it don’t matter, it clearly doesn’t tear you apart anymore

References Edit

  1. http://daily.plaympe.com/adele-hello-radio-edit/
  2. http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/adele-new-song-hello-834142
  3. http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/adele-unveils-25-track-list-plans-hello-video-20151022
  4. http://www.billboard.com/articles/columns/pop-shop/6731012/did-adele-just-preview-a-new-song-during-the-x-factor-uk-21
  5. http://www.msnbc.com/msnbc/adele-makes-history-after-hiatus-she-says-hello-again-fans
  6. http://i-d.vice.com/en_gb/article/adele-exclusive-full-cover-story-i-d
  7. http://www.billboard.com/articles/news/6737541/adele-25-album-release
  8. http://www.bustle.com/articles/119190-adeles-hello-breaks-vevo-record-proving-the-soulful-singer-is-still-at-the-top-of-her
  9. http://www.billboard.com/articles/columns/chart-beat/6738449/radio-on-adele-hello-she-can-make-you-feel-what-she-feels
  10. http://www.allaccess.com/net-news/archive/story/146974/adele-speaks-out-on-siriusxm-beats-radio-1-hello-e#sthash.oQphEHfD.dpuf
  11. http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p035zwgc
  12. http://amp.cbslocal.com/2015/10/23/adele-admits-almost-quitting-music-after-21-in-interview-with-carson-daly/
  13. http://www.mirror.co.uk/3am/celebrity-news/adele-fame-toxic-touring-lonelypeople-6693239
  14. http://www.nytimes.com/2015/11/24/arts/music/adele-on-25-song-by-song.html
  15. http://www.ew.com/article/2015/10/26/greg-kurstin-adele-hello-song-interview
  16. https://www.audiokeychain.com/track/vqs/adele-hello
  17. http://www.musicnotes.com/sheetmusic/mtd.asp?ppn=MN0156888
  18. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-arts-34567653
  19. https://twitter.com/onerepublic/status/655823960089755648
  20. https://twitter.com/Adele/status/656787881349009408
  21. http://www.bbc.co.uk/newsbeat/article/34606780/adele-reveals-the-release-date-for-her-third-studio-album-25-and-new-single
  22. http://www.bbc.com/news/entertainment-arts-34613748
  23. http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/rick-ross-serves-solemn-opulent-remix-of-adeles-hello-20151029
  24. http://www.theguardian.com/music/musicblog/2015/oct/23/adele-new-single-hello-review
  25. http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/music/adele-hello-first-listen-review-this-is-an-if-it-aint-broke-ballad-showing-what-adele-does-best-a6705686.html
  26. http://www.chicagotribune.com/entertainment/music/kot/ct-adele-new-song-hello-20151022-column.html
  27. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/music/artists/Adele-Hello-review/
  28. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/music/news/hello-is-it-me-youre-looking-for/
  29. http://www.radiotimes.com/news/2015-10-26/hello-adele-is-it-lionel-richie-youre-looking-for
  30. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-arts-34641642
  31. http://www.idolator.com/7612834/adeles-hello-vevo-record-first-week-sales
  32. http://www.officialcharts.com/chart-news/adele-smashes-official-chart-records-with-comeback-single-hello__11165/
  33. 33.0 33.1 33.2 http://www.billboard.com/articles/columns/chart-beat/6746355/adele-hello-no-1-hot-100-debut-one-million-downloads-week
  34. http://www.billboard.com/articles/columns/chart-beat/6754034/adele-21-19-back-top-40
  35. https://corporate.target.com/article/2015/11/more-music-adele-sneak-peek
  36. http://adele.com/videos/
  37. https://www.yahoo.com/music/adele-speaks-exclusively-on-new-music-the-most-160737531.html
  38. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-yL7VP4-kP4
  39. https://www.discogs.com/Adele-25/release/7748058

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