Fiona Apple’s music inspires confidence, self love, and emotion

The Channels Art Pages | STAFF SUGGESTION

Claire Geriak, Staff Writer

Fiona Apple’s vulnerability helped with my own self-acceptance. 

Music is a tool for many people to express themselves, get out of a funk, and look at their feelings in different media. You are able to look at your emotions from a different perspective, and connect with artists’ lyrics and instruments. For me, music always was my go-to medicine to help me understand that I was not experiencing these emotions on my own. 

However, there was a point in my life when I felt numb to listening to music. I felt no joy in picking up my guitar, and I had lost my sense of security in an artist I was secure with for years. I felt that none of my emotions were being captured by the songs. 

For a school art project, I had to analyze a music video by Apple called “Shamika.” The video features hand-drawn physical animations and experiments with the creation and perception of motion. This animation emphasizes the instruments, changing time signatures, and Apple’s voice. It was unlike anything I have heard before, and it was the first song by Apple I had on repeat. 

After liking “Shamika” so much, I decided to listen to the first track of “Fetch The Bolt Cutters,” which is titled “I Want You To Love Me.” In this song, Apple tackles the subjects of death, validating emotions and love.

Courtesy Image of Fiona Apple’s album “Fetch the Bolt Cutters.”

One of the most striking lyrics for me is “And I know none of this will matter in the long run, but I know a sound is still a sound around no one.” This helped me understand that just because people do not acknowledge or understand my emotions, it doesn’t mean that they don’t exist and should be pushed to the side. 

Apple’s experimental music has received many awards such as MTV’s Music Video Award in 1997 and three Grammy awards. She is recognized for her emotional ballads, vulnerable lyrics, and unique takes on the music and fame industry. One of her most memorable public moments was during her acceptance speech at the MTV Music Video Awards in 1997. 

“This world is bulls—,” Apple said. She explains how being true to yourself is more important than seeking validation from others. A New Yorker writer claimed Apple sounded “more insulted than grateful,” in her speech.

This speech represents her music as well because her music took a different approach than others. 

“I exist whether or not you see me. These things are true whether or not you acknowledge them,” Apple says in an interview with MTV. This lyric helped me understand why I was in a slump. I was not acknowledging my feelings, because I had never heard that line in another song before.

I chose Apple for my staff suggestion to share her unconventional musical style, and deep lyrics, and to have an opportunity to explore different musical genres all created by the same artist.