As the countdown for one of the most controversial and entertaining award shows, the MTV Video Music Awards begins, there is one pop princess who will not be in attendance. As Demi Lovato begins her journey to living a healthy and sober life in a rehabilitation clinic in Chicago, IL, we still celebrate her life and her career on her 26th birthday.
Her little sister, Madison De La Garza, took to Instagram to wish her big sister a happy birthday. “Today could have been one of the worst days of my life,” She said in the lengthy post. “but instead I get to spend it thanking God, the incredible doctors, Demi’s team and everyone across the world who offered their support.” De La Garza reflected.
As we celebrate Demi’s life, her accomplishments throughout her career and her nominations for this year’s VMAs, here are five songs of Demi’s that holds strong and powerful messages:
SKYSCRAPER: This ballad speaks of staying strong and believing in oneself.
Released in July of 2011, “Skyscraper” is the leading single from her third studio album, “Unbroken”. When the song was first recorded, Demi was in the middle of fighting sobriety and entered a treatment facility to deal with her personal struggles in November 2010. Upon completing treatment on January of the following year, Lovato re-recorded the song but kept the original recording as she felt it was “symbolic” to her. This ballad speaks of staying strong and believing in oneself. With lyrics such as, “As the smoke clears, I awaken. And untangle you from me. Would it make you, feel better
To watch me while I bleed? All my windows still are broken. But I’m standing on my feet.” The single speaks on building up self-belief in yourself and staying strong. The song opens with a single piano and later accompanied by heavy percussion. A Spanish version of the song, titled “Rascacielo” was released a few days later.
STONE COLD: This ballad discusses the pain of watching an ex-lover move on and be happy with someone else.
Released in 2015, “Stone Cold” is the third and final single from her fifth studio album, “Confident”. The song was compared to the last entry “Skyscraper” by some critics, complimenting the ranges of her vocals in both tracks, and even comparing her to Adele. The lyrics depict the pain of watching an ex-lover move on after a break-up and trying to be happy for them once they find happiness with someone else. During an interview with Ryan Seacrest, Lovato said, “This song is your heartbreak song. I wanted to have a song that people can listen to when they’re going through it, or they’re thinking about a time they were heartbroken.” She also added that the track “is the type of song that I wanted people to feel in their hearts and ripped their guts out.”
NIGHTINGALE: A ballad dedicated to her friend Trenton Stout, who hanged himself at the age of thirteen.
Nightingale, a track from Demi’s 2013 fourth studio album, “Demi”. In the search for a hero, Lovato looks for someone to lean on, crooning, “Sing to me/ I know you’re there/ ‘Cause baby you’re my sanity“. During an interview with songwriter and record producer Emanuel Kiriakou, she stated: “Nightingale is definitely a personal song. It’s about one of my friends, actually, that passed away when we were thirteen. I feel like, sometimes I literally, I know when he’s in the room with me. And, I just have a really strong connection to him. I feel like he’s my nightingale.”
HEART ATTACK: A ballad that uses cardiac motifs to represent the fear of falling in love.
The leading single from her fourth studio album, “Demi”, “Heart attack” sold 215,000 copies in the US in its first week, one of her best sales week and peaked at number 10 on the US Billboard Hot 100, becoming Lovato’s second solo top-ten single in the country. Jason Evigan, one of the co-writers of the song described Demi’s contribution to the song as “she brought that song to life.” In an interview with Seventeen magazine early this year, Demi admitted that she is ready to retire the song from her set list. “I think the one I’m really ready to retire but I’m not going to is ‘Heart Attack.’ I’m not going to because I know a lot of people love that song and it was a big song for my career, so I’m definitely keeping it. But I think I’m ready to retire it a little bit.”
SORRY, NOT SORRY: A ballad about not being apologetic and staying true to yourself.
Released on July of 2017, “Sorry, not sorry” serves as the first single from her sixth album, Tell Me You Love Me. Lovato told Noisey that she had always wanted “Sorry Not Sorry” to be the lead single of Tell Me You Love Me but her closest supporters felt the title track was a better choice “because it’s emotional—it’s vulnerable“. Demi played the track for Jay-Z. “And he said ‘Sorry Not Sorry’ because it was lighthearted. He was like, ‘A lot of people see you do the emotional thing all the time, but they don’t see you have fun!’ And I was like, ‘That’s such a good point.’ And [his opinion] kind of persuaded other people, too.“