Why do teens love Mitski?

Alternative indie artist Mitski performs “A Burning Hill” at Shepherds Bush Empire, London. Mitski uses lots of props and light effects during her performance. (Photo courtesy Sophia Evans from The Observer)

Asian American singer songwriter, Mitsuki Miyawaki, was born September 27, 1990, in Mie Prefecture, Japan. She studied studio composition at SUNY Purchase College’s conservatory of music where she self-released her first two albums, “LUSH” (2012) and “Retired from Sad, New Career in Business” (2013) which kick started her career and have become very popular. 

Mitski’s music has been categorized as alternative indie. Her songs embody rage, greed, humiliation and heartache. Multiple students at Leesville Road High School are fans of Mitski and attended her concert earlier this month at DPAC. 

“The song ‘I will’ by Mitski is very sentimental and heartfelt and romantic. It (her performance) was very unique and inspirational…I love the way she sings and dances,” said Genesis Meija, sophomore.

“I Will” from the album Bury Me at Makeout Creek is a comforting and gentle song. The lyrics “I will take good care of you / Everything you feel is good / If you would only let you” initially describe Mitski comforting a partner. But by saying if you would only let you instead of if you would only let me she reveals that the song may actually be about accepting love herself. “I will see your body bare and still I will live here,” is about seeing someone completely with flaws and at their most vulnerable and promising to stay. 

“How could you ask me that, there are too many to choose from maybe ‘Star’ from her new album…or ‘I bet on losing dogs’,” said Hannah Williams, sophomore.

Star – The Land is Inhospitable and So Are We

In this song Mitski reminisces about a past lover. “That love is like a star / It’s gone, we just see it shining.” Their relationship has ended but she remembers their love like a star in the night sky because while it lasted it was shining bright and perfect.

I Bet on Losing Dogs – Puberty 2

“I know they’re losing and I pay for my place, by the ring / where I’ll be looking in their eyes when they’re down / I’ll be there by their side.”  Here Mitski describes entering and staying in relationships with the wrong people. These relationships are destined to end badly and leave her feeling abused. A theme throughout puberty 2 is comfort in sadness and pain to affirm her existence. 

Mitski is an incredible musician and songwriter. Her songs are full of emotion and deeper meaning. Those who saw Mitski on tour describe it as beautiful and life changing. Maybe you won’t go to her concert but hopefully you have been convinced to give some of her songs a listen.


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