Comparative Essay-Music

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Longing for Love:
A Comparative Essay

Jack Ettlinger
Ms. Palka
July 18, 2010.

Longing For Love
A Comparative Essay By Jack Ettlinger

In the song I Just Haven’t Met You Yet (IJHMYY) written and composed by Michael Buble, themes such as love, optimism, and loneliness are all are evident. These themes are also found in the song Love Song For No One (LSFNO), written and composed by John Mayer, but optimism is replaced by pessimism. Both of these songs are about a man longing for love; however, in the first, the man is optimistic and hopeful, while in the second he is getting anxious and a little doubtful. The way that the themes are portrayed are both similar and different in that they are about love, optimism/pessimism and loneliness, but each song has differences on how the themes are viewed.

In I Just Haven’t Met You Yet the theme of love is evident, of course, and the song focuses around it. Just by reading the lyrics you get a warm fuzzy feeling, and that is what love is supposed to bring. But what is love really? Is it one specific thing? Or is it just a nebulous word that is used to describe the feeling two people get when they think about each other or spend time together? Love is an enigma by it’s very nature; each and every person has his or her own opinion of what it is, and it may mean different things to each, but certainly, love is what Michael Buble is feeling and discussing in his song. If everyone interprets love differently than it is possible to also make someone angry or upset, as it does in Love Song For No One.

In Love Song For No One love is embodied in a very different way than the way that Buble portrayed it. With Mayer’s song, he chose to go down the route that many people do when love is not going their way - the route to sadness, frustration and impatience. The song focuses around these feelings. Even just the title captures what the song’s overall feeling is. This guy is simply getting tired of waiting and starting to believe that the girl of his dreams may never come. In literature, music and entertainment of all kinds, love is often accompanied with warm, happy feelings, but there can also be upset. It all really depends on the point of view or reference of the person who is speaking in the piece, whatever it may be. People who have not found the love they are looking for yet in their life are one of two things; optimistic or regretful. When you read the lyrics of LSFNO you don’t get a feeling of optimism. Regret fills your brain. You are left with the impression that love can be a bitch, because sometimes you don’t find it. The lyrics, “I'm tired of being alone, so hurry up and get here,” really leaves the reader with a sense that he is not happy, but filled with despair. There is a line in the song that clearly states how he is feeling, “I’m jaded, I hate it.” That pretty much sums it up.

The main theme in Buble’s IJHMYY is love, but the undertone feeling of this love is one of optimism. Lines such as, “I know that we can be so amazing,” and “I know someday that it'll all turn out” make the reader understand that Buble is still on the hopeful side of love. He believes that it will happen for him, in fact he knows it. To him, love really is an issue of trust and Buble simply trusts that love and the girl of his dreams are coming for him. He just has to meet her first.

Mayer is a pessimistic “sad sack” in his song about love. The repeated chorus line “I'm tired of being alone, so hurry up and get here” echoes his yearning. “After all the crushes are faded, and all my wishful thinking was wrong” leaves the listener with the feeling that Mayer is unhappy, desolate and despondent. He needs love, but he really doubts that it is coming. His pessimistic attitude is overruling his belief that love will ever find him.

The last theme to discuss is loneliness. So often, an artist’s life is reflected in their art, their songs. Mayer is a lonely guy; in his life he...
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