When We Were Young
Transcribed by: Costantino Carrara Music
Length: 7 pages
Why we think you'll like it
Adele Laurie Blue Adkins is young, but that hasn't stopped her from feeling nostalgic for experiences she hasn't had. "When We Were Young", which was co-written with Canadian singer-songwriter Tobias Jesso Jr. and produced by Ariel Rechtshaid, takes place from the perspective of someone twice her age. She imagines being at a party in the distant future, surrounded by everyone she's ever loved, everyone she's never loved, and all the people of her life who've drifted away. So what if those parties don’t happen in real life? "It was just like a movie," she sings. "It was just like a song."
"When We Were Young" is built around somber piano chords loaned by Randy Newman, and designed to show off her staggering, empathic voice. She raises the stakes in every section, switching between husky crackle to a soaring delivery before eventually climaxing with a come-to-Jesus money note. The sadness swells in her voice as she looks at her friends, who stand with her ravaged by time, knowing the moment won't last forever.
There are multiple versions of this song: