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A recent case study, “YUNGBLUD Has a Tattoo of WHAT on His WHAT?”, performed by UMUSIC Experience, delves into the backstage personality of English alternative-rock singer, YUNGBLUD, from Doncaster, England. The study involves the filming of the opening of YUNGBLUD’s backpack. Before opening it, YUNGBLUD said, “I actually don’t even know what’s in here,” which, right off-the-bat, displayed his easygoing, spontaneous nature. It also shows that he is not very organized, as he would have a decent knowledge of the contents of his backpack if he were. This uncertainty makes him appealing because being around him must feel exciting; you never know what you are going to get.
The first item he pulled out was a pair of smelly pink socks; understandable for the most part. Next, a piece of a marble table… but there’s a story; there’s always a story. YUNGBLUD explains that the piece of marble was from the top floor of the Roxie, a cinema in San Francisco, and that “[he] and [his] guitar player got super lit and started jumping up and down on the table,” so it snapped in half, which he compared to a Greek myth. “Pretty legendary,” he said, grinning from ear to ear. YUNGBLUD’s enthusiasm while telling the story undoubtedly shows how much he likes to have fun and live in the moment, even if there will be consequences.
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He then pulled out a bottle of black “nail varnish,” which, in simpler terms, is black nail polish. Viewers get a better taste of his English nature at this point in the study. “Very important,” he says, sticking both of his middle fingers up in the air without a care in the world. This further shows his happy-go-lucky attitude. After this came an inhaler, as he simply stated, “I’m asthmatic.”
Next was fanmail, which he said he always keeps with him. As he read the letters to the camera, he was noticeably ecstatic to have received them. “I love that shit, man, [it] means a lot to me,” he said. It is also apparent that he cares deeply about his fans, as well as the support they direct towards him. While he read the letters to the camera, it seemed like he wished he could meet every single fan who took the time to write to him. This connection with his fans makes him an artist who they can rely on.
At the end of the video, he recapped what was in his backpack and started painting his nails with the bottle from his backpack “for the culture.” YUNGBLUD then impulsively stood up from painting his nails and told the camera that he had gotten a tattoo yesterday, which he then proceeded to show. On the top-left of his backside was an elephant tattoo. As there was no explanation for this, it can be assumed, based on the aspects of YUNGBLUD’s personality the viewers have seen, that the tattoo was a result of a crazy story or spontaneous decision.
Easygoingness; spontaneity; a passion for life… That’s what’s really in YUNGBLUD’s backpack.
But how does this tie into his music?
As shown in the recently released, full-length debut album, YUNGBLUD’s connection between his personality and music is apparent. The 31 second intro to the album, “Eulogy,” consists of YUNGBLUD talking, commemorating his death. Significant line, “He just didn’t give a fuck really, so the politicians killed him,” emphasizes the connection between his carefree personality, clearly shown in the case study video, and his music. The first melodic song, following “Eulogy,” is titled “Die For The Hype.” Does this title bring about any surprise? There is not much of a need to explain what the song is about…
The next two songs, “Doctor Doctor” and “Medication” are primarily about doctors trying to “diagnose” YUNGBLUD, prior to his “death.” Following these songs is “Machine Gun (F**k The NRA),” which opens with the line, “I made the news today because I hurt my friends.” After, YUNGBLUD explains that authoritative figures tied his hands behind his head and made him meditate so they could examine his mental state. It turns out that they claim he wasn’t “okay.” YUNGBLUD, however, says that when he sees his machine gun, he loses all care and lives in the moment. People just can’t seem to understand him…
This spontaneity connects to his “real-life” personality, shown in the case study. It’s simple – his happiness stems from living in the moment.
In addition to this, the following songs, “Psychotic Kids” and “Anarchist,” further show how YUNGBLUD doesn’t really fit into society. It’s simple – he just wants to make his own rules and live his own life.
Following this spontaneity, the next song, “I Love You, Will You Marry Me” shows how easily he can fall in love with somebody. This song is very upbeat and simply gives the urge to get up and dance, just like YUNGBLUD likely would.
An important lyric in the next song, “Polygraph Eyes,” that emphasizes YUNGBLUD’s point of wanting to make his own rules and live his own life is “see the Milky Way; get away from the teenage, everyday, cliche pressure.”
Next comes “Kill Somebody,” which has some extremely significant lyrics, such as, “Today you made me feel irrelevant, twisted my intelligence, made it seem there’s no brain in my head. I’m like a skeleton, can’t shut my eyes. Right now I feel like I’m an alien, I’m so f*cking dangerous; cover up the evidence with medicine; I can’t find the life. All I wanna do is kill somebody, kill somebody, kill somebody like you.” Evidently, YUNGBLUD doesn’t like being told that he is an outcast who is not smart.
“California,” the following song, revolves around the same concept of YUNGBLUD getting told he is not “okay.” He thinks that he should just go to California, perhaps on a vacation from all of it.
Long awaited is the finale that ties everything together. Album-titled song, “21st Century Liability” clearly shows that YUNGBLUD doesn’t fit in and that he knows it. Majority of the song consists of him repeating, “I’m a 21st century liability.” He’s proud to be who he is and doesn’t care what the people who criticize him think.
Each song on the album shines with authenticity and originality; a passion for life…
YUNGBLUD may not know what is in his backpack at all times, but he damn well knows who he is – on AND off the stage.
Ashley Venezia has been singing since she was three years old and began writing her own songs at age ten. She sang in her school's choir from elementary school throughout high school, as well as performed in two musicals. Aside from singing, she taught herself the basics of playing piano and is beginning to learn the guitar and ukulele. Photography, writing, and creating short videos also play a very big part in her life.