Title: When you Love Someone

Text type: Song

Artist: James TW

When you love someone is a song based around the break up of a teenage boys parents marriage and is told from the perspective of the father singing to his son. The boy has noticed all this change in the family and is feeling neglected but he doesn’t fully understand what’s going on and can’t comprehend the reasons behind it, but his dad keeps reminding him “you’ll understand when you love someone”. Through the lyrics to James TW’s song and the music video he has shared with us, we all gain a greater understanding of what the younger boy and his little sister are going through as his parents sort out what is happening.

The song is built around change. How quickly it comes, and how uncomfortable it may be. Sometimes for the best, even though it might feel like the worst. Although this song is only three minutes forty long, we are told of the hardship and problems this young boy is facing at the moment and will be for a while. By Saying “You’ve been talking with your fists” James TW, or the dad talking to his son, communicates that the boy is extremely hurt by all that is going on and his life will be reshaped forever, for better even though he won’t be able to tell for a few more years. He has been bottling up all his anger and sometimes can’t keep the lid on which results in him “talking with his fists… round the back of the schoolyard”. The change for the teenager has been huge. The break up of a child’s parents will affect them for the rest of there life. Altho the dad tells his child “sometimes two homes are better than one”, he still can’t comprehend why two people would fall out of love. This is shown to us in both the music video and spoken through the lyrics. The boy’s expression throughout the video only changes twice. He starts off with his dad playing basketball. We can see that this is a normal bonding activity for the pair. It’s a happy environment and we witness the boy laughing and smiling. Emotions then shift as he has to go back to his house and has to be an onlooker to the change underway at home. He is the bystander of many fights which is not normal for him to see and his face broadcasts to us the anger, but most importantly the misery he is experiencing. Following all this, his dad than leaves to live away but his “room will stay the same cause” he’ll “only be away on the weekends”. Living with a single parent is a massive change that can be very hard at times, but the boy will have to get over this as he has no say in what happens at the moment. Towards the end of the video, the mother takes her son to see his dad. At the beginning, he’s frozen. He doesn’t know how to act or what to say in this situation, its like he’s meeting his dad again for the first time. His emotions than change. This than vanishes, as he realises not everything has actually changed, his parents will always love him, “no matter what”, he embraces his dad as his anger and misery converted to relief. The lyrics explain that “there’s been changes in this house, things you don’t know about in this family”. It explains that these changes “don’t make sense” to anyone and that they “don’t add up”. We know that the boy can’t get his head around the problems and adaptations to his life as the dad mentions over and over again, “you’ll understand, when you love someone”.

I found this song extremely relatable for me. My parents split when I was nine. I have an older brother who was fourteen when this happened. I feel we are portrayed in the music video by the boy and his younger sister as they are at very similar, if not exact, same age as we were. I feel that the situations we were faced with and the emotions we felt were all so similar to the those in the video and for those who the song was about. I was only nine when it happened. I was young and had no idea what was going on. Just as the lyrics state: “somethings you can’t tell your sister cause she’s still too young”. I feel that this deeply applies to me. I had to be shelter through the problem my brother, mum and dad were going through as I was too young to deal with any of this. I didn’t find it so hard the first year as I didn’t fully understand what was happening and just went with whatever. As I became older, I can now start to understand how hard it actually would have been and how it reshaped my life forever, in a major way. I can relate my brother to the older child in the music video and the one that this song is directed to as he would have had a greater understanding of the events that occurred, but still, it would not have made sense to him. Now he has found someone he loves, I believe he would understand, because “you’ll understand when you love someone”.

Personally, it now feels normal as I know no different and couldn’t image what it would be like to live with two parents. I think all the words used describe exactly what I needed to here. I still may not fully understand what happened, but one day I will learn. Listening to this song made me realize that it is extremely hard on everyone who experiences their parents splitting but it will all make sense one day. The lyrics perfectly described what my brother and I went through at this time which makes it special to me on a personal level that not many people would understand.

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