This Album Changed My Life: Emily Hatton on ‘Let Go’ by Avril Lavigne

17 June 2021 | 1:18 pm | Mallory Arbour

To get to know Melbourne-based singer-songwriter Emily Hatton a little better, we asked her why Avril Lavinge's Let Go was the album that changed her life.

Melbourne-based singer-songwriter Emily Hatton recently dropped her self-titled EP last week, which features the single Make It Slow. From innocence, blind trust, and romanticism, moving through confusion, to daring, sass, and assertiveness, there’s a song for every emotion included on the six-track EP. However, the main messages she wants people to take away from her songs, all run along the same theme – there’s always light to be found. 

To get to know Emily a little better, we asked her to tell us about an album that has changed her life.

Two words. Let Go. I know it back to front. The first physical CD I was ever gifted, and held in my hot little hands as a teen. Confessional, real, raw, honest and everything I was experiencing at the time. Avril Lavigne channeled my innermost thoughts into melodies that were so incredibly satisfying, I wanted to sing them at the top of my lungs, more than I wanted to drink Nutella milkshakes (unheard of, back then). Since then, I had the desire to create that exact experience for others.

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Pivotal for my path as a songwriter, I was deeply inspired by lyrics like, “I’m standing on a bridge / I’m waiting in the dark / I thought that you’d be here by now / There’s nothing but the rain / no footsteps on the ground...” in I’m With You. Similarly with Things I’ll Never Say - it lends to the romantic in me, igniting the ache of unrequited love: “I’m tugging at my hair / pulling at my clothes / trying to keep my cool / I know it shows.” You’re right there in that moment, heart beating fast, yearning to tell someone how you feel, but you hold it inside. These lyrics transport you and make you feel as if you’re looking through the eyes of that character. You can see, smell, hear, and feel what they are experiencing. It creates a vivid, rich world, where you can immerse yourself, and forget about your own reality for a while. The best stories, and the best music, for me, are world-building and emotion-evoking like that.

Of course, tracks like Complicated and Sk8er Boi had a catchiness that’s undeniably something I aim for melodically. Story-wise and structurally, I also learnt a lot from these tracks.

Let Go changed my life because I'd only written poetry at the time, until I learnt that teenage girls could channel what they felt into words and music, and, in doing so, could make so many other people feel understood. I didn’t feel alone in what I was feeling anymore. I felt like I had a friend backing me. As a super shy kid, I was now armed with the words and melodies of a confident, badass girl running through my veins that helped me understand life a little more and make more sense of everything.

For more of our This Album Changed My Life series, go here.
Keep up to date with Emily Hatton via her Facebook page here.

Image: Supplied