Music

Song Review: Jillian Jacqueline Makes Complex Pain Poignantly Simple in ‘Sad Girls’

Jillian Jacqueline just released her new song “Sad Girls” on August 31, and if early fan reaction is any indication, she struck a nerve in the best way. The talented singer-songwriter first plucked at our heartstrings on her song “Reasons,” one of 2017’s breakthrough breakup songs.

“Sad Girls” kind of feels like a song that came from the emotional space right before “Reasons.” With a beautifully fingerpicked acoustic guitar accompaniment, Jacqueline paints a picture of a relationship privately in shambles.

Using just a list of nouns, she lays out a scene of a couple leaving a nice event but clearly drifting apart. The main character feels trapped in the car, because it’s “too damn far to walk alone.”

It’s a subtle scene, but one that really captures the nuance of a relationship in decline. One of the best parts about the song is it doesn’t try to “fix” the character’s situation. In fact, there’s a line that almost plays against that notion entirely.

“If it were a movie, the music would swell,” she sings. “And you’d slam the door and tell him to go to hell. But you won’t, ’cause it’s not.”

Of course, it’s Jacqueline’s song and she could take it any direction she wants to. The brilliance here is acknowledging that control but still ceding it to the reality of complicated romance.

“Sad Girls” also contains one of Jacqueline’s best lines (in my humble opinion): “And the way he says he’s sorry makes you feel so small.” It’s just such a simple yet relatable line I don’t think I’ve heard in a song like this.

Read More: The New Nashville: Jillian Jacqueline

Jacqueline co-wrote the song with producer Tofer Brown and incomparable songwriter Lori McKenna. The song will appear on her new forthcoming EP Side B, which follows (obviously) her previous EP Side A. Both of those come courtesy of Nashville’s Big Loud Records.

“I’ve loved this song for a long time,” Jacqueline says in a press release. “Sometimes it’s hard to put into words the way a heartbreak can really feel, but I had the help of Lori McKenna and my producer Tofer Brown to bring this particularly painful moment to life. The imagery might be specific, but the emotions are universal. So, this one’s for all the sad girls.”

That EP also features “If I Were You,” a song she released recently featuring Keith Urban. Jacqueline joins Kip Moore as a special guest on the road for his After The Sunburn Tour this fall.

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Song Review: Jillian Jacqueline Makes Complex Pain Poignantly Simple in ‘Sad Girls’