Listened On Repeat: Ch-ching by Chairlift

christine_newDid you want an anthem to keep you feeling like a badass for the rest of the week? I present to you Ch-ching by Chairlift.  You’re welcome.

Besides being a mood boosting, eclectic, indie, power soundtrack to your week, I actually think this song does something impossible: stays cohesive while having a little something for everyone.  Hear me out.  There’s electronic elements, acoustic elements (the horns tho at 3:00), a great beat, a slower more reflective section, and a versatile vocalist showing off her range.

As if the musicality of the song wasn’t enough, Chairlift’s Caroline Polachek has written some very smart and provocative lyrics.  They’re very empowering to soak in and lend gravitas balancing out the playful quality of the music.  The song opens telling the listener to stop waiting and go empower themselves.  Already off to a good start.  

 

Getting what you want can be dangerous (uh-oh)

But that’s the only way I want it to be

 

I know I’ve felt a personal draw to this piece as of late and it wasn’t until I researched it and started writing this that I understood why.  Caroline from Chairlift explaining the lyrics listed above:

“Anyone who has ever received an opportunity that they didn’t feel they exactly earn, something that fell out of nowhere, I think you are always haunted by this feeling that you’re not legit, not the real thing. And you’re waiting for some sort of sign that you are legit and doing the right thing, and then sometimes a big opportunity can have the opposite effect and make you think, like, ‘oh, can I even do this? Are people even going to believe me if I do this?’

 

It’s like getting a big job offer that maybe you feel like you don’t meet the requirements for but you just go ahead with it. It’s those kind of moments when you realize that maybe a lot of people who are doing big things aren’t necessarily qualified. Maybe that’s what makes the world go round, that people are just stepping up to the plate. It’s about that feeling.” – Caroline Polachek from Genius (link below)

I’ve had a lot of different jobs in my day.  Recently I had an interview at a job that would be a tremendous opportunity and I thought out of my league.  After years of applying for jobs and not even getting interviews I somehow landed this one.  Once I arrived it wasn’t even an interview it was more a tour and a personality test.  They offered me the position on the spot.  Ever since that day I’ve been floating somewhere between euphoria and feeling like a fraud.  How could a job this good be so easy to get?  Life’s funny like that.  I’ve been discussing with a few of my friends about the exact sentiments Caroline describes. It makes the song that much more impactful in my opinion.  It exudes that sense of confidence despite confidence’s ephemeral nature and pushes down natural self doubt.

Ch-ching takes you on a journey.  That’s for sure and I can’t stop listening.

Lyrics (you know you want to read them):

Ch-ching

Ch-ching

Ch-ching

Ch-ching

 

Nobody will help you ’til you go and help yourself

Take it and don’t wait for it to come from someone else

I’ve got everything I need right here, between my hands

And there it is right in front of me…

 

Take a look at me

Who’d have thought I’d be

The one that got away with it

I got away with it

They showed me a fantasy

I stole it for you and me

Tripped it, switch, flipped it

Slow dripped it, unzipped it

I flipped it

 

Getting what you want can be dangerous (uh-oh)

But that’s the only way I want it to be

I double dare you to keep a secret (uh-oh)

And pass it back under the table to me

I put the stash in the bookshelf (uh-oh)

Open your mouth and I’ll slip you the key

Now crack that combination (uh-oh)

Like 27-99-23

 

Ch-ching

Ch-ching

27-99-23

Ch-ching

Ch-ching

27-99-23

(Getting what you want can be dangerous)

 

Take a look at me

Who’d have thought I’d be

The one that got away with it

I got away with it

They showed me a fantasy

I stole it for you and me

Tripped it, switch, flipped it

Slow dripped it, unzipped it

I flipped it

 

Getting what you want can be dangerous (uh-oh)

But that’s the only way I want it to be

I double dare you to keep a secret (uh-oh)

And pass it back under the table to me

I put the stash in the bookshelf (uh-oh)

Open your mouth and I’ll slip you the key

Now crack that combination (uh-oh)

Like 27-99-23

 

Ch-ching

Ch-ching

27-99-23

Ch-ching

Ch-ching

27-99-23

 

If nobody sees it then nobody knows

I beg for forgiveness not permission

The music ain’t playin ’til you listen

 

Getting what you want can be dangerous

But that’s the only way I want it to be

I double dare you to keep a secret

And pass it back under the table to me

I put the stash in the bookshelf

Open your mouth and I’ll slip you the key

Now crack that combination like 27-99-23

 

Ch-ching

Ch-ching

27-99-23

Ch-ching

Ch-ching

27-99-23

 

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Contributing Music Editor Christine Banna teaches in the Animation and Interactive Media Department at Montserrat College of Art in Beverly MA. You can subscribe to Christine’s newsletter, Listen Carefully and Thoroughly Many Times, here.

This article was prepared for publication by Callie Garp.


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