“Acquainted” by The Weeknd
On this song, The Weeknd is expressing his happiness with being “acquainted” with a certain lady, who is also the addressee. And of course she would be someone whom he is romantically involved with.
But the story is at hand not that simple. Rather this lady is presented, even by the narrator himself, as being “no good”. Indeed his homeys have “warned” him about getting mixed up with her “type” of woman. What type that is exactly is not specified. However, all lyrics considered, it is feasible to deduce that perhaps, in some capacity or another, she is mixed up with another man or men.
This postulation is buttressed during the third verse. It is here where we are introduced to an idea like The Weeknd, under inspiration from his mother, desiring to find a good girl. However, the “fast life keeps gaining on” him. That is a metaphor that reads as if, as expressed in many of his other songs, Abel is unable to escape the excitable celebrity lifestyle that has been made accessible to him via his fame and wealth.
Or viewed from another direction, he most likely met the addressee under such circumstances, i.e. while out loosely partying. So just as he is living a “fast life”, she too would be living one of her own. And yes, most people would probably agree that getting seriously involved with that kind of woman isn’t the best idea.
Thesis Sentiment of “Acquainted”
But fallen in love he has. And that, dear reader, would be the thesis sentiment of this song. The singer is well aware that this romance he is in is “dangerous”. He has apparently hooked up with a girl who is perhaps just as loose as he is. But he is in love nonetheless. She is the only one who is truly able to “comfort” him, making him feel in a way that no one else does.
And with all of that out of the way, let it be known that the outro concludes the track on a bit of a different note. Here, the singer is speaking of a group of women, “girls born in the ‘90s”, as opposed to about the addressee in particular.
And in flipping the bars around a bit, what it appears he’s saying is something like women from that age group want to get with him, even though they know that he’s a playa. So The Weeknd views them as being unorthodox or as he terms it “dangerous”. And the way this all may relate to the general narrative is by implying that the addressee, this woman he has fallen in love with, is in fact a ‘90s girl.
And what makes her so “dangerous” is that her acceptance of him would also imply that she too is out somewhere doing her own thing, not giving AF, if you will. So it may be that the vocalist is saying that girls from that decade are like playas themselves. Or at least that is our theory.
All in all…
The thing about this song is that we know the singer has fallen for the type of lady that his mother, indeed even his homeys, would not approve of. But why they don’t approve of her is the mystery the audience themselves are left to decipher.
Facts about “Acquainted”
This is the sixth song on the playlist of The Weeknd’s noted album “Beauty Behind the Madness”. It was released through Republic Records, the Universal Music Group and XO Records along with the rest of the album on 28 August 2015. And later in the year it also served as the project’s fifth and final single. The album’s other prominent singles include:
And it served that purpose well. For instance, “Acquainted” went triple-platinum in the United States. It also appeared on both the UK Singles Chart and Billboard Hot 100, in addition to going silver across the pond.
A few months prior to being officially released, a working version of “Acquainted”, then entitled “Girls Born in the 90s”, did make its way onto the internet. In other words, the song was leaked along with a couple of other tracks from “Beauty Behind the Madness”.
However, it has been noted that the final version of this track sounds a lot different than said demo. For instance, “Girls Born in the 90s” was actually a collaboration with acclaimed Swedish producer Max Martin. However, he is not credited at all on the final product.
The officially credited writers and producers of this song are:
- The Weeknd
- Ben Billions
Does “Acquainted” have a Music Video?
The Weeknd and co. did commence filming a music video to “Acquainted” under the directorship of Australian filmographer Nabil Elderkin. However, the clip was never officially released, reportedly due to the song not catching on as desired.
And along those lines it should perhaps be noted that it did not achieve its aforementioned triple-platinum status until 2020.
The Weeknd is considered by many to be the top R&B artist of the early 21st century. For instance, as of the writing of this post in early-2021, having sold in excess of 75,000,000 records, he ranks amongst the most commercially-viable musical acts of all time.
Meanwhile his first project, the 2011 House of Balloons mixtape, came out as recently as 2011. Indeed all of the artists who are classified alongside him in the 75-79 million sales’ tier, as at the authoring of this post have been in the game considerably longer than he has.