“Happier than Ever” by Billie Eilish
“Happier than Ever” is one of the few Billie Eilish songs we’ve ever come across that is sorta verifiably based on her personal romantic experiences. And it would appear that she is once again speaking to her former romance with a rapper known as 7:Amp. And the reason we say once again is because another track from the Happier Than Ever album, “Your Power“, is also believed to be about him.
As it stands now Billie, who is still a teenager, has only been in one serious romantic relationship to speak of, that being with the aforementioned 7:Amp. Now it is very much probable that unless you’re adept in Pirate’s personal history, you never heard of 7:Amp before. But they dated for a couple of years, from 2018 up until 2020.
This would have been during the time that Billie’s first album blew up. And being that this has in fact been the songstress’ only true romance to date, it has gotten ample coverage, despite both parties rarely speaking upon it. And it is based on such comments that Billie has made that her fans have been able to piece together that “Happier Than Ever” is about said rapper as opposed to, say a make-believe partner.
Well actually the first verse, which relies heavily on ambiguous wording, doesn’t really read as if it is personally specific. Here it becomes evident that that vocalist and addressee have some type of beef. And even though it is never stated forthrightly we also get the impression, also taking into consideration the chorus (that came before the first verse), that this is a romantic interest the vocalist is speaking to.
And again, the language used in this passage is such that it’s hard to pin down specifically what’s going on. The vocalist refers to herself giving “interviews”. Actually that is really the only clue in the verse that Billie may be singing about herself, i.e. a celebrity. And concerning her relationship with the addressee, most simply put she appears to be presenting him as a hothead.
For example, it seems that she was tasked with telling him something that she knew may make him angry. So she instructs him beforehand to “be cool about”, which he apparently agreed to. However, upon actually hearing what she had to say, he ‘did the opposite of what he said he’d do’.
And in the process he ended up making her “more afraid”. So it obviously reads like the addressee has a bad temper which the vocalist used to fear. We are however, not enlightened to what exactly she told him that set him off in the first place.
And she’s also shaken by what he does when she isn’t around, such as “driving… under the influence”, i.e. getting behind the wheel of a car while drunk.
And in the second verse it reads as if the above is something which Billie advised 7:Amp against constantly. However, he not only ignored her but favored his “f–king friends” who urge him otherwise.
Moreover, this is the part of the song which most blaringly points to the relationship between Eilish and Amp, as she is on record beefing about an incident in which he drove drunk. And logically, the reason she was so upset is because she didn’t want dude to wind up doing anything tragic, like perhaps hurting himself or someone else.
And overall, such behavior caused a major riff in their relationship as well as making the vocalist more depressed in general.
And it is also 7:Amp whom she spoke about in times past in regards to her lack of happiness when dealing with him. And this subject happens to be the main point of the third verse and the entire song really.
But in the last verse she gets a bit more varied in her complaints. For instance, Amp was someone who ‘never showed up on time’. Also, he obviously had little regard of Billie’s mom and friends. And rather than siding with them, who were obviously in the right, Billie decided to support Amp. And this made it all the more “embarrassing” and disheartening when he went about mistreating her, i.e. making the vocalist “f–king sad”.
The Title (“Happier Than Ever”)
So now in the present, Billie and Amp have in fact broken up. And going back to the chorus/title, what the vocalist is telling the addressee is that she’s “happier than ever” that he is out of her life.
This is the aftereffect of him ‘ruining everything good’, as put in the outro, that existed between them. Initially, Billie fell for his gimmick of 7:Amp the “misunderstood” rebel, so to speak. But as the narrator actually got to know her lover, she realized that he was more akin to a genuine, 24-hour A-hole.
Are you really sure the Addressee is 7:Amp?
To be honest, the notion that the addressee is 7:Amp is just the prevailing theory around this tune. That conclusion is ultimately speculation until Eilish herself confirms it. But it is pretty obvious that this is someone that the vocalist has yet to get over, if ever.
Or let’s say that if it is about Billie’s real, personal life, which this song feels like it is, then undoubtedly it would be 7:Amp that she is singing about.
And what we also know is that in describing the title of this song/album, Billie Eilish explained it as she having recently overcome a depression she has dealt with since her youth.
So with that in mind, we can say part and parcel of that entire victory was overcoming a toxic romance that she was in.
This is the title track from Billie Eilish’s second studio album. Up until the point of its release, in addition to her debut studio album, she also has one live album and four EPs under her belt.
Said EPs are successively as follows:
- Don’t Smile at Me (2017)
- Up Next Session: Billie Eilish (2017)
- Billie Eilish Live at the Steve Jobs Theater (2019)
- Prime Day Show x Billie Eilish (2021)
They were all released by Darkroom Records in conjunction with Interscope Records, as were her first two studio albums. Meanwhile the live album, Live at Third Man Records, was issued by the titular label, Third Man Records.
We saved mention of her debut full length – When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go? – for last since that was the undertaking that really put the young songstress on the map. Indeed When We All Fall Asleep was a success of historical proportions.
For instance, in reality it resulted in seven Grammy Awards total, even though it only specifically won three. Those three were for Album of the Year, Best Engineered Album (Non-Classical) and Best Pop Vocal Album.
But also the song “Bad Guy“, which was one of the singles from the project, won two Grammys of its own, Song of the Year and Record of the Year. Then Billie Eilish took home the trophy for Best New Artist and Finneas, Producer of the Year (Non-Classical).
In fact Finneas was a direct recipient of six of those Grammys. Thus in 2020, even though he was unheard at that point, he actually took home more Grammy Awards than any other musician that year.
Finneas, whose full name is Finneas O’Connell, is actually the older brother and only sibling of Billie Eilish. And he has been absolutely instrumental in her successful career. For instance, he also co-authored “Happier Than Ever” with his sister, in addition to producing the entire album (as with When We All Fall Asleep).
In fact the two of them alone composed the album with “zero contribution from any other producers, songwriters or singers”. And to note, as of the writing of this post Finneas is 24, i.e. five years older than Billie Eilish.
This was the first song which Billie Eilish and Finneas wrote for the album it is featured on. Furthermore Eilish got the titular quote from one of her mother’s proverbs, with her mom by the way being a minor yet well-tenured Hollywood actress by the name of Maggie Baird.
And the reason Billie decided to name the album so is because this title ‘encapsulates the last few year so her life really well’.
As of the writing of this post, five singles have been released from “Happier Than Ever”, and the album itself has official been out for a little over a week. So far it has topped the UK Albums Chart (upon its debut), in addition to reaching number 1 in 11 other countries.
In fact out of the 13 countries it has charted in thus far, it is only in Japan where it has not topped the albums’ chart.
Date of Release of “Happier Than Ever”
“Happier Than Ever”, both the song and the album, were officially released on 30 July 2021.
A Commercial Success?
The album topped the Billboard 200 overnight and also charted in a few other countries. FYI, When We All Fall Asleep has concurrently been on the Billboard 200 for 122 weeks now.
However to note, whereas all five of the aforementioned singles from this album have been international hits chart-wise (except for the second out of the lot, “Therefore I Am” (2020)), their certification histories have thus far been humble (in relation to Eilish’s earlier singles) and in a couple of cases even nonexistent.
Moreover, none of them have yet to be certified in the United States. And for the record, besides the above-noted song the other four singles, in succession, are:
So even though we are anticipating this album having an impressive showing on the Billboard 200, by the looks of things it’s not going to be nearly as successful overall as When We All Fall Asleep. But again, it’s only been officially out in whole now for about a week as of the writing of this post.
Also noteworthy is the fact that even though “Happier Than Ever” (the song) was not issued as a single, it still managed to chart in 10 countries thus far. This included being a top-10 hit on the UK Singles Chart.
So at it stands now, Billie is obviously trending harder internationally than she is in her homeland of the United States. Moreover as of the writing of this post, two other songs from the album that were not released as singles, “Oxytocin” and “Getting Older“, are also present within the top 40 of the UK Singles Chart.
More Facts about “Happier Than Ever” (The Track and Album)
This track has its own music video, as directed by Billie Eilish, which came out on the same day as the song.
The first teasing of this track actually transpired on Billie Eilish: The World’s a Little Blurry, a documentary about the singer that came during February of 2021.
Billie has personally described this piece as being ‘probably the most therapeutic song she’s ever written’. And such is due to the fact that she really had an opportunity to vent, i.e. ‘scream’, during its recording.
Finneas played every instrument on this track.
A couple of months before the release of its album, Billie Eilish appeared on the cover of Vogue. That was actually her fourth time being granted such an honor. But the 2 May 2021 edition of the popular fashion magazine was perhaps the first instance since becoming a celebrity that Eilish actually appeared sexily in public, as she is well known for preferring a baggy style of dress.
Even More Interesting Facts
Eilish was born in the 21st century, more specifically on the date of 18 December 2001. That means as of the release of “Happier Than Ever” she’s still a teenager, being 19 years old.
The standard edition of “Happier Than Ever” (the album) features 16 tracks. The title song, being the 15th, is the penultimate track on the playlist. And as far as how Billie feels about the undertaking personally, upon its release she stated that she ‘love(s) every song on the project’.
On 3 September 2021, premium channel Disney+ is slated to air a concert film named after this album. The said film is entitled Happier Than Ever: A Love Letter to Los Angeles.
This album was created during the COVID-19 lockdown, a historical incident which more or less defined life in the United States during 2021 and even more so in the year 2020. Indeed according to Eilish, she ‘doesn’t think she would have made an album at all’ if not for the lockdowns.