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Clairo - I Wouldn't Ask You

[Part 1]

[Chorus]
I wouldn't ask you to take care of me
Oh, and I wouldn't ask you to take care of me
I wouldn't ask you to take care of me
Oh, and I wouldn't ask you to take care of me
(I think I'm losing you)

[Verse 1]
Switchblade 'round my neck, don't get close to me
Ask about your life, still in the nose-bleeds?
Laying in your bed, call it intimacy
Wish I could get past the security
Wonder why I wake up living in a made-up
Dream of you and I, together there
Baby, wake the fuck up, time for you to grow up
Don't you know that life is rarely ever fair?

[Chorus]
I wouldn't ask you to take care of me
Oh, and I wouldn't ask you to take care of me
I wouldn't ask you to take care of me
Oh, and I wouldn't ask you to take care of me

[Verse 2]
Tell you how I feel, I keep it real clean
Lock hanging 'round my neck, you don't get a key
Come a little closer, I'll show you what I mean
Oh, boy, no, it's all for me
Ice cold, baby, I'm ice cold
You're the only one who could make me thaw
Ice cold, baby, I'm ice cold
You're the only one who could make me thaw

On “I Wouldn’t Ask You”, Clairo sings about a time in her life when she was hospitalized from severe juvenile rheumatoid arthritis and cared for by her boyfriend at the time, as she divulged in a July 2019 interview with PAPER. Throughout the song, Clairo expresses gratitude to her lover for being her caretaker, while also conveying varying degrees of intimacy. The song has two distinct conceptual parts, marked by a distinguishable change in instrumentation, tone, and style. The first part has a slow tempo, backed by a subtle piano accompaniment, similar to the opening track “Alewife.” During this part, Clairo sings with a warbly vocoded voice, as she describes her condition in the hospital, hinting at feelings of helplessness and isolation from her partner. The song then morphs into a more upbeat R&B groove, in which Clairo suddenly sings from a position of full intimacy to her partner, free from the limitations of her arthritis.

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