The “Without Me” singer grew up dreaming about winning an American Music Award, but she has come to realise the trophies aren’t what really matter.
Growing up, Halsey would watch award shows, like the American Music Awards, and daydream about what it would be like to win an award of her own one day. The glitz. The glamour. The glory. Those trophies were like metaphors.
Yet, now that she has – she has a very different take.
While accepting the “Favourite Song (Pop/Rock)” award for her single “Without Me”at the AMAs on Sunday, the singer – known for not mincing her words – pointed out the very real problem with relying on these awards, and the external validation, to bolster your confidence.
“I would sit at home wide-eyed and watch artists in these beautiful gowns and handsome suits, like, stroll up the stairs to the stage and they would hold up these awards and they were usually gold-plated and shiny and weighted, these, like, metaphors, these trophies that were supposed to be some kind of validation for the soul-crushing and heartache-inducing work that they put into writing a song and bringing it to life. And to be honest with you, I really believed that fairy tale,” she explained.
However, being in the industry and collecting these accolades, the singer has now come to realise this is not what really matters.
“I believed these awards. When I was a kid, I used to believe that this award was the ultimate validating and that I’d come up here and laugh and cry and my fans at home would rejoice because we accomplished this thing together,” Halsey continued. “But the truth is I am older now and I’m also an artist and apparently I’m doing okay. But most of these awards really aren’t what they seem at all.”
Many believed the singer was alluding to the Grammys 2020 nominations, which she, along with other musicians such as Taylor Swift and Bruce Springsteen, were noticeably left out of this year.
Following the announcement of nominees on 20 November, Halsey tweeted: “i see a lot of you are upset. of course i’m sad too,” Halsey wrote, in part. “none of it matters. literally none of it. you’re here. im here. + everything is gonna stay exactly the same and without me is still a super tight, record breaking song.”
At some point, most of us seek external validation: the gold star, the promotion, the trophy. That’s what makes Halsey’s comments so relatable. At the end of the day, it’s not about those things, it’s about doing what you love and producing work you’re proud of.