Song of the Week: Shallow


“Shallow,” which was performed in the Oscar’s, has won many awards including a Golden Globe for best original song. Photo courtesy of: ABC

Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper starred in the recent movie, “A Star is Born.” On Sunday, Feb. 24, Gaga won her first Oscar award for the movie’s hit song, “Shallow.”

In the movie, Gaga’s character, Ally Campana, is a waitress struggling to pursue her dream to be a singer/songwriter. Ally meets Jack Maine, who is a famous country singer, played by Bradley Cooper, and they fall into a frenzy of love and chaos.

“Shallow,” written by Gaga, Mark Ronson, Anthony Rossomando and Andrew Wyatt, is a big part of the movie and is first introduced when Ally mentions that she has interest in writing her own songs. She sings “Shallow” to Jack outside of a grocery store, the simple stage demonstrating the beauty the song radiates as Jack falls in love with her and the song.

The song is introduced again onstage where a nervous Ally sings her handwritten song in front of a crowd of millions for the first time. This is a very important scene in the movie because Ally begins to see how her life could be if she continues with Jack.

The lyrics in the beginning of the song demonstrate the conflicts of Ally’s life during the time.

It starts off with Jack singing “Are you happy in this modern world?/ Or do you need more?/ Is there somethin’ else you’re searchin’ for?”

The movie “A Star is Born” develops into a love story which Gaga and Cooper re-create in their Oscar performance. Photo courtesy of: itunes

Jack asks this question to a struggling singer/songwriter Ally, a key turning point of the movie. He asks if she is happy to be complacent in where she is as a waitress occasionally singing in drag bars, or whether she dreams of life in stardom. Jack allows Ally to step out of her comfort zone and explore the world of a star.

Later in the song, Ally poses a question to Jack; “Tell me something, boy/ Aren’t you tired tryna fill that void?/ Or do you need more?/ Ain’t it hard keepin’ it so hardcore?”

Ally could see straight through the “hardcore” rock persona that Jack attempted to keep up as a famous singer. She could see that he was struggling with his own issues, using alcohol and other drugs to try to “fill the void” from the rocky relationships with his father and older brother.

The song comes together at the end to show the relationship between Jack and Ally and the way in which they compliment each other.

From the beginning, Jack admires Ally for who she is regardless of her looks which can be seen from the line “we’re far from shallow now.” The night they meet, Ally explains that the reason she has not been successful in pursuing a singing career is mostly due to her looks.

The song demonstrates for both singers what they can accomplish when their talents intertwine, but also what can happen when they split apart again. After this song is sung onstage, Ally’s stardom begins to rise and Jack’s starts to plummet. Ally writes many more songs and although they are good, “Shallow” is what initially set her apart from other artists.

Gaga, however, interprets the song in an entirely different way from her character in the movie. Gaga has been able to create this song and dive deeper into the meaning by relating it to the #MeToo movement.

Through the beauty of the song “Shallow” Gaga hopes that men and women will learn to listen to each other.

“That conversation is what makes the song successful and beautiful and why people cry when they hear it. It’s because that man and woman connect, and they are listening to each other,” Gaga explained in an interview with Variety.

“Shallow” was performed by both Gaga and Cooper at the Oscars. The song was a much-awaited encounter in the show for many fans; however, it was a surprise to many.

There was no introduction to the song and only a stage, a few mics and a guitarist were on the set. Then suddenly, a stunning Gaga and dashing Cooper walked onto the stage. Cooper began to sing and the intimacy shared between the two throughout the song was obvious to all.

“Shallow” later won a Golden Globe for the best original song along with an Academy Award for the best original song, a Grammy for the best song written for visual media, a Grammy award for the best pop duo/group performance and a Critic’s Choice movie award for best song.

The simple stage set and no introduction allowed the audience to see that the song needed none of the theatrics and backup dancers that other singers used. It furthered the beautiful message to many people that was represented through the movie “A Star is Born.”

Check out a snippet of the song below!