Ariana Grande's new album is finally here, you guys, so it's officially time to get hype! After gifting us all with Sweetener back in August, Grande released her fifth studio album's title track on Nov. 3rd. The catchy breakup anthem was instantly iconic, but in between all the kiss-offs to her former flames was a sweet message to one of the pop star's exes, the late rapper Mac Miller. So are there other lyrics about Mac Miller on Ariana Grande's Thank U, Next album? Because the album feels deeper and darker than Grande's previous work, and it's basically personal AF.
Fans were already convinced that two of the tracks were about Miller (I'll get to that in a sec), even before the album dropped. And Grande herself confirmed via Twitter that Thank You, Next mourns the "failed yet important, beautiful relationships" in her life. So more lyrics about Miller, who died on Sept. 7 at the age of 26 from a reported accidental overdose, seem pretty likely. Especially when you consider that the name of one of the songs is "Fake Smile," which could reference the fact that Grande is still shattered by Miller's passing but puts on a brave face to hide her pain.
Here's the full tracklist, which Grande shared on Instagram on Jan. 22:
We already know Ari mentions Miller's name in the song "Thank U, Next." I mean, the line "Wish I could say thank you to Malcolm/'Cause he was an angel," just breaks my heart every time. But fans seem to think the previously-released "Imagine," is about Miller, too. For one thing, the rapper had a tattoo on his arm that actually spelled out the word "imagine."
Then there's also the fact that it looks like Grande may have taken some of Miller's old song lyrics and incorporated them into the tune. In "Cinderella," for example, Miller says: "And when you hungry I can shut you up with stir fry." And in "Imagine," Grande sings, "Staying up all night, order me pad Thai".
Now, let's take a look at the song "Ghostin," which Ari previously explained on Twitter was about "feeling badly for the person you're with bc you love somebody else."
Could this be about the way she felt about Miller while she was still engaged to Pete Davidson?
Let's check out the lyrics:
I know you hear me when I cry, I try to hold it in at night, While you're sleeping next to me, But it's your arms that I need this time (This time), Look at the cards that we've been dealt, If you were anybody else, Probably wouldn't last a day, Heavy tears, a rain parade from hell (From hell), Baby, you do it so well, You been so understanding, you been so good, And I'm puttin' you through more than one ever should, And I'm hating myself 'cause you don't want to, Admit that it hurts you, I know that it breaks your heart when I cry again, Over him, mmh, I know that it breaks your heart when I cry again, 'Stead of ghostin' him, We'll get through this, we'll get past this, I'm a girl with, A whole lot of baggage, But I love you, we'll get past this, I'm a girl with, A whole lot of baggage, oh yeah
And what about "Fake Smile?" Is it a callback to Miller's tune "Smile Back?" We already know the song contains a sample from the 1964 song "After Laughter (Come Tears)," since Grande teased a snippet of it on Instagram on Jan. 25.
Now let's check out the rest of the lyrics to "Fake Smile":
Another night, another party, sayin' hi to everybody, I’m sorry, I start to leave, I gotta leave now, Got somewhere I gotta be now, I'm starving, Can somebody walk me to my car? If I go alone, I'm not gon’ make it very far, I'm happy for the love and all of the above, If I'm being honest, I done been through way too much, I can't fake another smile, I can't fake like I'm alright, Woo, ah (Woo, ah), And I won't say I'm feeling fine, After what I been through, I can’t lie, Woo, ah (Woo, ah), F*ck a fake smile, smile, F*ck a fake smile, fake smile, I read the things they write about me, Hear what they’re sayin' on the TV, it’s crazy, It's gettin' hard for them to shock me, But every now and then, it's shocking, don’t blame me, I know it's the life that I chose, But baby, I'm grateful, I want you to know, I'm happy for the love and all of the above, If I'm being honest, I done been through way too much
We may never get concrete confirmation from Ari herself about whether or not these lyrics are about Mac Miller, and that's OK. It's pretty obvious that everyone loves them, no matter who the songs are ultimately about.