Music: Lizzo presents a 'Special' new album for her fans

The 12-track record brings back the soulful pop-rap blends that made the effervescent performer a household name.

By Agencies

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Lizzo Performs on NBC's 'Today' at Rockefeller Plaza on July 15.
Lizzo Performs on NBC's 'Today' at Rockefeller Plaza on July 15.

Published: Sun 31 Jul 2022, 12:49 PM

Last updated: Sun 31 Jul 2022, 12:55 PM

Lizzo’s summer turned up a notch July 15, with the poster child of self-love dropping her long-awaited album ‘Special’ fresh off an Emmy nomination and ahead of a forthcoming tour.

The 12-track record brings back the soulful pop-rap blends that made the effervescent performer a household name with her messages of body positivity, feminist empowerment and intimate freedom.

The hitmaker, whose 2017 song ‘Truth Hurts’ became a viral sleeper smash and boosted her to global fame two years later, promoted the release of her fourth album with a Today show performance in Manhattan outside of NBC’s studios.

“I’m so proud of this album,” she told the show. “It was three years in the making. It’s literally a classic, no-skips album. It’s the best thing I’ve ever done.”

Lizzo’s week had already kicked off to a banner start after she scored an Emmy Awards nomination for her show ‘Watch Out for the Big Grrrls’, a reality show where she searches for her tour’s back-up dancers.

“We didn’t do this for awards, we did this for ourselves. For the lives we touched making this... To shake up the industry.. and show the world how BEAUTIFUL AND TALENTED WE AREEEEE!” she posted on Instagram after learning of the nomination.


The 34-year-old artist born Melissa Viviane Jefferson debuted in 2013 but did not achieve mainstream success until the release of her third album ‘Cuz I Love You,’ which found runaway success and earned the Detroit-born, Houston-raised performer eight Grammy nominations with three wins.

She’s set to kick off a North American tour in September, with stops including New York’s Madison Square Garden and Los Angeles’ Kia Forum.

“It takes 10 years to become an overnight success,” she told Today.

“I needed to discover my self-love,” she continued, elated fans cheering her along. “The music that’s connecting to people is about my self-love.”

New album will make you feel ‘Special’

Lizzo wasn’t kidding when she came out with the title for her latest album — it truly is a journey to get to your most ‘Special’ self.

This album is an ode to body positivity that doesn’t shy away from how hard it can be to get there and the dark times we endure to feel love-worthy.

‘Special’ features the funky single ‘About Damn Time’, already a TikTok sensation (“In a minute, I’ma need a sentimental/Man or woman to pump me up/Feelin’ fussy, walkin’ in my Balenci-ussies”) and ‘Grrrls’ — modified after its release due to backlash over the use of a derogatory term towards some people with disabilities.

While the album sticks to Lizzo’s proud and loud style towards body acceptance, the slow ballad, ‘If You Love Me’, explores the doubts and uncertainties we encounter on the way and is sure to bring a tear down your cheek — or a waterfall (“When the world can’t love me to my face/When the mirror lies and starts to break/Hold me close, don’t let me run away/Don’t be afraid”).

The album feels closer and more personal from her previous work, unlocking a more vulnerable side of the extrovert artist.

However, this is Lizzo we are talking about, therefore ‘Special’ has to be a celebration as well. Pop song ‘The Sign’ is sure to be this year’s summer anthem during brunches and nights out. ‘Special’ is about friendships, heartbreaks, self-doubts, empowerment and, most importantly, love: Love for the people in our life and for ourselves and who we are.

Lizzo is still the undefeated queen of self-love, the hero we all need to feel our most authentic and special self. Just as it happens in real life, this album is a ride through exhilarating happiness and rainy days.

If you need a friendly pep talk or a soundtrack to a good cry moment, ‘Special’ will be the right companion for that.

Wherever you find yourself in your life, don’t forget the wise words Lizzo sings in the title track: “In case nobody told you today, you’re special.”

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