• Nick Hartkop

March 13, 2022 (Salish Lyrics/Meaning)

Salish thematically deals with various things that have taken a long time for me to process from when I was a teenager. Hatred that I had towards my parents, insecurity regarding my sexuality, jealousy, and ultimately my own reflection of who I am now and the question of how I move forward to be the person I want to be.


When I was a teenager, I was grounded for a majority of the time because my parents found a note from my partner at the time wanting me to do something sexual. It was my freshman year of high school and puberty and feelings of attraction were new to me, and it was reinforced that it was a negative thing. I remember my dad coming home from work early because my mom found the note in my room and he was so angry at me and it made me feel so shameful. They wanted me to not see that person anymore but I didn’t understand how those things were worth punishing over, and the anger in my household festered. I felt like having relationships of any kind was a bad thing and I felt like I was wrong for feeling those things. In reality, it was a natural part of adolescence.


It was something that caused me to see my parents as my enemy and I hated them very much for it. I carried a chip on my shoulder because of it, and it even carried into my adulthood. I was always stand-offish because I felt like they didn’t love me and looked down on me for wanting to have relationships and be in love. There was a time when I was grounded when I wanted to go to a movie with my dad and he told me that if I beat him in a chess match that he would take me. It ended in a draw and I remember being heartbroken that we didn’t go because I felt like there was a rift in our relationship all because of my sexuality. I felt like I had to earn his love and It seemed like I never could. I wrote this song about a year ago when I still wasn’t in communication with my family and it’s something that’s helped me process those feelings of resentment alongside my therapy.


I have started to rebuild my relationship with my mother and father and, in my heart, I forgive them for the pain they caused me and the isolation and shame I felt because of their judgment. They are good people and I care a lot about them even if I don’t agree with the way they raised me. I look up to my dad and he tells me he loves me all the time now and it is the best feeling in the world, but there was a long time in my life I felt like he didn't. As an adult, I realized my father was dealing with a lot behind closed doors and I always wish I could have been his friend. I feel like if he would have gotten to know me as a friend when I was growing up that I could have been there for him more and maybe he would have seen me as a good person beyond my sexuality and loved me more. I know he did love me, but that part of my life was so traumatic that it still bothers me to this day when I think about it, and I still do a lot.

Salish, also deals with things a lot of teenagers experience. Sneaking away to get high, being made to feel imperfect by people who aren't perfect themselves, and reflecting on relationships that have fallen apart and wishing you could move on from them and not have to think about them anymore. Another uncomfortable thing the song deals with is that I have always been very jealous of sex and have felt like I am bad at it and that I am worse than my partner's past partners. It’s something I’ve worked through in therapy but is relevant to the song because I felt like that my entire life. In my life now I am blessed with a partner who loves me and accepts me and I love and cherish them and it is amazing to have them sing on the song with me. The song also deals with where I am in my life currently and have been for a couple years: Who am I as a person and how do I show the good of my heart to others? How do I become the person I want to be and show the world I am a good person? I don’t think it is possible because I can’t live my life waiting for the approval of other people. I have fucked up and made a lot of awful mistakes in my life, but I truly am more than those mistakes and I think that’s something a lot of people feel. We are better than the worst parts of us and our lowest moments. I hope this song resonates with people because I think pain, resentment, isolation, jealousy, and wanting to be loved are all things we experience. Thank you to anyone who checks the song out. It is currently on all streaming platforms. On a side note, I will be answering emails these next couple days so if you want to send a message I’ll make sure to get back to you. It may take me a couple days but I’ll make sure of it.

Lyrics:

You drove off your college campus

so you could go get high

in your mother's Tesla,

let me ask Alexa

how to fix my partner,

so they aren't disgusting,

so they never hurt me

maybe you could love me


I was playing dress up, beautiful and flirty

put my favorite dress on, pocket full of posies

Ashes on her tombstone, dancing in the basement

drunk with all the lights off, I hate this

My dad's working at the grocery,

he was always pissed off, Never said he loved me,

unless I fuckin earned that

told me to learn patience, my mothers sick and dangerous

she's manic and she broke my brother's bones again

could we go and see a movie?

Made me play a chess match, just to prove if I lose, we won't go

Felt bad,

but he never told me

I think I could have helped him

I think he would have loved me more if I did


And I was sick in the head man, but you were sick too

The only difference is I can't drown my problems in alcohol like you

and I'm at the bottom of that bottle, and your brother is too

and you're the end of the joint that I smoke in my room


And you're the things in my past that I want to forget

and you're the thoughts in my head that cause pain in my chest

and I get sick when I think about them both in bed

but it gets easier with time and with love said a friend

and I drowned

Away away

in a ship that sank

away away

from my own words

away away


How do I become who I want to be, not who they say I am?


Theres a change here

in the air here


could you hold me close?

Will you hurt me too?

Will you love me true?


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