When We Were Young

Album: 25 (2015)
Charted: 9 14
Play Video


  • On January 21, 2015, Adele offered her first Tweet of the year when she shared a link to Vancouver singer/songwriter Tobias Jesso Jr.'s "How Could You Babe," adding, "This is fantastic, click away."

    Adele later flew to Los Angeles to meet up with Jesso and the pair wrote this piano ballad together on American composer Philip Glass' piano. She recalled to NME: "It turned out he was a really big fan of mine – and he totally kept his cool together, being thrown in the deep end, for our first co-writing session... His grandparents were friends with Philip Glass, and Tobias had inherited Philip Glass's old piano. We wrote our song, 'When We Were Young,' on that piano."
  • Adele told the story behind the song during a SiriusXM interview. "It was based on us being older, and being at a party at this house, and seeing everyone that you've ever fallen out with, everyone that you've ever loved, everyone that you've never loved, and stuff like that, where you can't find the time to be in each other lives," she explained. "And you're all thrown together at this party when you're like 50, and it doesn't matter and you have so much fun and you feel like you're 15 again. So that's the vibe of it really."
  • A video was filmed by Paul Dugdale (Rolling Stones, Ed Sheeran). It shows Adele and her touring band performing the song at London's Church Studios, where some of 25 was recorded.
  • Adele said during the 25 release party that this song, inspired by old friends, is the most meaningful song to her on the record.


Be the first to comment...

Editor's Picks

Muhammad Ali: His Musical Legacy and the Songs he Inspired

Muhammad Ali: His Musical Legacy and the Songs he InspiredSong Writing

Before he was the champ, Ali released an album called I Am The Greatest!, but his musical influence is best heard in the songs he inspired.

Chris Squire of Yes

Chris Squire of YesSongwriter Interviews

One of the most dynamic bass player/songwriters of his time, Chris is the only member of Yes who has been with the band since they formed in 1968.

Little Big Town

Little Big TownSongwriter Interviews

"When seeds that you sow grow by the wicked moon/Be sure your sins will find you out/Your past will hunt you down and turn to tell on you."

90210 to Buffy to Glee: How Songs Transformed TV

90210 to Buffy to Glee: How Songs Transformed TVSong Writing

Shows like Dawson's Creek, Grey's Anatomy and Buffy the Vampire Slayer changed the way songs were heard on TV, and produced some hits in the process.

Mike Scott of The Waterboys - "Fisherman's Blues"

Mike Scott of The Waterboys - "Fisherman's Blues"They're Playing My Song

Armed with a childhood spent devouring books, Mike Scott's heart was stolen by the punk rock scene of 1977. Not surprisingly, he would go on to become the most literate of rockers.

Stan Ridgway

Stan RidgwaySongwriter Interviews

Go beyond the Wall of Voodoo with this cinematic songwriter.