Break Up In The End

Album: All Of It (2018)
Charted: 49
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Songfacts®:

  • Cole Swindell sings in this heartfelt ballad about a girl who got away. However, despite the pain he feels, he'd go through the experience all over again, even knowing they break up in the end.
  • The acoustic ballad was written by Jon Nite ("We Were Us," "Strip It Down"), Chase McGill ("When Someone Stops Loving You," "Sunrise, Sunburn, Sunset"). and Jessie Jo Dillon ("The Breath You Take," "Rich"). Swindell was moved by how relatable the lyrics were and they had him thinking back about a past relationship. "Maybe it didn't end on bad terms (but) it was just not gonna work out," he said. "I think those are the sad kind, when you know that there's nothing that can be done."
  • Swindell said the decision to keep the track sonically sparse was intentional. "We don't need bells and whistles on this," he said. "This all about the lyric. It's more stripped down than anything we've done."
  • The song's music video follows a relationship from the end to the beginning, requiring Swindell to lip-sync the song in reverse. "I love the concept of me walking back through my life through the relationship from when it ended to right when we met, you know," he said.
  • Cole Swindell told The Boot why he wanted to record the song:

    "I'm really happy with where I am in life now, but along the way, there were relationships that ended. Some of them were 'Ain't Worth the Whiskey'-type endings, and there have been some like ['Break Up in the End']. Those are the hard ones: You still think the world of each other; it's just not gonna work out. [This song is] a love story, in a way. Every little line describes a place that I've been at some point.

    Personally, my breakups have been about half and half [in terms of being on the receiving end or being the one doing the breaking up]. I know what it's like to get hurt, and, unfortunately, I've also hurt some people. That's what keeps me guarded. I don't want to hurt anybody, and that affects my relationships to this day. But I also know that I'm not the only one who's experienced that.

    Some people can't listen to [breakup songs] when they're going through breakups, but me, I'm the one that turns it up. That music lets me know I'm not alone. There may be people that you might think are invincible, but they go through the same things."
  • The scenario in which the listeners knew the conclusion in advance was inspired by a horror novel, David Wong's John Dies at the End, which Jessie Jo Dillon had come across in a bookstore.

    "I will always remember Jon sitting across from me with his head down," she recalled to Billboard. "I said, 'I saw this book title, John Dies at the End,' and he looked up and was like, 'We can't write that.' I was like, 'Whoa, whoa, wait a minute, I just like the thought that you completely just gave that away.' Like I already know the end of the story. I found the idea very intriguing."

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