Next To Me

Album: Our Version Of Events (2012)
Charted: 2 25
  • songfacts ®
  • Artistfacts ®
  • Lyrics
  • According to Scottish singer-songwriter Emeli Sandé, she wrote the third single from her debut album about having someone next to her. She sings on this toe-tapping, piano driven slice of R&B: "You won't find him drinking under tables/ rolling dice and staying out till 3/you won't ever find him being unfaithful/ you will find him next to me."
  • Sandé told Q magazine: "I wrote this in my bedroom, I wanted a song that was very simple in its idea, having someone next to you, that's the bottom line. I was inspired by early Aretha Franklin and soul music."
  • This song finds Sandé celebrating the strong, loyal men in her life. She told The Boombox why she decided to go down the route of commemorating male folk rather than bashing them. "I guess when I write, I always want to write like things that are important to me and things I've experienced in my life," she explained. "So you know, I'm lucky that I have had very strong men in my life and who have always been very loyal to me, from my dad, my manager, to my fiancé. So I just felt, how cool would it be if I could hear a song celebrating those qualities not just in men, but in people. You know, loyalty between one another and... like real uncompromising love between one another. How cool would that be if we could hear on the radio and hopefully, you know, people will be able to relate to that more than kind of just... bashing men and bashing people. So I wanted a positive outlook on it."
  • After winning the British Album of the Year prize as well as the award for top British Female Artist at the 2013 BRIT Awards, Sandé celebrated by re-releasing this track. The new version featured a contribution from Kendrick Lamar, who spits a couple of terse verses. Sandé told Spinner how the collaboration came about. "I really wanted a feature on it, something that would give the perspective of the song," she explained. "And I was so excited about Kendrick Lamar as an artist. He's really doing something that's so different and so honest. We approached him and asked him if it was something he'd be interested in doing and it worked out fantastic. I really love what he did on it and I'd love to work with him again."
  • Emeli Sandé is actually addressing different individuals when she performs the song, depending on her mood at the time. She explained to Spinner: "First of all I was thinking about my husband - he wasn't at the time - but I was thinking about having somebody strong beside you. Sometimes when I sing it I'm speaking about God. I'm just speaking about somebody or something that's with you all the time, that's constant in your life. So depending on my mood, depending on the day, I sing it about different."
  • This was named best song musically and lyrically at the 2013 Ivor Novello Awards, and also won the PRS for Music award for most performed work in the UK.
  • Speaking to BBC Radio, Sandé said the lyrics for the song didn't take too long to write, but the "oh oh ohs" took some time to add in. "It was longer perfecting [the song] afterwards," she stated.
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