rbbts

Album: Trophy (2019)
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Songfacts®:

  • rbbts (pronounced "rabbits") is a now-closed restaurant on Sullivan Street in the SoHo district of New York City. The title doesn't appear in the lyric, but holds significance for Kate Davis because she often went there during a transitional stage of her life. The song finds Davis coping with a relationship that is on the rocks, knowing in her head that nothing lasts forever, but also wanting to put the pieces back together. It was written early on in the relationship, which ultimately ended. Some other tracks on the album were inspired by the same guy.
  • In a Songfacts interview with Kate Davis, she talked about how the restaurant rbbts fit into her life. "I used to live on Prince and Sullivan in Soho, which was a really irresponsible move straight out of college. At the time, I wanted to stay as far away from any classical music as possible, and I decided to spend an exorbitant amount of money every month just to live in a place I thought was cool. But I lived in a total trash apartment, and one of the only good things was having this place rbbts pretty much across the street. It was like a skate-themed coffee shop that served breakfast foods and always closed at 4. I would go there regularly and always get some kind of breakfast food, but usually at lunch, because I would sleep in. Oh man, those days were debaucherous and very irresponsible. But yeah, that was like a regular fixture in my life, going to that place, rbbts."
  • The music video for this song, directed by Zach Eisen, chronicles events in reverse order. "It's not completely clear, but it's supposed to insinuate that the very end of the night, when you are in the bathtub, the water is all the way up, and you're fully clothed, you are trying to cleanse yourself of this sadness," said Davis. "It feels like a tragedy, and you just want to sink into it, to escape it. You can't tell whether it's a rebirth or a death, in a strange way."

    "There are all of these different scenes," she added. "You have this club scene that happens in the middle - once you've gone through this devastating breakup, you run out to find some distraction, or some place where there are other bodies that will make you feel like you're not alone, and you participate in the dancing and the catharsis of being in this really kinetic space. Then, towards the end of the video, which to me is like the beginning of the whole story, is when you see this dancing couple. And at the very end, I don't know if you notice, but he does slip out of the embrace, so it's him leaving the moment, or the relationship.

    We had some challenges with the editing because the idea was quite ambitious. But that was the sentiment we were trying to get across: the idea of losing someone or having to go through this major shift and having to respond to that. It's meant to be very emotional and very sad."
  • "rbbts" was the first song Davis released as a solo artist. Many saw her on YouTube in 2014 when she joined Postmodern Jukebox for a jazzy rendition of "All About That Bass" called "All About That (Upright) Bass." She earned a record deal soon after, but the record company had a very different vision for what Davis was as an artist - they wanted her to be a jazz singer, but she wanted to write intricate, confessional songs in a contemporary style. They spent a lot of time butting heads, then years went by with Davis in legal limbo as she escaped the label. In 2019, she finally emerged with "rbbts," the first single in her new deal with Solitaire Recordings. It was later included on her debut album, Trophy.

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