Harleys in Hawaii

Album: Smile (2019)
Charted: 45 110


  • This summery anthem finds Katy Perry "cruising down a heart-shaped highway" as she draws parallels between love and riding motorcycles in Hawaii.

    I'm on the back, I'm holdin' tight, I
    Want you to take me for a ride, ride
    When I hula-hula, hula
    So good, you'll take me to the jeweler-jeweler, jeweler

    Perry is using metaphors related to bike riding and Hawaiian culture to show her affection towards her sweetheart.
  • Perry was inspired to write the song following a trip on a Harley Davidson in Oahu with her fiancé Orlando Bloom. "To be on the back of a motorcycle in Hawaii with the air blowing on your face, it's so beautiful," the singer recalled to radio DJ Zach Sang. "I can remember specifically where I was; the street corner I was on in Oahu, whispering to Orlando and saying 'I'm going to write a song called Harleys in Hawaii.' And I did. That's something that will come at some point."
  • Perry wrote the song with her "Small Talk" collaborators: American singer Charlie Puth, Swedish-American songwriter Johan Carlsson, and American songwriter and rapper Jacob Kasher Hindlin. Carlsson and Puth produced the track.
  • Perry filmed the song's music video in July 2019 in Hawaii. Helmed by the Barcelona-based directing studio Manson, it shows the singer riding a Harley Davidson in a leather jacket featuring the yin-yang logo from her previous "Never Really Over" clip. Elsewhere in the visual, Perry relaxes on a beach in a floral-patterned red swimsuit and throws a low-key dance party.
  • Katy Perry performed the song live for the first time at the OnePlus Music Festival in Mumbai, India, on November 16, 2019. "We're going to sing something we've never sung before," Perry declared to the cheering crowd. "Let's go for Harleys in Mumbai."


Be the first to comment...

Editor's Picks

Danny Kortchmar

Danny KortchmarSongwriter Interviews

Danny played guitar on Sweet Baby James, Tapestry, and Running On Empty. He also co-wrote many hit songs, including "Dirty Laundry," "Sunset Grill" and "Tender Is The Night."

Neal Smith - "I'm Eighteen"

Neal Smith - "I'm Eighteen"They're Playing My Song

With the band in danger of being dropped from their label, Alice Cooper drummer Neal Smith co-wrote the song that started their trek from horror show curiosity to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

The Truth Is Out There: A History of Alien Songs

The Truth Is Out There: A History of Alien SongsSong Writing

The trail runs from flying saucer songs in the '50s, through Bowie, blink-182 and Katy Perry.

Tony Joe White

Tony Joe WhiteSongwriter Interviews

The writer of "Rainy Night in Georgia" and "Polk Salad Annie" explains how he cooks up his Louisiana swamp rock.

Stan Ridgway

Stan RidgwaySongwriter Interviews

Go beyond the Wall of Voodoo with this cinematic songwriter.

Benny Mardones

Benny MardonesSongwriter Interviews

His song "Into The Night" is one of the most-played of all time. For Benny, it took him to hell and back.