Ref

Album: Pentatonix (2015)

Songfacts®:

  • Pentatonix teamed up with actress/singer-songwriter Taylor Parks, who also penned Fifth Harmony's "Bo$$," to write this song that leaves the narrator with the upper hand in a broken relationship: "You ain't gonna win, 'cause I'm the ref."

    Scott Hoying, the group's baritone vocalist, explained: "It's so funny 'cos the lyrics…we didn't start out with the concept that it was going to be about like a referee and that type of thing but it just kind of turned into that. And I remember Taylor Parks going: 'Keep on going 'cos I'm no ref.' We all just like screamed. We just jumped up so excited. And we were like: "The name of the song is 'Ref' and we were like so pumped about it."
  • The a capella group used a real whistle to accompany the "I'm the ref," lyric. Hoying said: "The biggest struggle with the song was deciding if we wanted to emulate a whistle sound or use a real whistle, because we feel like we were losing integrity using a real whistle. But we decided to push ourselves and move forward and be progressive and so we used a real whistle.

Comments

Be the first to comment...

Editor's Picks

Charlie DanielsSongwriter Interviews

Charlie discusses the songs that made him a Southern Rock icon, and settles the Devil vs. Johnny argument once and for all.

Michael Glabicki of Rusted RootSongwriter Interviews

Michael tells the story of "Send Me On My Way," and explains why some of the words in the song don't have a literal meaning.

Laura NyroSongwriting Legends In Their Own Words

Laura Nyro talks about her complex, emotionally rich songwriting and how she supports women's culture through her art.

Graham ParkerSongwriter Interviews

When Judd Apatow needed under-appreciated rockers for his Knocked Up sequel, he immediately thought of Parker, who just happened to be getting his band The Rumour back together.

Best Band LogosSong Writing

Queen, Phish and The Stones are among our picks for the best band logos. Here are their histories and a design analysis from an expert.

George ClintonSongwriter Interviews

When you free your mind, your ass may follow, but you have to make sure someone else doesn't program it while it's wide open.