Following the release of her debut album Santogold in 2008, the alternative American singer-songwriter born Santi White spent the next two years touring. When she returned to start work on her sophomore release in early 2010, Santigold was, according to publicity materials, "totally exhausted and had not written anything yet." She was also unsure of her songwriting skills: "I had to find my way back to the place where my inspiration comes from," the singer explained. "It was like, 'Am I good at writing songs?' And there was nobody to be like, 'Yeah!'"
Two years later, Santigold was finally ready to release this first single from her second album Master Of My Make-Believe. It is an inspirational song about looking to the future whilst refusing to conform. "A life worth fighting for," she sings.
The song originated with a beat sent to Santigold by producer Ricky Blaze. She told MTV News how it reminded her of a boat trip that she'd taken with John Hill and Diplo, whom she worked with on her debut album, Santogold. "We were going really fast on this speedboat," the singer recalled, "and I was just holding on, sitting cross-legged on the very front of the boat, and my body was just, like, flying, like I could have been thrown off at any minute. And this guy was playing this old reggae through these little speakers, and it was blown out and distorted, and it was such a visual memory that stayed with me, and this song kind of felt like that."
It took Santigold three months to write the lyrics. "Lyrically, I was trying to talk about what I want for the world and what I want people to be," she explained to MTV News. "The youth are the hope of the future, and I want people to have the courage to trust their own vision and instincts and make up the truth for themselves and question what's told to them."
The guitar stabs you hear are courtesy of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs' Nick Zinner.