Bad Liar

Album: Rare (2017)
Charted: 21 20

Songfacts®:

  • The lead single from Selena Gomez' third studio album, "Bad Liar" finds her singing about having feelings for a new man who has come into her life.

    All my feelings on fire
    Guess I'm a bad liar


    Though Gomez has been "tryna play it coy," she just can't hide her feelings for him.
  • Gomez co-wrote the song with:

    Justin Tranter and Julia Michaels, who also worked with Gomez on her 2015 album Revival, including the hit single "Good For You."

    Ian Kirkpatrick who has also contributed to hit tunes for the likes of Jason DeRulo ("Want to Want Me"), Justin Bieber ("The Feeling") and Nick Jonas ("Levels"). Kirkpatrick also produced the song.
  • The song borrows Tina Weymouth's bassline from Talking Heads' 1977 new wave hit "Psycho Killer."Selena and Julia are Talking Heads-obsessed," Tranter told Variety. "So when we all got together in one room, Julia suggested, 'Why don't we just write over the bassline from 'Psycho Killer?' and we were all going, 'That sounds great!'"
  • Gomez's label Interscope reportedly played the track for Talking Heads' David Byrne who gave "Bad Liar" his seal of approval. Tranter said: "He heard it, loved it and approved it. Which was a pretty crazy moment for us. To have David Byrne listed next to our names is just so cool."
  • Selena Gomez discussed the song during an interview with the radio station Power 96.5 in Miami:

    "'Bad Liar' kind of tells a story of that feeling when you're obsessed with someone, when you are in the 'honeymoon phase,' I like to say. I think that this feeling, it's like you can't get them out of your head. You're willing to dress differently, you want to speak differently but that's not what I'm encouraging. It's more about the feeling. You just can't play it cool."
  • The song's retro music video recreates a love triangle at a 1970s high school. It was directed by Jesse Peretz, who has previously worked on the 2011 Paul Rudd film Our Idiot Brother as well as multiple episodes of Girls, and Nurse Jackie. The clip features Gomez playing four different roles - an awkward bi-curious high school student, her blonde, peppy gym teacher and both her parents.
  • The video was shot at Verdugo Hills High School, 10625 Plainview Avenue in the Tujunga neighborhood of Los Angeles. The education establishment has been the the location for numerous movies including The Craft, Heathers, River's Edge and The Bachelor.

    "The school that we shot in, Heathers was shot there - so many movies have been shot in it," Peretz told Billboard magazine,. "I think they've purposely really held onto their period feel to keep it nice and clean, but it definitely looks like the nostalgic version of a school compared to most schools that you go into these days."
  • This was chosen by Billboard magazine's critics as their favorite song of 2017. They said:

    "'Bad Liar' was the most interesting and enjoyable song on top 40 radio this year, a weird little moment of frustrated melody and imperfect romance that may prove to be a high point in Gomez's increasingly fascinating career."

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