Hands To Myself

Album: Revival (2015)
Charted: 14 7

Songfacts®:

  • Despite other people's warnings, Gomez can't keep her hands to herself when the man sings about here is around. Over Swedish production duo Mattman & Robin's hand-clapping production, the songstress croons Justin Tranter and Julia Michaels lyrics about the sexual temptation of a no-good guy.

    Gomez said during Revival's listening party: "This is the last song I recorded on the album with Justin Tranter and Julia Michaels, and has to be one of the best songs I've ever done in my whole career."
  • The song's raunchy music video is a psycho thriller. The clip directed by Alek Keshishian (Madonna: Truth or Dare), finds Gomez playing an obsessive fan of a famous Hollywood actor, who breaks into his home with an intent to fulfil some sensual fantasies. The visual is a partnership with Beats Electronics, hence the very noticeable product placement for their Beats Pill portable speaker.

    Gomez explained the concept she was going for in a behind-the-scenes film. "I wanted the idea to feel like it was two different versions of being in this fantasy," she said. "I think everybody can have those moments where they're dreaming about what their life could be, especially girls with love. Being obsessed with the idea and you can't control yourself because that's what you want, no matter what's happening."

    "You get to see these images of what people think love is," Gomez continued. "It's theatrical, it's movie-like. And all that you end up seeing ends up being this false reality on both ends. That's what I wanted it to feel like."
  • Selena Gomez performed this song on the January 23, 2016 episode of Saturday Night Live. She was helped by some backup dancers, who like the singer also couldn't keep their hands to themselves. Gomez also delivered a smoky medley of "Good For You" and "Same Old Love" in the same show.
  • Selena Gomez told Genius about the way Justin Tranter and Julia Michaels encouraged her to experiment with this tune: "The songwriters Julia and Justin pushed me to try new things lyrically, stylistically, vocally - the biggest change is my voice. It's this sort of coy, whisper falsetto over a stripped-down beat that you're not sure what to do with at first.

    This album was the first time I fully let go of others' perception of me as an artist. After so many years of being told pop songs should be formulaic: verse, pre-chorus, bridge - I was so excited to break that formula. 'Hands To Myself' keeps you guessing throughout the whole song."
  • Speaking with IHeartRadio, Gomez said this is her favorite Revival track. "It's actually one of the last songs I recorded for the album," she said. "It's the second to last song I recorded, and we wrote it in a day, and it was incredible because I had this sass."
  • Julia Michaels has started her own solo career since co-writing this tune, She admitted to NME that she wishes now that she'd kept this song for herself. "Pretty much what you hear now is the demo we recorded," Michaels said. "I never thought about keeping it because I had a lot of insecurity about even considering being an artist at the time."
  • One of the lines, which some have heralded as one of the best pop lyrics of recent times, was improvised in the studio by Julia Michaels. She recalled to the BBC:

    "I tend to do a lot of things spontaneously, just singing into the mic. So I was doing the bridge – 'can't keep my hands to myself' - and when we stopped, I said, 'wait, guys, I have an idea. It could be really dumb but let's roll with it'."

    "And then I just sang, "I mean I could - but why would I want to" and they just went, 'Ooooooh!' Sometimes it just pops into your head. Like a little light bulb going off."

Comments: 1

  • Ace from UsHands down the most frustratingly annoying song on the radio.
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