The New 60's Sound of Doja Cat's 'Freak'
Last week, Doja Cat uploaded her latest official single “Freak” onto YouTube. The song was originally released two years ago but didn’t make it through Copywrite clearance due to the sampled sounds in the music itself.
The song features the first few chords of “Put Your Head on My Shoulder” by Paul Anka- a song that was originally released in 1959. Despite them only being the introductory sounds in Anka’s song, Doja Cat has tweaked them slightly with a more modern beat underlying them, and they progress through the entire song. The combination of new-and-old gives the song a fresh feeling- while it feels new to listeners, there’s an element of familiarity to it. Not just because the single features the sound Doja Cat usually encompasses in her music, vocally, but because “Put Your Head on My Shoulder” is a song that has recently surged in popularity. Thanks to the social media app TikTok, the song was rediscovered.
Doja Cat- Freak (Official Audio)
The lyrics follow the same theme of female sexuality her songs often do. The combination of soft, melodic singing and rap gives it the Doja Cat feels that her fans love. While her songs often radiate a certain energy that immediately tells you you’re listening to something she created, it’s times like these when her creativity really shines (at least in my opinion). This recreation of a song that was originally sung by a man, redesigned to encompass the awareness of female desire is genius. Not only does it sound good, but the underlying juxtapositions between the original and her single only deepen the song. At the end of the track, Paul Anka’s song is bought back, played quietly as the song fades out.
Fans around the world celebrated the official release of “Freak”, the comments on the YouTube video (which already has 1.3million views) were flooded with praise for the song that many had loved and longed for, for so long. The “Say so” singer had promoted it on Twitter the day before the surprise release, saying “Freak will be available on all streaming services tomorrow to hold you guys off while I’m working on new surprises”- her listeners were immediately excited to listen to the reworked version of a song they loved, but were also left wondering just what the surprise she promised would be. To this day, they’re still left wondering. At least we have “Freak” to satiate us while we wait!
Words by Abigail Forrest
Graphics by Georgia Walters