From TikTok, SMITH squeezes onto the charts with “Lemon”

The one-named artist known as SMITH went viral on TikTok over the summer with her song “Lemon,” and then it became a radio hit. Not bad for a song SMITH says was inspired by a fight.

“I wrote that in relation to an argument I was having with my partner and I started hating all the lyrics I was writing,” she tells ABC Audio. “They just seemed, like, self-serving and melodramatic and ridiculous. And I wasn’t entertained by it.”

“And so I kind of thought, so how can I make it kind of about what it’s like to be dealing with me?” she laughs. “And then, I don’t want to say a bunch of bad things about myself, because that’s not helpful. So how can I make it kind of, like, metaphorical, kind of funny and have some self-awareness?”

The way she did it was to compare herself to a lemon, singing, “Lemon wants to be sweet like a peach/ But lemon knows it’ll always be pretty bitter.” 

“It was just more, like, how in relationships, you know, you can be difficult,” says SMITH. “I think those are characteristics about myself that are true … but it’s not necessarily my outlook.”

As for why she decided to compare herself to a lemon, well, it’s because they’re everywhere in her house.

“It started [with] hearing some Zen thing that was about, you know, you keep nine lemons in a bowl to keep good energy in your room,” she explains. “So I started doing that for a long time. I think that’s where kind of the metaphor started, was me seeing those lemons. And I have blond hair, my hair looks like a lemon.”

If you prefer seasonal flavors, SMITH also has a holiday song out, “Stay With Me Santa.”

(Video contains uncensored profanity.)

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