The morning after she had broken up with her long-term boyfriend, singer Adele was in the studio, bawling and writing. Over the next day-and-a-half, she and producer Paul Epworth wrote and recorded a song about the relationship.
“When I’m about to get angry in my heart, I can really feel my blood flowing around my body… And I kept going: ‘Feel my heartbeat Paul!’ And the beat of the song was my heartbeat… It just built and built.” — Adele
While the recording was originally planned as a simple demo, Adele realized it would be tough to recapture the raw emotion of the first recording. The demo quickly became Adele’s first chart-topping song in North America — “Rolling in the Deep.”
“‘Rolling in the Deep’ was being told that my life was going to be boring and lonely and rubbish, and that I was a weak person if I didn’t stay in the relationship. I was very insulted, and wrote that as a sort of ‘fuck you.’” — Adele
Adele is just as unguarded in public. She had to turn away from the cameras when she performed at the 2011 Brit Awards, choking back tears as she finished singing “Someone Like You.” One of her favourite activities on stage is telling dirty jokes. In interviews, she speaks freely of signing up for internet dating services and being too drunk for the middle of the afternoon.
“It’s not a pose or a stance,” says Rick Rubin, who produced four songs on her album, 21. “When you hear someone bare their soul, it resonates.”
It’s this commitment to honesty that has made Adele the success she is. The vulnerability of “Rolling in the Deep” is what allows audiences to connect with her. She doesn’t feel like a traditional celebrity, she’s relatable.
By challenging yourself to be as honest and open about your vulnerabilities as Adele, you could find yourself creating deeper, more meaningful relationships with coworkers and clients alike. This type of trust can help increase productivity and job satisfaction.
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How Adele’s heartbreak inspired Rolling in the Deep
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