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Celebrity Break-Up Song

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That's definitely not Britney Spears with Justin Timberlake in the "Cry Me a River" video
Thought I'd end up with Sean
But he wasn't a match
Wrote some songs about Ricky
Now I listen and laugh
Even almost got married
And for Pete I'm so thankful
Wish I could say "thank you" to Malcolm
'Cause he was an angel
Ariana Grande, "thank u, next"

A major part of celebrity culture has long been celebrity couples, especially in cases of Romance on the Set, followed by the equally sensationalized celebrity breakup. It's become increasingly common, if one of those celebrities is a musician, for them to write a Break Up Song about it, since many songwriters write about their own lives. While earlier examples were less explicit about this (like from Carly Simon or Alanis Morissette), more recently this is almost expected from celebrities (cough Taylor Swift cough). These songs are almost always a Take That! to their ex, so expect accusations of adultery and proclamations of having moved on. In some cases, the songs can be more sorrowful, either by taking responsibility for the breakup or declaring they are Leaving You to Find Myself. If the celebrity being written about is also a songwriter, expect a clap-back Answer Song.


For whatever reason, the writer of a Celebrity Breakup Song tends to be almost Always Female. This may be because Women Are Delicate, so attacking a woman seems like less fair game, while attacking a man is more allowable. Or because it's assumed that women want to get married and are therefore more devastated about the breakup, while men have Commitment Issues, so are less hurt by the breakup. Whatever the reason, these songs often double as a Female Empowerment Song.

This trope is when two famous people break up. To qualify, both people must be famous in their own right, not just the singer alone.

Sub-Trope of Break-Up Song and Creator Breakdown. Contrast with Romance on the Set. See also Celebrity Elegy.

Word of God examples only: either confirmed by the artist or stated outright in the lyrics.




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