From the chandelier
But I'm holding on for dear life
Won't look down, won't open my eyes
Keep my glass full until morning light
'Cause I'm just holding on for tonight
Sia Kate Isobelle Furler (born December 18, 1975) is an Australian Singer-Songwriter, professionally known simply as Sia, primarily known for the dramatic ballads she writes and performs and her signature face-concealing wigs she wears for most public appearances.
She got her start in the mid-1990s singing in an acid jazz band called Crisp, up until they disbanded in 1997. By then, she was branching out into a solo career (having already released a Trip Hop album), singing onto Dance Pool and then Go! Beat and releasing an album with each, as well as being a featured vocalist on several Zero 7 songs, including their hit "Destiny." Eventually, she moved to New York to tour in the States, releasing a fourth album and beginning to establish herself as an Indie Pop artist. Sia became more well-known after We Are Born, and her following album, 1000 Forms of Fear and its leading single "Chandelier" pushed her to mainstream success. She further became more famous after collaborations with other high-profile musicians.
From the beginning Sia was always uncomfortable with public attention, and would often distort her image on press shots and at live shows. After her newfound success with 1000 Forms of Fear, she decided to stop showing her face in public shows, and does every live performance either with her back to the audience or covering her face with a now iconic bob-styled wig. She does this as an effort to protect her privacy and after feeling destabilized from fame. Oh, and also because of an admitted extra sense of mysteriousness. In 2018, Sia formed the supergroup LSD with Diplo and Labrinth, and their debut album released in 2019.
In 2015, Sia announced that she would be directing a movie, titled Music. The movie stars Kate Hudson as Zu, a drug dealer fresh out of rehab, who is tasked with taking care of her non-verbal autistic half-sister Music, played by Sia's protégé Maddie Ziegler. Music came out in the early months of 2021, and despite controversy and poor reviews (mainly regarding its portrayal of autism), the movie managed to get nominated for two major Golden Globes: Best Picture - Musical or Comedy, and Best Actress – Motion Picture Comedy or Musical for Kate Hudson.
She is the cousin of Peter Furler, former frontman of Christian rock band Newsboys.
- OnlySee (1997)
- Healing is Difficult (2001)
- Colour the Small One (2004)
- Some People Have Real Problems (2008)
- We Are Born (2010)
- Best Of... (2012)
- 1000 Forms of Fear (2014)
- This is Acting (2016)
- Everyday Is Christmas (2017)
- Music - Songs from and Inspired by the Motion Picture (2021)
- Labrinth, Sia & Diplo Present... LSD (2019)
This is troping about Sia:
- A Cappella: "Mad Love" and "Tripoutro" on OnlySee.
- Adam and/or Eve: "Fire Meet Gasoline".I'm Eve, I wanna try
Take a bite
- Adam Westing
- Her appearance on The Late Late Show 's "Carpool Karaoke" is introduced by James Corden driving by, to see Sia (in her full wig) stumbling aimlessly around a sidewalk and requiring almost a minute of help getting into the car.
- An ad for Google Assistant, an app that allows the user to record vocal messages hands-free, has Sia coming up with a song hook in her makeup chair and looks to make a note of it. However, her wig is already on and so finding a way to mark it down goes awry.
- Sia portrays caricatures of herself in the television series Nobodies and her film Music (2021).
- Addiction Song: "Chandelier" is sung from the perspective of a Hard-Drinking Party Girl describing her drunken antics (including swinging from the chandelier). She also admits she's "just holding on".
- Advertised Extra: Sia's character Songbird Serenade in My Little Pony: The Movie (2017) is featured front-and-center on displays at stores as if she is the protagonist, has her own plush toy, a large plastic doll, and a lot of other miscellaneous merchandise, but she appears only at the beginning, for one scene halfway through, and for the first credits song, with very little plot relevance. Undoubtedly this is to draw in fans of Sia, as she voices Songbird and is the basis for her design. Averted with the advertisement not related to the toys though, in which she is either in the background or absent entirely.
- Age-Inappropriate Art: The music videos for "Chandelier" and "Elastic Heart" have run into controversy due to this trope. The dancing by itself isn't inappropriate (it's just interpretive dance), but the fact that the dancer, pre-teen Maddie Ziegler, is doing it in skin-colored clothes, is what caused people to think twice. The "Elastic Heart" video has it worst because it contains the girl in a cage with Shia LaBeouf, who is shirtless and also wearing skin-colored shorts. It doesn't help that the video is incredibly vague on what it's about. Some interpret it as being about a daughter dealing with an addicted or depressed father, while others think it's about a single dad whose daughter is entering adolescence, but those are just unofficial interpretations.
- Artistic License – Biology: One does not typically drink oxygen, as "House On Fire" implies.
- Adult Adoptee: Sia adopted two 18-year-old sons who had barely aged out of foster care, while at the same time became a grandmother at age 44.
- Album Title Drop: "The Fight" drops 'we are born'.
- The Alcoholic: The protagonist of "Chandelier." Sia herself has suffered addictions to painkillers and alcohol in the past.
- Alter-Ego Acting: Her album This is Acting is made up entirely out of rejected songs originally written for other singers, making it sort of a Concept Album.
- Prior to mainstream fame, Sia said: "A lot of people come up to me expecting to meet the person they have seen perform. It's not going to happen, unless my mania, my stage person, responds to them and not the real me." The mania she describes seems to just be a quirkier version of herself, which she later regretted creating due to her inability to maintain it while suffering from depression. Post-fame, Sia remains almost completely silent at shows (except for singing).
- Alternate Music Video: Sia's very first single, "Taken For Granted", had two music videos.
- Amicable Exes: The reason for Sia joining her local band Crisp in the 90s is because she bumped into an ex-boyfriend she dated as a teenager, Sam "Muskrat" Langley, who was looking for a singer in his band.
- Animated Music Video: "Hey Boy" ft. Burna Boy.
- Audience Participation Song: Sia said on The Graham Norton Show that this was a singing tip Adele gave her; when you're having trouble hitting the right notes, hold the mic out to the audience!
- Award-Bait Song
- A Wild Rapper Appears!: "Cheap Thrills" features Sean Paul and "The Greatest" features Kendrick Lamar.
- Subverted in her cover of Ninah's Cherry's "Manchild", in which Sia not only sings but also raps.
- Badass Boast: The chorus of "Unstoppable," as the title would suggest. The verses, however, reveal that the narrator is a Stepford Smiler too scared to let her feelings show.I'm unstoppable
I'm a Porsche with no brakes
Yeah, I win every single game
I'm so powerful
I don't need batteries to play
- Be Careful What You Wish For: Quoted in "Broken Biscuit".
- Birdcaged: The "Elastic Heart" music video.
- Blackmail Backfire: Released her own nude photo upon discovering that a paparazzo was trying to sell it to her fans.
- Break-Up Song:
I tell you if that's what you're about
- "Insidiously" falls into the non-romantic category.
Friends like you I can do without
No I just don't wanna, so I'm walking away
- "The Girl You Lost to Cocaine".
There is nothing that you can do, I will not stay
No I don't need drama, so I'm walking away
Yeah I am a girl with a lot on her plate
- "Big Girls Cry" and "Elastic Heart" both allude to a relationship break-up.
- "Confetti" is about Sia becoming aware of the man she loved being unfaithful.
- The Cameo
- Captain Obvious: "Drink To Get Drunk" contains lines such as:To make noise I use my breath
To unlock doors I use a key
And when I'm looking for something I use my eyes
- Celebrity Is Overrated: Hated the fame and attention towards her when she released We Are Born, with her constant touring and growing popularity taking an extreme toll on her mental health, prompting her to become a Reclusive Artist.
- Chandelier Swing: "I'm gonna swing from the chandelier, from the chandelier..."
- Changed for the Video: The music video for "Little Man" uses a different version of the song than the album version.
- Cheap Heat: Often for "Cheap Thrills": "C'mon, c'mon, turn (insert local station here) on."
- Christmas Elves: Mentioned throughout "Sunshine".Tell me your secrets tonight
I'll take 'em with me, and I'll get the elves workin' on them in the workshop
We'll take your problems apart, put 'em back using our hearts
Got the elves working so hard, make your pain stop
- Christmas Every Day: The subject of "Everyday Is Christmas".
- Christmas Songs: Everyday Is Christmas, featuring 12 original songs. Eight bonus tracks - Seven originals and one cover - have been released since.
- Cloud Cuckoolander
- As evidenced by her Twitter account. Her bio is "i am sia, i was born from the bumhole of a unicorn named steve." Also, Sia named one of her dogs "Turtle" because it's "so turtley."
- Whilst touring her fourth and fifth albums, Sia performed a few original ditties between normal songs, such as Pee On You and Rat Poop.
- She has also expressed a religious belief in a higher power known as "Whatever Dude", who is a "a queer, surfing Santa" that resembles her grandpa. In case you think she's just trolling, she has a tattoo of this.
- She once began an interview with Rolling Stone magazine by apologizing for taking so long to pick up the phone because she was busy "taking a wee".
- Colorful Song: Not a song about colors, but the pre-chorus of "Candy Cane Lane" mentions multiple to highlight the colorful nature of the titular location. Also doubles as a reference to the song "I Can Sing a Rainbow".Red and yellow and pink and green
Orange and purple and blue
- Concept Video: "Elastic Heart"
- Cope by Creating: "Bird Set Free".And I don't care if I sing off-key
I find myself in my melodies
I sing for love, I sing for me
I shout it out like a bird set free
- The Cover Changes the Meaning: Sia's cover of "Gimme Me" by Britney Spears is considerably more melancholy than the original.
- Cover Version
- Crappy Holidays
'Cause if Christmas is so green and so red, then why am I so blue, why am I so blue?
- "My Old Santa Claus" describes Sia dealing with a break-up around Christmas.
- "Pin Drop" describes Sia fearing being alone on Christmas.
- Crystal Ball
The crystal ball sees only pain for any man who comes my way
- Mentions needing one in "Deer in Headlights".
- Mentioned in her unreleased song "Too Beautiful".
- Dark and Troubled Past: Her history of mental health problems (complex-PTSD originally misdiagnosed as bipolar disorder, panic attacks, and various addictions) provides a lot of inspiration for her lyrics.
- Darker and Edgier: 1000 Forms of Fear tears down the funny, quirky image from the previous We Are Born and weave anew the violent and dark lyrics with heavy instruments.
- Deconstruction: "Chandelier" is one to the typical pop party song. The singer is staying up all night, partying and drinking... and their alcoholism and general lifestyle have serious consequences, and possibly are the result of depression and suicidality.
- Deer in the Headlights: Has a song called "Deer in Headlights", and also says the phrase in "She Wolf (Falling to Pieces)".
- Deliberately Monochrome: The "Cheap Thrills" lyric video.
- Determinator: "Never Give Up" from the 2016 movie Lion — which is based on the story of Real Life Determinator Saroo Brierley, who was separated from his family in India as a child, was adopted by an Australian family, and set out to find, and was reunited with, his birth family 25 years later.
- Also in "Titanium". And "Elastic Heart", and probably more. Even "Rainbow" has shades of this. She likes this trope a lot, which is perhaps unsurprising given all of the things she's been through in her life.
- The Diss Track
- "Confetti" and "Play Dumb" are jabs at a cheating ex. However, whether or not the songs describe fictional scenarios or true events remains unknown, and despite her marriage with Erik Anders Lang falling apart presumably due to her infertility, she has never accused him of being unfaithful.
- Driving Song: "Beautiful Calm Driving" alludes to this.
- Drunken Song: If you listen closely, the pre-chorus to "Chandelier" ("1, 2, 3, drink") is autotuned which makes it sound as if Sia is slurring due to drunkenness, which fits with the theme of the song.
- Early-Installment Weirdness: Her debut album OnlySee is very trippy and experimental.
- Eat the Camera: The camera zooms into Maddie Ziegler's mouth at one point in "The Greatest" music video.
- Epic Fail: Described in "Straight for the Knife".If your goal was to love, you scored an epic miss
- Eyes Out of Sight: Her established look, a black-and-white bob wig that covers everything but her mouth.
- Face on the Cover: Healing is Difficult, Some People Have Real Problems, and We Are Born, which caused older fans some puzzlement when she decided to become The Faceless in public in 2014.
- Her face is the one on the original cover of This Is Acting, albeit distorted.
- Maddie Ziegler can be seen on the cover of This Is Acting: Deluxe Edition and Everyday Is Christmas.
- The Faceless: Became this in 2014, with the explanation of a disillusionment with her fame; she often wears large wigs or accessories that cover her eyes, and has done live performances with her back facing the audience. Or she will have Maddie Ziegler portray a young version of herself.
- Face Your Fears: Sia urges a friend to face his fears in pursuing a relationship with a woman in "Salted Wound". The line, "feel the fear and do it anyway", references the self-help book of the same name by Susan Jeffers.
- Family-Unfriendly Violence: 1000 Forms of Fear has been called far too violent and introspective for Top 40 radio. Most evident in "Free the Animal":Detonate me (shoot me like a cannonball)
Granulate me (kill me like an animal)
Decapitate me (hit me like a baseball)
- Fangirl: Says she was one of David Letterman as a child, and her excitement upon meeting him on The Late Show with David Letterman in 2008 is quite obvious. She also cites Stevie Wonder as one of her main influences, described a memorable experience meeting him when she was 11, and name-drops him in her 2020 single "Together".
- Fake-Out Fade-Out: "Breathe Me" seemingly finishes after its second chorus, before the music starts again and an instrumental closes the song.
- '50s Hair: The "Cheap Thrills" lyric video features a very '50s retraux vibe reminiscent of dance shows like American Bandstand, down to the costumes and hairstyles. Only one couple gets the anachronism, with both donning Sia's signature two-toned wig.
- Friendship Song: "Natale's Song".
- The Four Chords of Pop: "Cheap Thrills" is of the minor key version (i-VI-III-VII).
- Fun with Acronyms: LSD, the supergroup consisting of Labrinth, Sia and Diplo. They ran with the other meaning of the acronym by making the cover of their debut album a trippy Design Student's Orgasm illustration of the group members.
- Gay Euphemism: Downplayed in "Judge Me", which seems to be about facing homophobia but it isn't explicitly stated. Sia later identified as queer years after the song was released.It's such a terrible terrible shame, you keep on judging me in His name
You're so quick to shift the focus, but you can't find yourself in today's frame
But I know He'd approve, and I've nothing to prove to you
He smiled down on me lovingly, lovingly
- Genki Girl: During her tours and interviews from the 2000s through to the release of We Are Born in 2010, Sia's quirky, energetic stage presence and childlike personality was highly noticeable. Post-fame, Sia has stated in reflection that besides usually being drunk or high on her early tours, she had set herself up for failure by creating such a quirky persona that she could no longer maintain due to the fact that in her personal life she was suffering from depression.
- Greatest Hits Album: Released in 2012, ironically before she became a famous household name.
- Grief Song: Sia acknowledges the death of her first love, Dan, a few times in her Healing Is Difficult album.
And sometimes I worry my boyfriend will die
My first love is already dead
They say change and pain is a positive thing
- "Drink To Get Drunk":
So have I changed since you died?
- Hanging Up on the Grim Reaper: In "Reaper", the protagonist is being stalked by The Grim Reaper, but she rejects him in favour of all the things in life she has yet to experience.
- A similar theme is explored in LSD's "Heaven Can Wait", although that does not explicitly refer to a Grim Reaper.
- Hard-Drinking Party Girl: She was this in the past and references it in her lyrics. See Deconstruction.
- Heel–Face Turn
- "The Bully" is an apology to a girl Sia used to bully in primary school.
- Describes her formerly promiscuous lover changing for the better in "You've Changed".
- Hidden Depths: In recent years, Sia has expressed strong interest in attachment theory.
- Hidden Track: In some edition of Some People Have Real Problems, "Buttons" comes into play after a long pause at the end of "Lullaby".
- Honorary Uncle: Men at Work frontman Colin Hay is this to Sia. Due to being a close family friend and a former bandmate of her father, Sia affectionately refers to him as "Uncle Collie".
- Hymn to Music: LSD's "Audio".
- I Can Change My Beloved: Seems to have been successful in "You've Changed".
- Iconic Outfit: Her platinum blonde (+/- black) wig with either a big floppy hat (usually black, though sometimes other colours) or a gigantic hairbow (see page image). Or sometimes even both. Even better, her real hairstyle prior to donning the wig was a blonde bob cut with bangs. The cover of 1000 Forms of Fear is just a blonde wig to represent her. The half-black wig is also on the cover of This is Acting.
- If I Can't Have You…: The subject of her Zero 7 collaboration, "If I Can't Have You".
- Incredibly Long Note: Downplayed; Sia's longest held notes seem to be about 12 seconds. She notably holds a longer note than usual in this performance of "Breathe Me", as well as a belt of similar length in her performances of "Titanium" on the Nostalgic for the Present tour.
- Ink-Suit Actor: Songbird Serenade, her character in My Little Pony: The Movie (2017), looks exactly like her turned into a pony, and is also a famous singer in-universe.
- Intercourse with You: Her unreleased song, "Testosterone".
- Intergenerational Friendship: Has formed a close-knit bond with the star of her Chandelier trilogy of music videos and frequent collaborator, Dance Moms' Maddie Ziegler.
- Internet Stalking: On "Déjà Vu" with Giorgio Moroder (alongside supernatural means of stalking):Witchcraft, voodoo, love spells and Facebook
Potions, lotions, perfume to find you
- Isn't It Ironic?
- Coke ads for the Olympics and Australian supermarket Coles using "Breathe Me", a song about depression, self-harm, or attempted suicide. Granted, they only used the instrumental part after the lyrics end.
- An ad for Christian Dior perfume starring Natalie Portman used "Chandelier" — the ad is meant to associate the scent with an epic tale of passionate love, but the song is about alcoholism and the downside of a hard-partying lifestyle. The ad only uses the chorus and pre-chorus of the song, and even then cuts the word "drink" out of the line "one, two, three, drink". Out of context, "I'm gonna swing from the chandelier / I'm gonna live like tomorrow doesn't exist" sounds more romantic than self-destructive, so it's only jarring to those who know what the song is actually about.
- Kubrick Stare: One of the opening shots of the music video for "Elastic Heart" features Maddie Ziegler making this face at Shia LaBeouf.
- Lighter and Softer
I can see a rainbow in your tears as they fall on downI can see your soul grow through your pain as they hit the groundI can see a rainbow in your tears as the sun comes outAs the sun comes out
- Fans of Sia expected as much from her when she was announced to be recording a song, "Rainbow", for My Little Pony: The Movie (2017). What caught many off guard is that the song, while definitely one of her more uplifting tracks, is still fairly moody for one that was for what was assumed to be a strictly light-hearted kid's film, including themes of trauma, sorrow, and redemption.
- Generally, a lot of Sia's music released after 2014's 1000 Forms of Fear is more upbeat, motivational and positive than much of her work beforehand.
- Lipstick Mark: Both "Confetti" and "Play Dumb" mention Sia finding another woman's lipstick on her boyfriend's collar.
- Live Album: Lady Croissant, released in 2007.
- Longest Song Goes Last: "Insidiously" on Healing is Difficult and "Dressed in Black" on 1000 Forms of Fear.
- Loudness War: 1000 Forms of Fear is one of the worst offenders. The lead single "Chandelier" in particular is mastered at DR3 and has very audible clipping. It holds up better than rock music of similar loudness, but it still sounds bad.
- Love Is Like Religion: In "Cellophane", she compares her lover to a saint:Patience is your virtue, saint o' mine
- Lyric Swap: In live performances of her Madonna cover, "Oh Father", the line "Oh Father, I have sinned" is altered to "How was it that I sinned?".
- Lyric Video:
- "Cheap Thrills" featuring Sean Paul features a '50s retraux-style dance show reminiscent of shows like American Bandstand.
- "Move Your Body" features a little girl who ventures around a 1980s-style photo studio.
- "Santa's Coming for Us" features Kristen Bell as she, her family and her guests prepare a household Holiday feast as they anticipate for Santa Claus.
- Lyrical Cold Open:
- LSD's "It's Time" opens with Sia and the piano simultaneously.
- "Play Dumb" opens with the chorus, but the music does not begin until the second line.
- Lyrical Dissonance:
- At first, "Cloud" seems to be a happy, uplifting song. However, the lyrics are about a pessimistic jerk who enjoys messing things up for people because their own life is depressing.
- One could say this about a great amount of her body of work; it shines the most on We Are Born and 1000 Forms of Fear.
- "Chandelier" is an up-tempo electropop/R&B song about alcoholism.
- "Dressed in Black" conceals its happy and hopeful lyrics with dark, intimidating instrumental.
- A more downplayed example, but the lyrics of "Free the Animal" are extremely violent if you read them closely, even for a relatively dark song.
- Male Band, Female Singer: Sia's band consisted of men during her tours up until 2011. Also acted as the female singer of duo Zero 7 between 2001 and 2006.
- Melismatic Vocals: Distinctly on "Chandelier."
- Minimalistic Cover Art: Her earlier albums had bright and colourful artwork, but 1000 Forms of Fear and This is Acting had simpler artwork with a black background.
- The Mistress: There are implications in "Hostage" that the protagonist is this, with multiples references to a "secret life". She also refers to herself as a "criminal in these parts".Secret life of lovers who have others under the covers
- Murder Ballad: Her collaboration with Zero 7, "If I Can't Have You…".
- Multilingual Song
- In her collaboration with Ozuna and Doja Cat, "Del Mar", Sia sings on both the Spanish chorus and a verse in English.
- A less conventional example; during performances of "Soon We'll Be Found", Sia performs the song in sign language alongside her singing.
- Multinational Team: LSD is this; Labrinth is British, Sia is Australian, and Diplo is American.
- Music Video Overshadowing: "Chandelier" is an Ode to Intoxication. The music video depicts a Dance Moms star prancing around an empty house in Nude-Colored Clothes.
- New Sound Album: Sia started out as downtempo/Trip Hop. Her next two albums downplayed the electronic influences, and was more acoustic and mellow Indie Pop. We Are Born and 1000 Forms of Fear are both essentially pop, the former more twee-sounding with heavy guitar influence and the latter more mainstream-sounding.
- Nice Guy: Sia's lover in "Somersault".You talk to loners, you ask 'how's your week?'
You give love to all, and give love to me
- Non-Appearing Title: "Lentil".
- Nude-Colored Clothes: In the music videos for "Chandelier" and "Elastic Heart", Maddie Ziegler is wearing a skin colored leotard. It's fairly obvious up close what's she's wearing, but in more distant shots she looks naked, which combined with the dancer being clearly underage can lead to unintentional Squick.
- Ode to Sobriety: "Chandelier" starts off with a party girl bragging about her hard-drinking ways. But halfway through the chorus, it turns dark and the party girl sings about how she's just "holding on". The second verse has her hungover.
- Obligatory Bondage Song: "Hostage" could .... easily be interpreted this way.
- Odd Friendship: Reclusive Artist and Celebrity Is Overrated believer Sia has in recent years become close friends with the Famous for Being Famous Kardashian family, specifically Kim and Khloé.
- Old Dog: The Christmas Song "Puppies Are Forever" by Sia:They're so cute and fluffy with shiny coats
But will you love 'em when they're old and slow?
- Older Than They Look: She hides her face in live appearances, has a rather dainty figure and mannerisms, and only broke into the mainstream in the 2010s. The fact that she's middle-aged (and has had a career for quite some time) comes as quite a shock to many newcomers.
- Old Shame: More broadly, Sia has always been prone to Self-Deprecation, but seems to specifically have something against her earliest work. Her debut album, OnlySee, only sold 1,200 copies and to date has never been released on streaming services, making it quite a rare collector's album for fans. Due to OnlySee's obscurity, Sia has often cited her sophomore album, Healing Is Difficult, as her first album, but even then has frequently joked about it and the next album Colour the Small One both flopping.
- Only One Name: Goes by her first name only, although her debut album OnlySee was released under her full name Sia Furler.
- Pep-Talk Song: "Death by Chocolate", "Burn the Pages", "Salted Wound" and "Angel by the Wings".
- Performance Anxiety: She is unable to face a large audience due to social anxiety (she's fine with smaller audiences).
- Precious Puppy: "Puppies Are Forever".
- Protest Song: The song "One Candle" calls for people to stand together and protect animals from extinction.
- Real Life Writes the Plot: The music video for "The Greatest" pays tribute to the Orlando nightclub shooting victims, though the song was written beforehand.
- Rearrange the Song: "I'm Not Important to You" and "Sober and Unkissed" from Healing Is Difficult are reworked versions of her Crisp collaboration "Sia's Song" and her previous album's "Soon", respectively.
- Recovered Addict: After years of addictions to alcohol, drugs and painkillers, Sia has been sober since September 2010.
- Recycled Lyrics: Both 2008's "Lullaby" and 2014's "Burn the Pages":Place your past into a book
Burn the pages, let 'em cook
- Red/Green Contrast: The album cover for Everyday Is Christmas.
- Retraux: The video for "Cheap Thrills" featuring Sean Paul featuring two dancers wearing her signature two-toned wig among the dancers donning '50s Hair in a 50s-style dance show.
- Revenge Ballad: Her unreleased song “Forget My Name”.
- Self-Deprecation: "This is what you can expect from me at any given show."
- Constantly refers to her earlier albums, especially Healing Is Difficult, as flops.
- Self-Empowerment Anthem: "Bird Set Free", "Alive", "The Greatest" and "Never Give Up".
- Self-Harm: "Breathe Me" is about someone who self-harms and is asking for help.
- Series Fauxnale: Sia revealed that she only made 1000 Forms Of Fear to get out of her label contract as a singer. Thus meaning that if it had done poorly, it would have been her final album. However, since it was positively received, she decided to make This Is Acting.
- "Sweet Potato" includes the lyrics: "She knows to boil the kettle when you hum bars from Grease"
- "You're My Flame" with Zero 7 mentions a Happy Meal.
- "Sweet Design" includes the lyrics: "Thong Song, I'ma bring the part 2"
- From LSD's "Genius": "You'll be my Einstein, my Newton, my Galileo and my Hawking".
- The music video for LSD's "No New Friends" features a very Dr. Seussian setting.
- "Together" name-drops Stevie Wonder, one of Sia's influences.
- Silly Love Songs: "Somersault", "Day Too Soon", "Never Gonna Leave Me", "Golden" with Travie McCoy, "Step By Step".
- Singer Namedrop: Not actually in her work, but parodied in her appearance as herself in Nobodies, in which she portrays a fictionalized version of herself recording a theme song for a TV show with Melissa McCarthy, who ridicules her for putting her own name in the song.
- Singing Voice Dissonance: Sia is known for her powerful vocals (sometimes also American), but her speaking voice has her then-strong Australian accent.
- Small Start, Big Finish: "Breathe Me".
- Smitten Teenage Girl: Likens herself to this in "Underneath the Mistletoe".I've got a crush, la la la la la la
Like a schoolgirl
- Snowy Sleigh Bells: As one would expect, multiple times in Everyday Is Christmas.
- The Something Song
- Her solo track "Sia's Song" on the Crisp EP Word and the Deal, which was later reworked into "I'm Not Important to You" on her album Healing Is Difficult.
- "Natale's Song" from Colour the Small One.
- Stepford Smiler:
Help me, I'm holding on for dear life
- "Chandelier" is about a depressed Hard-Drinking Party Girl who turns to a night of drunken debauchery to try and push down a gnawing sense of fear and distress.
Won't look down, won't open my eyes
Keep my glass full 'til morning light
'Cause I'm just holding out for tonight
Leave my sunglasses on while I shed a tear
- "Unstoppable" is about how cool she is... so she can't show any weakness:
It's never the right time, yeah, yeah
I put my armor on, show you how strong how I am
I'm unstoppable, until you look the other way
- Even more apparent in the Perfect Isn't Pretty Mix of "Unstoppable", which has slightly different lyrics:
- Stuffy Old Songs About the Buttocks: "Sweet Design", which was written for Jennifer Lopez but ended up on This Is Acting.
- Surprise Incest: "Butterflies" plays this on the listeners. It sounds like just a regular song about lingering awkwardness in a relationship, until the very last line right at the end of the song, when she casually remarks "Because we came from the same cocoon".
- Swan Boats: Rides one in the “Day Too Soon” music video.
- Take That, Critics!: "Titanium" can be interpreted as this.
- 10-Minute Retirement: Due to her discomfort with her growing fame and the effects that touring took on her mental health, Sia planned to retire from performing in 2011 and focus on songwriting alone. However, due to having to release one more album under her publishing deal, as well as the success of collaborations such as "Titanium", Sia found mainstream success and in 2016 she decided she was stable enough to tour again.
- Textless Album Cover: Everyday Is Christmas.
- Title Track: Onlysee, Healing Is Difficult, Everyday Is Christmas and Music.
- Toxic Friend Influence: "Insidiously" has Sia calling out a toxic friend:I tell you if that's what you're about
Friends like you I can do without
- Trip Hop: Her work in the 1990s and early 2000s, including collaborations with Crisp and Zero 7.
- Trrrilling Rrrs: In "Del Mar".
- True Art Is Angsty: Opposes to this trope, as she discusses in the Wisdom of Trauma interview with Gabor Mate. Her counterargument is that both her positive and negative songs have been equally as positively received.
- Under the Mistletoe: "Underneath the Mistletoe"; also mentioned in "Sing For My Life".
- Unkempt Beauty: When she shows her face, she almost always appears this way, with no makeup and Messy Hair.
- Unplugged Version
- The final track of We Are Born is an acoustic version of "I'm In Here". It's labeled "Piano Vocal Version" because those are the only instruments.
- Piano versions of "Chandelier" and "Elastic Heart" were released on the deluxe version of 1000 Forms of Fear.
- Sia performs a piano version of "Titanium" rather than David Guetta's version. The piano version was finally released to streaming services to coincide with the song's appearance in the film M3GAN.
- We All Die Someday:
Yes, it is true, death is everyone's fate
- Her collaboration with Zero 7, "Waiting to Die".
But we've made it this far, it's time to celebrate
Everybody lives, and everybody dies one day
- Also discussed on "That's Life", a collaboration between 88-Keys and Mac Miller that Sia later joined after Miller's death.
That's life, what'cha gonna do?
- Wham Line
And sometimes I worry my boyfriend will die
- The way the music stops for a moment in "Fear" after the following line to emphasize Sia's personal fear:
My first love is already dead
- "Butterflies" is a Silly Love Song, but the final line "Because we came from the same cocoon" indicates that it's talking about siblings.
- Sia gushes about a beloved boyfriend in the first verse of "Confetti", until the line "I felt evey cell fall in love with you, but..." before revealing that he was unfaithful. The second verse delivers a similar blow; "I found lipstick on your collar... wasn't my colour".
- What the Hell Is That Accent?: Even Sia herself has poked fun at this. She's Australian, but on quite a few of her recent songs, she borders on The Unintelligible, and seems to cross between several accents (Australian, British, vaguely Caribbean, and American), as well as a bit of slurring and mumbling.
- "When I'm Gone" Song: "Dreaming", a collaboration with Zero 7, seems to be written from the perspective of someone who has died and are telling their lover to move on.
- Word Salad Lyrics: "Buttons."
- You Are Not Alone: "Rainbow" gives off this feeling, with the singer encouraging someone who has been through hard times to get better.I am here and I see your painThrough the storm, through the clouds, the rainI'm telling you you cannot escapeYou can do it, just feel, baby
You're not alone in all this
- Also present in "Courage To Change":
You're not alone, I promise
Standing together we can do anything
- Your Costume Needs Work: At Katy Perry's Witness World Wide dinner, Sia recalls being told by someone that she looked like a prettier version of Sia.
- Your Makeup Is Running: Mentioned in "Big Girls Cry":I may cry ruining my makeup