Meghan Trainor is at it again. Not only has her latest single provided a beat that you'll be dancing to in no time, but the lyrics to Trainor's "I'm a Lady" are all about celebrating womanhood. Trainor wrote the song for Smurfs: The Lost Village, which makes sense since the film puts the only female Smurf — Smurfette — in the lead. Yet you don't need the context of the latest Smurfs movie to shake it to "I'm a Lady," since it totally stands on its own, thanks in large part to Trainor's empowering lyrics for women.
Before she released "I'm a Lady" on Feb. 24, Trainor called her new song a "love-yourself woman anthem" backstage at the KIIS FM 2016 Jingle Ball. While the song isn't 100 percent perfect when it comes to encouraging all women to love themselves (what about those women Trainor mentions that she doesn't "look like" or "talk like"?), overall the lyrics for "I'm a Lady" back that claim up. As one of the definitions of "lady" from Merriam-Webster is "a woman who behaves in a polite way," Trainor is saying you should be happy with yourself even if you don't fit that specific description. There are different types of women in the world and in "I'm a Lady," the singer wants those females to be able to say that they're "proud to be a lady."
She starts off by singing:
Remember that whole thing about ladies needing to be polite? Trainor is trying to debunk that right off the bat, since she says she talks with her mouth full. (Haven't we all?) She also says she's not submissive — something else that is often unfortunately associated with "ladies" — since she's a leader, not a follower, before launching into the pre-chorus:
The pre-chorus gets a little tricky since these lyrics are reminiscent of how "All About That Bass" can be perceived as putting down women with smaller bodies. Kind of like with her first hit song, I think Trainor is trying to give a voice to women who haven't felt that they've been represented by mainstream culture in "I'm a Lady." Yet again though, it would be preferable if Trainor didn't have to take down women who are size twos or who have "gentle manners" (another Merriam-Webster definition of "lady") in her efforts to bring up other women.
After the potentially divisive pre-chorus, the chorus focuses on that "love-yourself woman anthem" that Trainor intends the song to be:
The chorus does seem to indicate that the main message of "I'm a Lady" is to invite all women to declare that they are proud to be ladies with all the patented Trainor feel-goodness that goes along with it. (Err, just ignore the pre-chorus if you want this anthem to be completely inclusive?) But then, the second verse returns to the idea that Trainor herself doesn't necessarily fit the standards of a "lady." She sings,
As a woman with a lot of emotions, I personally need this reminder that it's OK to laugh loud and cry often. Trainor is a bit defensive here about haters, which makes it seem that this idea of not being accepted as a lady by others in the past for her behavior was one of the motivators to write this song.
The bridge, like the chorus, is something everyone can sing along to, though:
This is full of the confidence that you expect from Trainor, and she wants you to share that confidence in your own self. Here's where her "love-yourself woman anthem" shines because you should be proud of yourself and acknowledge it.
The pre-chorus and chorus repeat a few times, but I think the bridge is where her message is the strongest. Because despite not representing every type of woman in "I'm a Lady," Trainor still manages in just two minutes and 46 seconds to inspire many people to sing from the rooftops that they love themselves.