Benjamin Joseph Levin better known as Benny Blanco shot to the spotlight in 2018 with his album ‘FRIENDS KEEP SECRETS.’ More accurately, the first track on the album, titled “Eastside” propelled Benny’s fame and fortune this year.
“Eastside” narrates a story of two lovers who had no approval for their relationship from their parents and resorted to sneaking out of the houses and meet on the Eastside of the city they lived in. Khalid’s soulful vocals and Halsey’s sharp vocals adds an extra edge to the song.
The music video, directed by Jake Schreier, shows several significant places and moments from Benny Blanco and Ashley’s life. Ashley is introduced as Benny’s first girlfriend in the video. Interesting how Halsey’s real name is Ashley Nicolette Frangipane, and ‘Halsey’ is also an anagram for Ashley. However, the music video shows a different character introduced as Ashley.
Watch “Eastside” Music Video by Benny Blanco, Halsey and Khalid
It is a bit disappointing that the music video does not show the story of Khalid. May be next time!
Lyrics Review and Song Meaning of “Eastside”
Benny Blanco reminisces a how his teenage relationship with Ashley started. They were friends from the days they used to play in the hands. Back then just holding hands with each other made them feel whole and alive. Fast forward a few years, they realize their affection for each other. They kiss.
It is refreshing to see a relationship springing out of an emotional connection rather than sexual appetite.
Khalid also goes on to say that Ashley’s father did not like Benny much. No father does, when they find out their teenage daughter has a boyfriend. Even back then, Benny was sure that she was the one for him. But the father had his doubts about him.
Despite their parent’s restrictions, Ashley and Benny used to see each other in the eastside of the city. Khalid calls it the ‘city where sun don’t set,’ which could be a reference to Virginia, where Benny was born and raised. However, Virginia, US is not phrased as a city where the sun does not set.
There are only a few parts of the world where the sun does not set, ever. The northernmost parts of Canada, Greenland, Finland, Norway and Sweden are to name a few.
The next lines of “Eastside” paint a sweet picture of how the couple would drive around the city, enjoying each others company.
In these lyrics of “Eastside,” Khalid sings about his proposal for this girl to run away with him. He assures that they can conquer anything if they set their minds to it. And he offers his love to her if she is willing to accept it.
Halsey joins in on the song and narrates her perspective of life and her relationship.
She talks about the perspective of life at the age 17 and 23, and how drastically it changes in between. At age 17, we dream of the perfect partner, the dream house, dream car and everything else between. However, fast forward to your twenties and everything gets quite serious all of a sudden. The partners come and go, dream house seems a distant reality and family seems bleak.
The kids who used to play together are rivals now-competing in life, jobs and relationships.
Halsey reminisces back to the teenage days when she fell in love and calms herself down.
This melodious tune ends with a throwback to their escapades when they were young-meeting on the Eastside of the town.
Did you enjoy this collaboration between Benny Blanco, Khalid and Halsey? Drop a comment below of what you think this song means.