Putting together January’s Rare, Selena Gomez felt she’d hit all the right notes.
She had the killer opening single, the painfully raw “Lose You to Love Me” climbing to the top spot on the Billboard Hot 100 after she released it last October, the title track Billboard labeled as “a bewildering and brilliantly constructed piece of pop” and the empowering anthem, “Dance Again”.
She thought that maybe there was something missing, she just wasn’t sure what, she reflected during an April episode of New Music Daily with Zane Lowe. So she texted one of her co-songwriters Julia Michaels and “I said, ‘Well, it’s like I feel like I’ve covered everything on the album.’ I was like, ‘I don’t know. Life’s good. I want a boyfriend. That’s about it.’ And she’s like, ‘LOL, whatever.’ And I come in the studio and that’s literally the title.”
The resulting “Boyfriend” so encapsulated what she was feeling at that moment—that she by no means needed anyone in her life, but sometimes companionship can be nice. “It’s a lighthearted song about falling down and getting back up time and time again in love,” she explained to her 183 million Instagram followers, “but also knowing that you don’t need anyone other than yourself to be happy.”