Sophie Pecora Breaks Down Every Track From Her Raise the Bar EP
At just 17, Sophie Pecora is an incredible singer-songwriter, poet and rapper who simply demands to be heard.
She first flew onto our radars last year after appearing on America's Got Talent and performing three of her incredible original songs. Since then, she's only become more skilled at her craft. Her debut EP, Raise the Bar, released on Nov. 20, featuring six original songs inspired by positivity and the notion that you're never truly alone.
We adore Sophie and her incredible talents, and we had the privilege of asking her to take a deep dive with us and tell us how these lovely anthems came to be. Keep reading for her track-by-track breakdown of each stunning song—plus her favorite lyric from each one!
1. 'No Service'
Sophie Pecora: I was thinking about how much our phones are a part of our life. We always have them with us and sometimes they distract us from truly being present with people in life. I originally just thought of the first line "We can connect better with no service" and wrote it down in my notes app on my phone. I wasn't thinking about writing a song with it at that point. It was just a little idea. A few months later I found it in my phone and decided to write a song around it.
For me, lyrics and melodies come at the same time for all of my songs. I just feel it and freestyle. I'm happy with how this song turned out, I think the cheerful melody displays what the meaning of the song is as well. It has a happy but also important message that people could have fun and dance to.
My favorite lyric in this song is the first line, "We can connect better with no service." It's a clever line, the way "connect" means two different things in the same sentence. It means connecting with people, but connect also means connecting to the internet, so the play on words brings the line together.
SP: When I wrote "Devil," I didn't have any idea of what I wanted to write about. I just chose some chords on my guitar and freestyled to see what I'd come up with. I don't know where it came from, but I thought of "Grow up sometime, you turned into a monster but you're in disguise." I could tell from that one line that the mood of the song would be about some kind of toxic relationship. It had a sassy tone to it, and I had never really written anything like that at the time, so it was fun to try something new.
This song is completely not my experience. Usually, my songs have at least a little of my own experiences blended into it, but this one was a fictional story. I knew that there are people out there who have experienced this story in some way, so I wrote it for them. I love to write about all different kinds of subjects and hardships even if I haven't experienced it myself because I know I can help somebody out there who has.
My favorite lyric in this song is "Never meant to hurt me? Heard that one too many times, thank you but I'm fine." This line shows how people can overcome challenges, and if somebody has not treated you like you deserve, you can let them go. In this story, the person is taking control of their life and they have gained the self-respect to walk away from this toxic person.
3. 'Use Me'
SP: I was thinking about how people get used, and it happens a lot, so I wanted to write a song about it for those people to hear and relate to. I really love how this song turned out because the lyrics tell a truthful story about someone's experience with being used and how they still want to stay with the person using them because they don't believe they deserve something better. I think this is something that many people can relate to.
My favorite line is "You won't get in the way of my life, I am better than this," because it is very uplifting and shows the internal strength the person has gained in this story. It has a happy ending, which I love.
4. '7th Grade'
SP: Bullying is something that so many people deal with, and a major place it happens is at school, so I wrote the song specifically about bullying experiences in school. This song is not a personal experience. Like most of my songs, I create stories about important subjects in hopes to write something people can relate to and therefore help them by making them realize they're not alone.
I have had my experiences with bullying when I was younger that I don't remember, but I'm sure some of the feelings I had are buried in my subconscious, which may have helped me describe the feelings. I'm really not completely sure where my lyrics come from. I surprise myself sometimes. "7th Grade" has helped a ton of people who are going through bullying or have dealt with it in the past. It makes me so happy because that's the whole reason I wrote the song.
My favorite line in the song is "I've heard the words, won't take them to my grave." It is very uplifting and gives a positive spin on the story.
SP: This one started similarly to "Devil," where I didn't have any thoughts before going into writing it, I just started freestyling and went with what I came up with. At first, I didn't know what the song really meant, but as I continued writing, the story developed more and more and became a conversation between someone and their true self that they had been hiding away because they didn't think they were good enough. They are trying to fit in with society's standards and losing themself in the process.
The "creep" described in the song is that person's true self that they have been trying to keep away in order to fit in better with society. It's also an analogy for the fact that your true self will always be with you, even if you've pushed it down for a long time. It's never too late to get back to yourself.
My favorite line from this song is "You don't belong here, I have changed, you wouldn't like the new me." This part is talking to their true self and saying that they have changed into someone they're not. They are also saying that the true self wouldn't like this change because it's hard to be who you really are. But you'll never feel genuinely happy and at peace if you are trying to be somebody you're not. There will always be a void in your heart where your true self is waiting to shine.
I started writing "Misfits" in seventh grade science class in my notebook. I continued writing the song slowly over a couple of months and as I progressed, the story slowly formed and it became about misfits.
There are so many people who feel like misfits and who feel like they don't belong. They compare themselves to others and it doesn't make us feel good. It is okay to be different. In fact, it is amazing to be different! I want to show people that you can turn your differences into superpowers by appreciating your uniqueness instead of looking at yourself negatively.
My favorite line of this song is "Misfits have some powers that are really pretty rad," because it says perfectly what the message of the song is. What is unique about us is what makes us special.
Click HERE to find Raise the Bar on Apple Music!
Love learning the stories behind your favorite tracks? Click HERE to check out our breakdown of Ginesse's latest EP, Somewhere to Die.