“I don’t think fear and love can really co-exist,” Heather Bright once said. Her comment echoes a verse in the Bible, 1 John 4:18. “There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear.” It’s possible Bright knows this verse. An EDM star, she grew up the daughter of a pastor.
Heather Bright’s music scene, electronic dance music (EDM), is packed with talent. At a base level, all you need is a laptop, software, and a small MIDI keyboard. There are thousands of bedroom producers creating tracks. It’s a competitive scene. You need to bring new ideas.
An artist’s unique style is also important. In the world of EDM, you’ll find all kinds of creative hair colors, space-age outfits, and even helmets. (Deadmau5 and Daft Punk come to mind.)
Heather Bright would embody EDM’s best qualities. What put her on the map? Something intangible. It was a counter-counter cultural idea that real love should require sacrifice.
Heather Bright sang as a child in her father’s church. Later, she enrolled in the prestigious Berklee School of Music. She would break into the music industry by writing songs for Justin Bieber and Britney Spears. Despite this success, Bright had a goal to become a solo artist.
She went on to perform under the name Bright Lights. We have the Spotify algorithm to thank for recommending Bright Lights to us. In 2014, her breakout hit, “How You Love Me,” brought her to prominence as a solo artist. It was a collaboration with EDM producer 3LAU.
“How You Love Me” was a special song. It had everything an EDM hit needs. There was tight production, a dramatic sound, and a soaring melody. There was something else. To us, the reason the track stood out was because of what it said. It was the message of the lyrics.
Nobody’s perfect I’ll never try
But I promise I’m worth it if you just open up your eyesHow You Love Me
In this song, the singer isn’t offering the usual apology. Sorry, I screwed up. Instead, she’s issuing her partner a challenge. “You need to love me better, so what I did isn’t a big deal.”
Her response is, what solves our problem isn’t my apology. It’s your unconditional love.
This is a huge twist to the relationship song. This singer would normally beg for forgiveness!
Here, she’s demanding something pretty rare, understanding and acceptance. The singer is saying, basically, “if you love me, then these things should come with it.” Bright Lights flipped the I’m sorry script, turned the tables. What good is your love if it doesn’t naturally forgive?
I don’t need a second chanceHow You Love Me
I need a friend
Someone who’s gon’ stand by me right there till the end
If you’re half-listening to the song, it might slip by you. Since we’re writers around here, it struck us right away. In “How You Love Me,” Heather Bright nailed what’s missing in modern relationships. We rarely show unwavering loyalty toward those whom we say we love.
It goes back to Bright’s comment, “I don’t think fear and love can really co-exist.” If we think about it, the typical apology song comes with anxiety. “What if she/he doesn’t forgive me?”
Bright brings up love’s deeper promise (and responsibility). If we’re afraid in a relationship, then it’s not one based on love, whatever we may say. It’s about toeing a line. We expect this kind of relationship. We’re so used to it, it doesn’t occur to us there’s little love involved.
If you want the best of my heart, you’ve just gotta see the good in meHow You Love Me
For Bright, loving better means letting go of being right. She knows it’s not easy. There’s a cost. “Loving better” takes doing something unpopular, which is to sacrifice our own hurts.
It feels great to receive loyalty. When we need to give it? It’s bittersweet. Bright asks listeners to put aside their hurt and disappointment to strengthen the relationship. It isn’t fair, isn’t it?
Cause I could be the rain in your desert skyHow You Love Me
I could be the fire in your darkest night
I could be your curse or your angel
It’s all in how you love me
A listener with Bible knowledge will see a blueprint of Biblical love in Bright’s lyrics. Those perspectives are unique. It’s absolutely necessary to create an environment of security and acceptance. It costs something, as true love should. “Love is not easily angered. It keeps no record of wrongs.” When acceptance goes missing, it leads to more arguments, less trust.
Even though selfless love is what we all believe in, Heather Bright knows her message is unusual. “My perspectives are usually pretty unique and sometimes kinda ‘out there,’” she says. “So I love showing people a different way of looking at the same tough situation.”
When a song blows up, it’s always because of the little things. “How You Love Me” is a signature song for Bright Lights. There’s a lot going on beyond the track’s great EDM sound.
Bright’s take on love wasn’t a one-time thing. Her future songs would go on to celebrate rare, selfless love. “Heart of Steel,” “Down for Life,” and “Billion Dollar Love” are a few of these songs. A Bright Lights song marries fresh beats with a deeper, different take.
Heather Bright had everything it took to stand out. An emotive voice, strong songwriting skills, and a sense of visual style gave her a place in a competitive genre. What put her over the top was a song that asked more from the listener than it promised to give. EDM is awesome feel-good music. It doesn’t always feel good to love well, but it always matters.