This song is about getting over an ex, hoping to find another who can bring back those feelings that made it so special. At a 2017 concert in Brisbane, Adele talked about the feeling that inspired this song. "I was trying to remember how it was I felt at the beginning of a relationship," she said. "Because as bad as a break up can be, as bitter and horrible and messy as it can be, that feeling when you first fall for someone is the best feeling on earth, and I am addicted to that feeling." Adele took up with her partner Simon Konecki not long after she wrote the song - the couple had a child in 2012. "Obviously I can't go through with those feelings because I'm married now," Adele added. "I've found my next person."
Adele had boundless resources at her disposal, but all this song needed was two people, two days, and a studio with a grand piano. She wrote and recorded it at Harmony Studios in Los Angeles with Dan Wilson of the band Semisonic, whose co-writing credits include "<a href="https://www.songfacts.com/facts/dixie-chicks/not-ready-to-make-nice">Not Ready To Make Nice</a>" with Dixie Chicks and "<a href="https://www.songfacts.com/facts/josh-groban/hidden-away">Hidden Away</a>" with Josh Groban. The demo they recorded at the end of their second day (with Wilson on piano) ended up being so good that Adele decided to use it as the actual recording. She tried recording it with a band and a full orchestra, but couldn't beat that demo. In a Songfacts <a href="https://www.songfacts.com/blog/interviews/dan-wilson" target="_blank">interview with Dan Wilson</a>, he said: "I had a small case of demo-itis about the version that Adele and I had done. But I honestly thought about my version with Adele as a demo and I never entertained the idea that it was going to be on the record. I was just hoping for the best possible more-fleshed-out version." What's "demo-itis"? Wilson defines it as, "The general fact that you're always going to like the first version of a song you hear best."
Adele and Dan Wilson didn't know each other when they got together to write this song - it was the album's co-producer Rick Rubin who paired them up. She copped to knowing little about his work, but told him her mum was a big fan. (When Wilson wrote a song with Carol King - "One True Love" - on the 2001 Semisonic album <b>All About Chemistry</b> - he told her his mom was a big fan. "Thank you for making me feel old," she replied.) Before they got down to business, Wilson and Adele spent about 45 minutes getting to know each other and watching YouTube videos of rockabilly queen Wanda Jackson, which got them out of the present and into a mindset of a different era when songs were more enduring.
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