A Q&A With the Heart Toppers Song Contest Promotion Winner, Sade Frame

“Dating Isn’t Fun” 
By Sade Frame
Interview by American Songwriter

Sade Frame is the American Songwriter Heart Toppers Song Contest Promotion winner for her song “Dating Isn’t Fun.” American Songwriter caught up with Sade to get the story behind her song. 

How long have you been songwriting? 

I have been songwriting for six years! I started off doing musical theater, but after the pandemic hit, I turned to writing in order to cope. I absolutely fell in love with it, and now I have 420 completed songs and counting! The studio is the place where I feel the most myself, and songwriting is where I feel safest expressing my emotions. 

Why did you enter American Songwriter’s Song Contest? 

I thought the opportunity looked amazing and I wanted to know what I could improve on when it came to my writing and recording. Through “Dating Isn’t Fun”, I had a story to tell, and I hoped it could reach people who relate. 

What was the inspiration behind your song, “Dating Isn’t Fun”?

I was sixteen years old and had just gotten off the phone with a boy I was dating. He had just told me the only reason he was with me was for the way I looked. I remember feeling so much pain and anger in that moment, and the song kind of just fell into my head. 30 minutes later, the lyrics were completed (and the guy was blocked). I feel like dating in this generation is so difficult because social media has created so much emphasis on physical appearance that sometimes we fail to look deeper into people’s hearts and personalities. As I grew older, I found the right people and learned to surround myself with those who truly love me for me, but there was a brief time in my life where I was like, “Is my body the only thing people see? Is he nice to me because he likes me, or because he just wants to gain something?” No fifteen or sixteen-year-old should be thinking that. This song portrays my frustration towards that stigma. 

Who are your all-time favorite songwriters and why? 

My all time favorite songwriters are Tate McRae and Julia Michaels. I draw a ton of inspiration from their stuff. I love how versatile they are. I think one of the factors that make a well-done song is the authenticity, and everything they write sounds like it’s coming from a genuine place straight from the heart. 

Are you planning on releasing any new music anytime soon? 

There’s so many songs I aspire to release it’s hard to keep up with! I am currently working with my management team, DAS Communications, on creating a project that will include “Dating Isn’t Fun”. All the updates will be on Instagram and Tiktok @sadeframe.

What would you tell other artists who are considering entering the contest?

Don’t write or record anything with the intention of “I’m gonna write a hit today” or “I have to beat everyone else.” Listeners can subconsciously tell when you’re not being authentic. I have never once created a really solid track with that mindset. Through your music, show them who YOU are. What is the story you want to tell? What do you think people should hear today? What’s in your heart? Write when you feel the inspiration coming, and don’t hold back. The best song ideas often come when you’re not forcing yourself to sit and write. So just be yourself and people will listen! 

Listen to the winning song below:

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