Daily Discovery: vaultboy Marries Humor & Loneliness With “everything sucks”

“Life absolutely sucks sometimes, but there’s always little things you can look at that can remind you to keep your head up,” says Tik Tok star vaultboy.

Videos by American Songwriter

His debut single, “everything sucks” (co-written with gnash), which began as a 30-second clip, brings a bit of sardonic humor to the topic of mental health. Everything sucks, just kidding / Everything is great, no really / I haven’t thought about my ex today / Oh, wait (f***, I just did), he sings. But I went outside for the first time / In a few days and it felt nice / And I might try doing exercise (Haha, not really).

“When I was asked by a fan to make a happy song for a change, I took that a bit sarcastically,” he tells American Songwriter, “and wrote the words, ‘everything sucks, just kidding.’ The TikTok went viral and people seemed to love it, so I finished it. There’s a chorus at the very end where a bunch of group vocals come in. For some reason, it makes me feel really nostalgic, and I hope it makes other people feel that way, too.”

I wanna forget my bad days, all my bad days / And be okay, and be okay, he later sings on the chorus. Spend my spare change down at the arcade.

Hailing from Jacksonville, Florida, the pop singer-songwriter draws upon such influences as Dawes, Lauv, Charlie Puth, Jon Bellion, and Jason Isbell. In his work, which includes co-writing Sarah Barrios and Eric Nam’s “Have We Met Before,” he frequently writes best when “I’m feeling emotionally stimulated or inspired─whether that’s super happy or super sad,” he says.

The accompanying visual, directed by Rozu Creative, seems to capture both collective unease during lockdown and those dream-like trances in which many find themselves. He drifts from his apartment to an arcade, seemingly escaping the cloudy mental anguish buried within four walls.

In his Tik Tok career to-date, He has amassed 757,000 followers and millions of views across his video clips. When he first posted a sample of “everything sucks,” it quickly notched 50,000 user-generated responses. “It’s crazy to me how a song I wrote in my bedroom about looking on the bright side has connected to so many people all over the world. We’re all so similar in that way; we’re just looking for a reason to smile and be okay.”

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