Australian country artist Natalie Pearson offers the following synopsis for the video clip of the song “Strangers”, the third single off her album Long Time Coming: “For the music video, we wanted a very lonely, spacious feel, to represent the loneliness of the relationship. A girl, waiting for her man to come home, but he’s late for the hundredth time. And he’s gone again before she wakes up. It’s as if he was never there.”
Heartbreak, of course, is a staple of the country music genre. Bright and bubbly feel-good fare rarely satisfies as much as a three-Kleenex weeper. Adversity encountered in relationships will continue to fuel the flame of songwriting.
Perhaps the most intriguing thing about this song are the questions that are left unanswered. The narrator is left feeling as though she no longer knows her significant other. Did she ever? Was that all an illusion during the early stages of their courtship? The lyrics hint at a long-term relationship (long enough that they’ve chosen to marry or live together), yet the audience (like the narrator) is left wondering when the relationship shifted from domestic bliss to personal distance.
Is he cheating?
Facing addictive demons?
Having issues with work or family?
The audience (again like the narrator) can only guess. Listeners are left without a definitive resolution, facing the same impenetrable wall the keeps the estranged couple apart. In that way, “Strangers” is all too reflective of the type of situation people might encounter in their own lives.