The Nickelodeon-actress-turned-pop-star Ariana Grande released her debut album “Yours Truly” last year. While this album cultivated nostalgia of 1990s R&B, much like Mariah Carey and Mary J. Blige, it still maintained an idea of innocence that kept her tethered to her child-star career. Despite being a debut album, the work seemed distant and failed to familiarize the audience with the girl outside of the Nickelodeon franchise. After the cancellation of her television show, “Sam and Cat,” and the feud between she and her co-star ,Jenette McCurdy, it seemed obvious Grande was ready to start fresh. Her 2014 album, “My Everything,” does just that. Her audience finally gets to see Grande as the pop star she is, while also glancing into her normally private life track by track. Her good girl image is shed, and Grande is in control of her own artistic direction.
This direction can be seen throughout the album, especially in the artists with whom Grande chooses to collaborate. “Problem,” the first track of the album, is clearly Ariana’s biggest success, featuring another chart topper, Iggy Azalea. This magical duo gets the album off to a great start and shows that, despite Grande’s age, she is a force to be reckoned with who has enough star power to keep up with other ladies of the pop industry. That message is later reasserted by another hit, “Bang Bang,” featuring two other iconic performers, Jesse J and Nicki Minaj.
Other highlights of her album include “Break Your Heart Right Back” and “Best Mistake.” The former features the talented rapper, Childish Gambino, and incorporates the famous sampling of Dianna Ross’ “I’m Coming Out.” It tells a smooth and gorgeous tale of revenge between two lovers, and brings a sense of girl power with which everyone can sing along. The latter, “Best Mistake” has gotten much attention because it features Big Sean, Ariana Grande’s newest flame. The song explains the couple that everyone knows, the one that should have broken up a long time ago but is still holding on because they truly love one another. Both tales and collaborations show Grande in a much more adult light, and she keeps asserting that image through other songs such as “Love Me Harder” and “Hands on Me.”