Breaking up is hard to do, but heartache and pain are perennial, thematic gifts in country music that keep on giving. And “I Hate This” by rising artist and powerhouse vocalist Tenille Arts is one of those gifts. It’s a soaring ballad that offers a raw and real look inside the sorrow one feels after a relationship ends with a focus on the toxic hate everyone has to rid themselves of following a heartbreak.
“I wrote this song with Adam Wheeler,” Arts tells CMT.com. “We were talking about how you feel during a breakup or a break in a relationship and how you just hate the whole situation and usually want to move past that point in your life. You hate thinking about the fact that you have to stop thinking about that person and stop talking to them, and then you also hate thinking about the possibility of starting a new relationship. I have experienced this exact situation, and I really wanted to get the melody to match the feeling.”
The video accentuates the brokenness by filming Arts in a room where her world gets turned upside down. The Canada native performed all her own stunts in the Todd Cassetty-directed piece.
“I was a little scared when he said ‘You might have a few bruises after this,’” Arts admits, “but I’m so glad we stuck to the original plan. They built a giant box, and a set inside that turned on two axles with forklifts. The box rotated and tilted while I sang, and I walked and sat on the ceilings and walls.
“I remember feeling like the ground was still moving after we were done filming like I spent the day on a carnival ride. But it was honestly one of the most amazing experiences of my career so far.”
“I Hate This” is the first release from a forthcoming debut album. Get to know more of Arts in her own words below.
I have been writing music constantly and recording whenever I’m off the road and back in Nashville. I’m really excited about the new songs because they feel more honest and real than anything I’ve done before because I’m diving into my own life and my own story a lot more. I touch on a lot of different topics and emotions that I haven’t talked about in the past.
I was eight years old when a neighbor heard me singing in my backyard, and she told my mom that I had a great voice. My mom put me in voice lessons, and from that moment on, I knew that music was what I wanted to do for the rest of my life. I realized that my talent was unique when I was able to sing classic country songs and really make people feel something while I was singing.
All subjects are fair game to me. I realized a while ago that if I wasn’t being honest in my music, I wasn’t a true artist. So I try to relate to everything I write.
When others recognize themselves in my art, it really means a lot to me. Music is meant to make people laugh, cry, and help them through situations in life.. I think if you’re being honest, that will happen naturally. Everyone has things in life that they deal with and to connect with people on such a personal level is very rewarding musically and as a person.
The last musically sacred thing I’ve done was open for Reba McEntire. It was the biggest shows I had ever played. My mom and my grandma drove down from Canada for the show, and I got to meet and spend time with the queen of country music! It was one of those nights that made me realize that I am exactly where I am meant to be!
I’ve played a few interesting gigs with really bad sound systems and only a few people in the audience, but a couple years ago I played an outdoor festival, and during one of my songs there was a spider crawling up the microphone (I’m terrified of spiders.). A person in the audience jumped on stage to help me out! Now I’m worried about spiders at every outdoor gig I play.