“It wasn’t really any sort of inspiration other than, ‘all right, let have fun,'” Selena Gomez explains at the beginning of her deep-dive into the making of the Rare song “Boyfriend” in the latest Beats by Dre series Beat x Beat: Inside Out.
Joined by two of the song’s co-writers, Justin Tranter and Julia Michaels, and producers The Roommates — via FaceTime, of course — Gomez describes Michaels asking her what mood she was going for that day.
Gomez’s response was simple, and brutally honest: “I don’t know, I want a boyfriend.” Tranter says that text message lit a spark and the song just started rolling out, with Selena describing the vibe they were going after as simple, but definitely with a head-bopping beat. Tranter was going for “minimal, cool and sexy” on the choruses, which they all agreed should be easy and “conversational.”
The Roommates crew sent over a bouncing bassline that inspired the chorus from Michaels, “I want a boyfriend/ But I keep hitting dead ends.”
The video also includes some behind-the-scenes pics from the studio session, such as Tranter doing a quarantine dog walk with his mom and Gomez explaining that she was clear she didn’t want it to seem like she *needed* a boyfriend, but just that she wanted one.
Luckily, the video for the track was shot a week before quarantine, at which point Selena worried that maybe the message was possibly off at a time when people were about to be locked down during the COVID-19 pandemic. In the end, though, she feels like “it brought a lot of people joy.”
Check out the breakdown below.