Jake Germain is the next big thing: A breakdown of his singles era.

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Jake Germain

Jake Germain as he appears in an early 2019 press photoshoot.

Mason Montano, Music Editor

Known for his Queer heartbreak anthems and extensive use of autotune for vocal effect, American singer-songwriter and producer Jake Germain’s career began when he uploaded his debut single, “Lonely Nights”, to SoundCloud in September 2016. 

He later gained some notoriety on the underground pop music scene in June 2018 for his covers of English singer-songwriter Charli XCX’s (sadly still) unreleased songs “Taxi” and “Party 4 U” before releasing his debut EP, Lonely Nights, that November.

Up until that point, Germain had been an independent artist, writing and producing music entirely on his own, but that all changed when his non-album single “Champagne” caught the attention of Chicago-based independent record label and collective Palettes, who signed him in late 2018. 

His first release through the label came in December of that year when he appeared as the featured artist on American singer-songwriter and producer BOY SIM’s scandalous single “Peach Emoji”, and throughout 2019, Germain continued his rise to stardom with a series of standalone singles.

“Cavity”: Germain dropped “Cavity” in January 2019 as his debut solo release through Palettes. It’s a hyper pop-inspired bop about cybersex that’s very much in line with the lyrical content of “Dial Tone” — the breakout hit single from American singer-songwriter That Kid, who appears as the guest vocalist and delivers a sticky sweet verse with a feminine tone that compliments Germain’s more masculine presence. 

“Cavity” also marked a major milestone in his career, as it was his first song to surpass 10,000 streams on Spotify, launching him into the eye of the underground pop music scene alongside “Peach Emoji”, and it currently has almost 75,000 streams.

“Bounce”: Continuing the hyper pop style of “Cavity”, “Bounce” was released later in January 2019. The metallic banger contains lyrics overflowing with references to cars and driving that act as sexual innuendos, with industrial electronic production that’s reminiscent of Charli XCX’s controversial 2016 track, “Vroom Vroom”, and despite not achieving the same success as its predecessor, “Bounce” is a fun follow-up to “Cavity” that appealed to the underground pop community and further established Germain’s growing presence on the scene.

“Killing Me”: The most personal song from the era, “Killing Me” was released in February 2019 as the sequel to “Champagne”. It’s a heartbreaking and extremely emotional track about longing for a past lover, and at the same time, hating oneself for it.

The outro features a haunting vocal performance from Germain as he screams the words, “And it’s killing me”, over and over again in a cacophony of anguish exemplified by vocal distortion, and he mentioned via Twitter that it was the hardest single to record. 

“Over U”: After a short break, Germain returned in April 2019 with the next single, “Over U” — an electro pop banger about moving on from a difficult break-up that serves as the resolution to the “Champagne” / “Killing Me” storyline. The track was highly anticipated upon its release and quickly surpassed 100,000 streams on Spotify, dethroning “Cavity” and becoming Germain’s biggest song to date.

“Over U” is also widely considered to be his breakout single, as it earned him notable mainstream recognition and acclaim from the likes of Billboard and Paper Magazine, and currently has over 200,000 streams.

“Dead to Me”: “Dead to Me” followed-up “Over U” in May 2019. It’s a darker, more aggressive track in comparison to the previous singles, with lyrics centered around anger and resentment toward an ex, and Germain showcases his vocal range and production skills throughout the song — demonstrating both his talent and how men ain’t s**t.

“JAKE”: Released in June 2019, the self-titled “JAKE” is a stark departure from the pop nature of his previous singles with a more trap and hip-hop-inspired sound. The track is about flexing one’s wealth, success, and superiority and features a sharp, spicy verse from Dallas-based Queer hip-hop duo F*Gedelics. 

On the chorus, Germain sarcastically asks the listener if they “wanna kick it with Jake”, even though no one’s allowed to “kick it with Jake” on account of the fact that he’s way too iconic to associate with just anyone, and one can only dream to achieve the status needed to be able to “kick it with Jake”.

“Heart in 2”: Following a brief hiatus due to personal conflicts, Germain dropped the highly anticipated “Heart in 2” in November 2019. It’s a pop rock-inspired invitation for someone to come and break his heart and the final single according to a late February Instagram livestream, officially bringing the era to a close with seven flawless singles.

‘JG1’:

Jake Germain has time and time again delivered Queer pop perfection and is currently gearing up for his next era. His debut full-length project, dubbed “JG1”, is expected to arrive later this spring, and the lead single, “Compares to U”, is slated for release on March 20, so be sure to pre-order the song, and stream “JG1” when it drops because Jake Germain is the next big thing.

Stream Jake Germain’s music on Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/artist/2nPQs4MtVKwcVLqUjasYBV?si=Ridd9u-HQYywlX-zUrhsDg 

Jake Germain as he appears in an early 2019 press photoshoot.