Good as Hell

Lizzo and Eric Frederic (also known as Ricky Reed), 2016

What major events in the African American community paralleled Lizzo’s rise as a pop music star?

The line “if he don’t love you anymore, then walk your fine ass out the door” suggests that this song is about relationships. But can the relationships be taken as representing bigger things? What might this line be heard as a metaphor for?

What message do the lyrics send about self-image and self-care?

Although the song is not explicitly political, how might its lyrics be heard as resonating with the Black Lives Matter movement?

"Good as Hell" performed by Lizzo on Cuz I Love You, Nice Life Recording Company and Atlantic Recording Corporation, © 2019.

Rights have not been secured to reprint the words for this song. Please consult the following online resource for lyrics:

Replace first sentence with this: Melissa Viviane Jefferson, known by her stage name Lizzo, was born in Detroit and 1988 and raised in Houston. In 2011 she moved to Minneapolis, where she became a mainstay of the local music scene and earned the attention of Prince, who lived in the city until his death in 2016. She released her first album, Lizzobangers, in 2013. Her popularity exploded following the release of her 2016 album, Coconut Oil, her first release with Atlantic Records.


As in many of her songs, Lizzo proudly embraces her identity as a large Black woman in “Good as Hell.” In a subversion of stereotypes, she projects her image as a source of strength. As such, her music aligns with different currents of the 2010s and 2020s, including body positivity, self-care, and the Black Lives Matter movement.

To date, most of Lizzo’s music is not overtly linked to contemporary controversies surrounding police killings of African Americans and systemic racism. Instead, her lyrics make vague but powerful references—such as “tired of the bullshit” in “Good as Hell”—that could be interpreted in different ways, including but not limited to as commenting on the issues protested by Black Lives Matter activists. In addition to encouraging listeners to “go on dust your shoulders off, keep it moving,” her messages of positivity and strength undoubtedly resonate with the frequent assertion that Black lives matter.



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