Hottest Songs – October 2019 – Pt.34

Wale Finds Empathy Through Suffering On The 6LACK-Assisted “Expectations”


Wale delicately deals with mental health.

Wale has been very vocal about his mental health struggles in the past and he’s been praised for doing so. The press run for his new album, Wow… That’s Crazy, just started, but the topic has already come up several times. On both “The Breakfast Club” and “Ebro in the Morning”, Wale spoke about depression and anxiety, but he emphasized that his aversion to these conditions being labelled as ‘mental illness.’ He fears that, due to overuse, the term has become conflated with experiences that he feels shouldn’t necessarily fall under that umbrella.

Regardless of how Wale prefers to think or speak about the topic, he manages to address it in his songs without the heaviness and reality of these experiences being diluted. On “Expectations,” he breaks down the harmful thought processes that can arise as the seasons change. The first verse paints a picture of the depression that comes with the greyness of winter. He then looks outward, shifting to the pressures that can weigh on a woman due to the fabricated perfection of social media posts. These thoughts coming from a man’s perspective could have inadvertently assumed a patronizing tone, but Wale reflects on these issues with great care and empathy.

Quotable Lyrics

Guess entertainment business yin and the yang
Wait, I’m not the same, I can’t find no peace
I sacrifice my world to a world that ignore me
Black man in therapy, ’cause white terror don’t sleep

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