Album: All I Ever Wanted
Kelly Clarkson lets her boyfriend down easy in the gentle “Already Gone.”
Contrite stings open the single, setting a softhearted tone. He shuts off the television and asks her what’s wrong. She hasn’t rambled on about work. He knows something is up. She gives him a sad smile. A conversation they had when they first began dating sticks out in her mind. She said she could see herself having kids. He agreed they would have to have at least two. However, looking back, to her it seems as though they were acting as though they wanted marriage and family together. She tells him it’s not true love. One of them would’ve left each other for someone else eventually. They could say how much they love each other over and over but it wouldn’t mean anything. (“Remember all the things we wanted/Now all our memories, they're haunted/We were always meant to say goodbye /Even our fists held high, yeah /Never would have worked out right, yeah/We were never meant for do or die.”)
In the pre-chorus, she adds she didn’t want them to become one of those who no longer talks. Tears begin to well up in his eyes. She pats him on the arm, telling him she’s not saying it to destroy him. She only wants to be honest with him. (“I didn't want us to burn out/I didn't come here to hurt you now/I can't stop.”)
In the chorus, she tells him they have been pretending for a long time. Someone has to be the mature one and admit the truth. She says he’s a wonderful guy who treated her well. However, he’s not the right one for her. She says he’ll meet someone who will love him with her whole heart. However, there is no changing her mind. She’s made the decision to leave. (“I want you to know/That it doesn't matter/Where we take this road/Someone's gotta go/And I want you to know/You couldn't have loved me better/But I want you to move on/So I'm already gone.”)
He folds his arms against his chest, his eyes puffy. She tells him their relationship was not ideal. They may have been a passionate start but it quickly turned cold. They argued a lot over petty issues. Sex could only solve their problems for so long. (“Looking at you makes it harder/But I know that you'll find another/That doesn't always make you wanna cry/Started with a perfect kiss/Then we could feel the poison set in/Perfect couldn't keep this love alive.”)
In the pre-chorus, she says she cares about him which is why she must break up with him. (“You know that I love you so/I love you enough to let you go.”)
The chorus is sung again.
In the bridge, he shakes his head at her. She continues to say that she can’t force her feelings for him. It wouldn’t be fair to either of them. (“I'm already gone/I'm already gone/You can't make it feel right/When you know that it's wrong /I'm already gone/Already gone/There's no moving on/So I'm already gone /Already gone, already gone, already gone/
Already gone, already gone, already gone.”)
Part of the first verse is sung again. (“Remember all the things we wanted/Now all our memories, they're haunted/We were always meant to say goodbye.”)
The chorus is sung again.
Part of the bridge is sung again to end the single. (“I'm already gone/I'm already gone/You can't make it feel right/When you know that it's wrong/I'm already gone/Already gone/There's no moving on/So I'm already gone.”)
Clarkson’s delicate vocals chooses her words with care. She knows he’s going to be upset. She has to get the point across that it’s not anything he did or that he’s the one to blame. Their relationship has run its course. It’s better she leaves now before they go any further and end up getting divorced, regretting what their lives could’ve been.
Usually, a breakup song with Clarkson involves someone’s head being bit off, chewed on with huge mouthfuls and spat out right in their face. With “Already Gone” she finally drops her defensive stance and explains her feelings in a somber conversation.
The composed “Already Gone” does the right thing and lets the argument go.