Hold My Hand (Lady Gaga song)

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"Hold My Hand"
Lady Gaga - Hold My Hand.png
Single by Lady Gaga
from the album Top Gun: Maverick (Music from the Motion Picture)
ReleasedMay 3, 2022 (2022-05-03)
GenreArena rock
Length3:45
LabelInterscope
Songwriter(s)
Producer(s)
Lady Gaga singles chronology
"Love for Sale"
(2021)
"Hold My Hand"
(2022)
Music video
"Hold My Hand" on YouTube

"Hold My Hand" is a song by American singer Lady Gaga, released on May 3, 2022, through Interscope Records. It is the lead single to the soundtrack for the film Top Gun: Maverick (2022). The song was written and produced by Gaga and BloodPop as "a love letter to the world during and after a very hard time". Benjamin Rice received additional production credits.

Musically, "Hold My Hand" is a "hopeful" arena rock track, featuring an anthemic chorus and an electric guitar. Upon release, it received mostly positive reviews, with critics noting its inspiration derived from 1980s power ballads, the decade in which the original Top Gun was released. "Hold My Hand" has charted at number two in Croatia, number five in Hungary and Switzerland, number 10 in Wallonia, and the top 40 in thirteen additional countries.

Background and release

In April 2021, gossip website ShowBiz 411 reported that Lady Gaga would be involved with the soundtrack for Top Gun: Maverick.[1] The rumor spread to other publications, including W magazine.[2] In April 2022, Gaga began posting cryptic messages on Twitter, which fans interpreted as lyrics to the rumored song.[3][4] She formally announced "Hold My Hand" and its release date on April 27, 2022.[5][6] During the announcement, Gaga shared that she was working on the song for years, and "didn't even realize the multiple layers it spanned across the film's heart, my own psyche, and the nature of the world we've been living in" while writing it.[7] A preview of the song was released on April 30, followed by the release of the full track on May 3, as the first single from the soundtrack for Top Gun: Maverick.[5][8] A week after the release, "Hold My Hand" received airplay through adult contemporary and contemporary hit radio stations in the US.[9][10]

Several other artists were considered to contribute music for the film. Tyler Joseph, frontman of American alternative-rock music duo Twenty One Pilots, revealed in an interview that, "...I was working with the music placement person for the new Top Gun on writing a new song for them ... and then I believe Tom Cruise came in and just fired everyone."[11] Prior to the release of the film, Cruise described "Hold My Hand" as the missing piece in the film's puzzle: "Gaga came in with this song ... It became our score. It became the heartbeat of the film, what she did ... Emotionally, I was so concerned until I heard that piece. And I knew that that piece, what it does, how it married our story emotionally ... So that was a moment. That was a real moment for all of us."[12] In the movie, "Hold My Hand" plays during a bar scene when Penny (played by Jennifer Connelly) and her daughter are having a conversation, and later the full song is played near the end of the film with Penny and Maverick (Tom Cruise) flying off into the sunset in his P-51 Mustang.[13]

Music and lyrics

"Hold My Hand" was co-written by Gaga with the track's producer, BloodPop. Benjamin Rice received additional production credits.[14] It has been described by music and film critics as a "hopeful, anthemic" arena rock power ballad.[15][16][17] Jazz Tangcay of Variety called "Hold My Hand" a "soaring rock tune with violins and guitar licks that harken back to the power ballads of the '80s."[18] Its lyrics sees Gaga reassuring someone that she will always be there for them "without question."[15][19] Lars Brandle of Billboard noted that the song has a close lineage to Berlin's "Take My Breath Away" and Kenny Loggins' "Danger Zone", two tracks from the soundtrack of the original Top Gun film.[20] Music critics from other outlets compared "Hold My Hand" to songs such as "Open Arms" by Journey, "Alone" by Heart, and Gaga's own 2011 single, "The Edge of Glory".[21][22] The song was originally published in the key of G major and starts with G/D/C/G/D chord progression with three intro bars before singer starts to sing with the lyrics "Hold my hand, every thing will be okay, I heard from the heavens that clouds have been grey. Pull me close, wrap me in your arching arms".[23]

Critical reception

"Hold My Hand" received mostly positive reviews. Robin Murray of Clash called the song "a triumph of bombast" which "finds Lady Gaga cutting loose as a vocalist".[24] Stuart Heritage of The Guardian thought that the song is "bombastic and emotional, and includes everything you could possibly want from a Lady Gaga power ballad".[25] Variety's Jazz Tangcay found the song a "catchy earworm" with a "strong guitar solo", and argued that it is "on track to being an Oscar frontrunner in the original song race."[26] Nancy Tartaglione from Deadline Hollywood felt similarly, writing "it's another in Gaga's and the Top Gun canon that could go all the way to the Oscars".[27] Vulture, an online blog associated with New York opined that "Hold My Hand" is an "outlier in Gaga's catalogue" as "this is one of her only pop songs with zero subversive elements", while noting that "the song's sheer level of self-determination is quintessential Gaga. It feels like a sincere attempt to write the most inspiring end-credits ballad of all time."[28] Alexa Camp of Slant Magazine was more negative in her review, thinking that "for a song the artist claims she's been perfecting 'for years', 'Hold My Hand' struggles to take flight".[29]

Chart performance

Due to being released on a Tuesday, in its first week "Hold My Hand" did not enter the United States' Billboard Hot 100, but entered at number 17 on the Bubbling Under Hot 100 based off three days of tracking.[30] A week later it debuted at number 82 on the Billboard Hot 100. Following the theatrical release of Top Gun: Maverick, the song reached a new peak of number 49 in its fifth week on the chart.[31] Additionally, the song peaked at number 19 on the Billboard Mainstream Top 40 chart, number 13 on the Billboard Adult Pop Airplay chart, and number nine on the Billboard Adult Contemporary chart.[32][33][34] On the Billboard Global 200 chart, the song debuted at number 62 following its first full week of availability, and reached a peak in the top 40 at number 37.[35]

Internationally, the song entered at number six on the Canadian Digital Song Sales chart with just three days of tracking.[36] A week later the song debuted at number 38 on the Canadian Hot 100, marking her 25th top 40 entry on the chart. In its sixth week on the chart, the song reached a new peak of number 25.[37] The song debuted in the top 40 in Australia on the ARIA Singles Chart, making its entry at number 36, becoming her 30th top 40 entry there. In Australia, the song peaked at number 35 in its sixth week on the chart.[38] In New Zealand, the song debuted at number 33 on the Top 40 Singles Chart following the release of Top Gun: Maverick.[39]

Throughout Europe, the single fared better. "Hold My Hand" entered the UK Singles Chart at number 51, before falling to number 60 the following week. In its fourth week on the chart, following the theatrical release of Top Gun: Maverick, the song climbed to a new peak position of number 24.[40] The song debuted at number 63 on the Swiss Singles Top 75 chart in its first half week of release, but entered the top 20 the following week after a full week of availability, charting at number 13. In Switzerland, the song reached a peak of number five.[41] On Belgium's Wallonian Ultratop 50 Singles chart, the song reached a peak of number 10.[42] In the Netherlands, the song debuted at number 35 on the Dutch Top 40 chart and at number 26 on the country's Single Tip chart, on the latter of which it later peaked at number one.[43][44]

Music video

The accompanying music video was directed by Joseph Kosinski, director of Top Gun: Maverick, and it was released on May 6, 2022. It was partially shot in black and white. It pulls imagery from the 1986 Top Gun in nostalgic flashback form – at one point, the music video emotionally notes Tom Cruise as test pilot Maverick with Anthony Edwards' character, Nick "Goose" Bradshaw, holding him after the character tragically dies – as well as theatrical film edits from Top Gun: Maverick. The music video embodies Gaga in a theatrical performance, playing a grand piano on a military air-force runway and singing around an airplane hangar.[26][45]

During the video, Gaga is wearing the original aviation bomber jacket that Cruise wore as Maverick in the original Top Gun film. When the song hits its climax, Gaga switches the tank-top underneath the aviator bomber jacket for a nude gown that explodes off the singer and into the wind. The dress was created by Ukrainian designer, Lessja Verlingieri for her brand Lever Couture.[46]

Charts

Chart performance for "Hold My Hand"
Chart (2022) Peak
position
Argentina (Argentina Hot 100)[47] 72
Australia (ARIA)[38] 35
Austria (Ö3 Austria Top 40)[48] 39
Belgium (Ultratop 50 Flanders)[49] 20
Belgium (Ultratop 50 Wallonia)[42] 10
Canada (Canadian Hot 100)[37] 25
Canada AC (Billboard)[50] 8
Canada CHR/Top 40 (Billboard)[51] 36
Canada Hot AC (Billboard)[52] 19
Croatia (HRT)[53] 2
Czech Republic (Singles Digitál Top 100)[54] 55
France (SNEP)[55] 68
Germany (Official German Charts)[56] 79
Global 200 (Billboard)[35] 37
Hungary (Single Top 40)[57] 5
Iceland (Plötutíðindi)[58] 37
Ireland (IRMA)[59] 49
Italy (FIMI)[60] 57
Japan (Japan Hot 100)[61] 49
Latvia (EHR)[62] 39
Netherlands (Dutch Top 40)[43] 28
Netherlands (Single Top 100)[63] 82
New Zealand (Recorded Music NZ)[39] 33
Singapore (RIAS)[64] 29
Slovakia (Rádio Top 100)[65] 20
Slovakia (Singles Digitál Top 100)[66] 68
South Africa (RISA)[67] 36
South Korea Download (Gaon)[68] 135
Sweden (Sverigetopplistan)[69] 66
Switzerland (Schweizer Hitparade)[41] 5
Taiwan (Billboard)[70] 11
UK Singles (OCC)[40] 24
US Billboard Hot 100[31] 49
US Adult Contemporary (Billboard)[34] 9
US Adult Top 40 (Billboard)[33] 13
US Mainstream Top 40 (Billboard)[32] 19

Release history

Release dates and formats for "Hold My Hand"
Region Date Format(s) Label Ref.
Various May 3, 2022 Interscope [5]
Italy May 6, 2022 Radio airplay Universal [71]
United States May 9, 2022 Adult contemporary radio Interscope [9]
May 10, 2022 Contemporary hit radio [10]

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