Ethan Bortnick Gets the Worst Birthday Gift You Could Wish For in "happy f***ing birthday"


Singer-songwriter and producer Ethan Bortnick continues to make listeners collectively cry with the release of his latest single, "happy f***ing birthday." The single is a bitter lullaby wrapped in a blend of meticulous production and an intricate, anguish-filled piano arrangement, detailing the complicated emotions that can arise as you watch someone you love fall in love with someone else.

"happy f***ing birthday" opens with a lilting piano riff mixed in with faded audio of people singing happy birthday. As the instrumentation solidifies into an entity filled with dynamic layers of distortion and effects, Bortnick openly shares his experience of being unwanted by the person he loves. He laments over his heartbreak and the sadness, bitterness, and confusion that comes with watching the only thing he desires fall into someone else's arms. His warm but melancholic vocals sing in the second verse, "Pictured you'd be standing here / But you brought my greatest fear / Sing me 'Happy birthday' while you hold his hand."

The accompanying music video, directed by Mallika Chandaria, is a visual brimming with nostalgia. The vulnerable and bittersweet lyrics juxtapose home video footage provided by Bortnick's family, showing various joyful scenes from his childhood birthday parties. The visual then shows clips of present-day Bortnick isolated and singing alone on the floor of his living room or a whimsically colorful set, crying, surrounded by what looks to be a birthday party with no guests.

Watch the "happy f***ing birthday" video below:


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