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Meaning of the song ‘Ballad of a Badman’ by ‘Tory Lanez’

Released: 2021

“Ballad of a Badman” by Tory Lanez is a smooth, sultry ode to an intense romantic connection. Laced with yearning and desire, the song captures the artist’s struggle to balance his feelings with the reality of a complex relationship, culminating in an emotive roller-coaster ride.

The opening lines, “Ooh, you got me”, reveal the singer’s lack of resistance to his lover’s allure. The repetition gives it an affective depth, underlining just how ensnared he is. Lanez communicates his longing for his love to stay with him longer, implying that their time together always leaves him wanting more. “The longer you stay, the better the time,” he croons, clearly infatuated.

“You listen to your friends, they lie,” he sings, suggesting there’s a narrative about him circulating amongst her friends that he disputes. This could be a nod to the classic hip-hop motif of haters trying to undermine success or relationships, or perhaps a reference to his own reputation as the “badman”.

In the chorus, “Don’t you stop turning me on”, Lanez connects the physical desire with an emotional craving. His repeated call, “I wanna feel like this all night long,” amplifies his wish to extend this intoxicating feeling indefinitely. His vulnerability echoes through the words, “I don’t mind, I know you’re mine” and “lovin’ you long takes the pain away,” exposing a softer side to this badman, someone truly smitten, not just physically attracted.

His admission, “It’s just, I can’t fight this feeling” in the bridge section recognizes the power of his emotions. Lanez’s eloquent articulation of his internal struggle demonstrates his honesty and humanity, alluding to the universal experience of love’s complexities. Behind the ‘badman’ façade, we see a lover grappling with his feelings, unable to resist his feelings, as expressed in his plea, “Don’t fight this feeling.”

Overall, “Ballad of a Badman” delves into Lanez’s relationship trials and tribulations. The song paints a vivid picture of love’s dual nature, reflecting the friction between passion and doubt, intimacy and autonomy—capturing the paradoxical essence of the human heart.

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