Hold Me Down By Halsey: Lyrics Meaning And Interpretation

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Ashley Nicolette Frangipane, famously known as Halsey is a famous American singer, songwriter best known for her self released music on various online platforms. Halsey also collaborated with various famous artists like from the famous duo The Chainsmokers in their song ‘Closer’ to the famous Korean boy band BTS in their song ‘Boy with Luv’.

And about this specific song ‘Hold Me Down’, Halsey herself shared a backstory at a live show in 2015. She shared her experience where she met some mean old people who looked down upon her and made her feel like she knew nothing. There she met a person who was horrible towards her but somehow he was the one who inspired her to write this song.

She always also said that no matter what other people think of you you should always think highly of yourself. She added there would be people telling you that you aren’t worth it. But it is you who have to keep faith in yourself and not let these opinions hold you down.

What does the title mean

The title refers to the all negative forces that the artist thinks are holding her down. She suggests through her whole song not to be defeated by those forces and keep your head high. There will always be people who will doubt your worth but it is you who have to keep faith in yourself.

Hold me down lyrics meaning holds the fact that how Halsey fights against all her insecurities and chooses to believe in herself amidst all the negativity. She goes on to talk about the forces which helped her in the very process in her first verse.

Verse 1 – What does it mean

“My demons are begging me to open up my mouth

I need them mechanically make the words come out”

“They fight me, vigorous and angry, watch them pounce

Ignite me, licking up the flames they bring about”

Halsey feels that these demons are the sole energy who are making her speak. They are forcing her to stand up and raise her voice whenever it is required. She feels without them she will be completely muted. She feels that she needs them because they give her courage and force her to speak her mind when it is needed. These demons help her to be different from other people around her who always aim at putting her down. They just help her in having her own opinion in this cruel world.

It also may refer to her bipolar disorder in which her bad side helps her automatically release words at times when she feels angry and she feels like speaking her mind.

She is quite satisfied with the help of these demons. It is because when she doesn’t speak she feels powerless and doubts her abilities and that is something one shouldn’t do. Because no matter what other people think of you, you always should trust yourself. And if you don’t stand for yourself who would? ‘Flames’ might refer to the hells from where these demons have come. She thinks they intentionally encourage her to be angry to enjoy the destruction her anger causes.

Hold me down lyrics meaning holds its depth more in its pre-chorus.

What does the pre-chorus mean

“I sold my soul to a three-piece

And he told me I was holy

He’s got me down on both knees

But it’s the devil that’s tryna

Here ‘ three-piece’ refers to a man wearing a three-piece suit, probably that ‘asshole’ to whom she has sold her soul in exchange for something. It reminds us of the famous character of Dr. Faustus by Christopher Marlowe who sold his soul to the devil to gain knowledge. Although here, it is not the knowledge that she wants in return here. Anyway, that devil man shows dominance over her and tells her that she is holy as she prays to him. But she realizes that it is her who is taking herself down by being suppressed by him.

Hold me down lyrics meaning goes more in-depth in the chorus portion.

What does the chorus mean

“Hold me down, hold me down

Sneaking out the back door,

Make no sound

Knock me out, knock me out

Saying that I want more, this is what I live for

Hold me down, hold me down

Throw me in the deep end, watch me drown

Knock me out, knock me out

Saying that I want more, this is what I live for”

She is all torn up inside because of all these self-doubts. She is trying to escape from the demons by running away from the judgments and criticism by not opposing their opinions. Yet these demons are not ready to leave her as if ‘ she wants more, it’s not over yet.

Although these criticisms, judgments do tear her apart somehow she lowkey likes the fact that they see her differently and find her unique enough to point a finger at her. When she says ‘this is what I live for’ she depicts that she is not afraid of the criticism anymore. They are rather helping her to be more like herself and to stick to her point and personality. It motivates her not to change herself but to change the opinion of others by proving them wrong.

Hold me down lyrics meaning reveals how fearlessly Halsey tackles all the negativity and it’s beautifully portrayed by the lines in verse 2.

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Verse 2 – What does it mean

“Selfish, taking what I want and call it mine

I’m helpless, clinging to a little bit of spine

They rush me, telling me I’m running out of time

They shush me, walking me across a fragile line”

Having a little bit of courage within herself she chooses to believe in herself and fight back even though she is not all brave all the time, she does feel timid too. She also feels that she can’t get better or will not get the chance to explain herself.

Critics are continually telling her that she will not shine forever and with no time she will fade away like many understated artists. But again when she tries to speak up for herself, they shush her.

Hold me down lyrics meaning in its bridge again conveys the same meaning as it did in its chorus.

What does the bridge mean

“Hold me down now

Hold me down now

Hold me down”

These lines depict the same feeling as the chorus where Halsey tries to push herself from the negativity. She is trying to bring the best out of all the chaos and pushing herself to see the brighter side of all these criticisms.


As a person, it is not easy to write down your vulnerability or rather sing it out loud in front of a thousand people. It shows how fearless Halsey is as a human being and how strong a personality she carries within herself. This song helped her to put her words out in the world, and it is also going to help thousands of people who feel the same as her. It will help them to have faith in themselves and fill them at least with a tiny bit of courage within themselves.

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