The Wichitan’s Song of the Week: “Glimpse of Us”


Joji’s hit single, “Glimpse of Us,” acts as the lead single for “Smithereens,” 2022. It peaked at #8 on the Billboad Hot 100 songs chart, largely in part to it going viral on TikTok. Photo courtesy of Warner Records.

Welcome back to this week’s edition of the Wichitan’s Song of the Week. In celebration of Asian-American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month, this week’s pick is “Glimpse of Us” by Japanese-born singer-songwriter Joji. Released June 10, 2022, as the lead single and a teaser and then re-released as the first track of his third studio album “SMITHEREENS,” “Glimpse of Us” is a song about being in love, losing that love and trying to find that same love in the next relationship. In the song, Joji sings about how his current relationship is the best thing but he still feels something lacking. He also sings about his first relationship and how toxic it was but how he misses her because she was the first person he has ever loved. Joji released the official music video for the song June 9, 2022 which featured very destructive, violent and dangerous scenes Joji said represented a very dark time in his life after the end of the aforementioned relationship. 

Born in Osaka, Japan, George Kusunoki Miller(ジョージ・楠木・ミラー or Jōji Kusunoki Mirā) most commonly known as Joji is a viral internet sensation and popular singer-songwriter best known for either his internet personality as Filthy Frank and Pink Guy and his virals youtube videos or his two viral songs, “SLOW DANCING IN THE DARK” which went viral on the popular social media app, TikTok and “Glimpse of Us” which earned him several award nominations. Growing up in the city of Kobe, Japan, Joji had an interest in music and at the young age of 18, Joji left Japan to move to the United States to pursue a career in music. While pursuing a degree at the New York Institute of Technology, Joji created the internet personalities “Filthy Frank” and “Pink Guy” as a means to promote his music but the account started to focus on more comedy-based content. In 2017, Joji announced that he would no longer be producing Filthy Frank content due to health reasons and would be shifting to more music-centered content. In 2018, Joji started releasing comic-based music still under the name Pink Guy and then after signing with 88rising, began releasing more serious music under the name “Joji.” Joji’s entire discography has always been heavily influenced by his passion for entertaining people and telling his life experience through song and “Glimpse of Us” is a prime example of his discographic style.

Joji currently is touring across six countries, 2023. Photo courtesy of Joji.

Joji currently is touring across six countries, 2023. Photo courtesy of Joji.

“Glimpse of Us” is my favorite song from the album and my favorite from Joji’s entire discography. In “Glimpse of Us” Joji sings about a time in his life when he was in a toxic relationship that ended. Joji narrates in detail all of the memories he experienced during the relationship. He also tells us how he is currently in a new relationship, a better one but feels that something is missing. He states that his current girlfriend is perfect and she cares about him but he doesn’t want to be in the relationship anymore because he misses his ex. He notes that every time he and his girlfriend are together, he reminisces about the former relationship and he wants to get back with his ex. “Glimpse of Us” is a song about being addicted to toxic love and toxic relationships.

As stated in previous editions of the Song of the Week, lyricism is an important aspect of any song and Joji  understood that when writing “Glimpse of Us.” In “Glimpse of Us,” Joji utilizes storytelling, metaphor and pathos to narrate a troubling and hard time in his life. My favorite lyric in the entire song is:

“Cause sometimes I look in her eyes, and that’s where I find a glimpse of us

And I try to fall for her touch, but I’m thinking of the way it was

Said, “I’m fine” and said, “I moved on”

I’m only here passing time in her arms

Hoping I’ll find a glimpse of us.”

Life experiences are a recurring theme in Joji’s discography. In “Glimpse of Us,” Joji gives an account of his experience with a relationship that wasn’t perfect but he has convinced himself that it was. He created a song about first loves and love lost. The song is a great listen with a powerful message.

Smithereens is Joji's third studio album, 2022. Released November 4, 2022, it contained nine songs, including "Glimpse of Us" and debuted at number 1 on Billboard's Alternative Albums chart. Photo courtesy of Warner Records.
Smithereens is Joji’s third studio album, 2022. Released November 4, 2022, it contained nine songs, including “Glimpse of Us” and debuted at number 1 on Billboard’s Alternative Albums chart. Photo courtesy of Warner Records.