One Call Away by Charlie Puth

Like most full-length albums, I don’t love every song on “Nine Track Mind”. However, there are some great songs on that album and “One Call Away” is one of them.Track: One Call Away
Album: Nine Track Mind
Artist: Charlie Puth
Genre: pop, soul
Music Rating: 8/10
Lyrics Rating: 5/10
Overall:
7/10
Sounds Like: A Great Big World, Rixton, Sam Smith
Interesting Fact: He has a scar on his right eyebrow from being bitten by a dog when he was two years old. A lot of his fans thought that he shaved it and started shaving part of their eyebrows to look like him. He was getting asked about it so frequently that he decided to post about it on social media and asked fans to “spread the word”.
Best thing About this Track: It is so catchy!
One thing I wish was different: The lyrics are a little too predictable for me. They feel like they’re not even trying to be well-written and, because I actually like the song, I find the unapologetic mediocrity somewhat irritating. (The music makes up for it though. Still love this track!)
Website: Charlie Puth

To me, this album is a mixed bag. Like most full-length albums, I don’t love every song on “Nine Track Mind”. However, there are some great songs on that album and “One Call Away” is one of them. If I had to describe this track in one word, it would be: “sweet”. It’s just a sweet little love song, and it’s not trying to be anything else.

Analytically, the lyrics really don’t have a lot going on. They’re not complicated or profound. That’s not what this song is. It’s not a groundbreaking declaration of eloquence meant to shock and amaze. It is a simple offer: an affirmation of love and support to be there for someone. The lyrics are a reassurance to the listener that they will never have to be alone. Through the struggles of everyday life, great and small, I will be there to help whenever you want me. “I’m only one call away.”

I think musically is really where this track shines. It opens up with vocals playing over simple, sustained piano chords, letting you really get the feel of the track musically. Already the chord progression gives your ears plenty to be interested in. At its core, this song (like almost every song ever written) is simply constructed around the most basic chordal relationship between the root and the fifth of the key, leaving little flourishes of other tones here and there to lead you to a resolution. The chorus is composed of four lines, each containing three chords: the root, the fifth, and one ever-changing complementary tone. In addition to the changing of the third chord, the three chords alternate order of appearance from line to line. In a beautiful parallel to the lyrics, two of the four lines of the chorus share a chord progression (the first and third line), but they are quite brilliantly not the same two lines which are composed of the same lyrics (the first and fourth line).

1st Line:  I   V  vi7
2nd Line: ii   I   V
3rd Line:  I   V  vi7
4th Line:  IV V  I

At this point, we reach an end of the first chorus and the guitar makes an appearance, signaling the start of the drum track as well (both of which serve to complement the piano and are not really there to carry the full weight of the song). The drums are immediately as refreshingly unexpected as the guitar is predictable. Going into the second chorus, the bass comes in giving the track an even fuller sound. The next thing to join in is an inconspicuous background vocal followed closely by a beautiful but brief string line in the second verse.

From here we start to get a little more of a gospel vibe to the track. Slowly building up from the introduction of the “oohs” and strings in the background until it comes to a head at an almost entirely a cappella section (which features some gorgeous harmonies) and finally crescendos when the piano comes back in full force with an eager kick drum in tow. Soaring through the final chorus before slowing down once more, we finally end back where this all started with a few simple piano chords underneath the ending vocals.

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Lyrics:
I’m only one call away
I’ll be there to save the day
Superman got nothing on me
I’m only one call away

Call me, baby, if you need a friend
I just want to give you love (come on, come on, come on)
Reaching out to you so take a chance
No matter where you go
Know you’re not alone

I’m only one call away
I’ll be there to save the day
Superman got nothing on me
I’m only one call away

Come along with me and don’t be scared
I just want to set you free (Come on, come on, come on)
You and me can make it anywhere
But for now, we can stay here for awhile
Cause you know I just want to see you smile
No matter where you go
You know you’re not alone

I’m only one call away
I’ll be there to save the day
Superman got nothing on me
I’m only one call away

And when you’re weak I’ll be strong
I’m gonna keep holding on
Now don’t you worry. It won’t be long darling
And when you feel like hope is gone
Just run into my arms

I’m only one call away
I’ll be there to save the day
Superman got nothing on me
I’m only one
I’m only one call away
I’ll be there to save the day
Superman got nothing on me
I’m only one call away
I’m only one call away

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