This St. Louis Native's Breakup Song About Student Loan Debt Is an Anthem for Our Time



Boys? So last year. Krystal Metcalfe — a soul singer raised in St. Louis and now based in Chicago — is singing the blues for something much more of the moment: student loan debt.

Metcalfe's "Sallie" won critical acclaim this summer for Metcalfe's gorgeous vocals — and that timely topic.
And you tell me you'll give me time
But I don't want to spend my life
Indebted to you.
And you call me almost every night
There's no running, and I can't hide.
No no no no!
The beauty of the song is that much of it could be a song rejecting any abusive lover — but it just happens to be about Sallie Mae, the federally backed servicer of countless student loans. "And I hate you, for how you jacked up my credit," Metcalfe sings near the end — but with her rollicking delivery, even that sounds vaguely torchy.

At a performance in May at Sofar Chicago, Metcalfe dedicated the tune to "anyone who goes to a gas station, and you've got to stop on like $4.78 on pump 10, because you're like, 'I don't know if this is going to overdraft or not.' Some time it be like that, OK? So if you have any of those problems like I have, this is your jam."

Metcalfe opens for Nick Waterhouse at Blueberry Hill tomorrow night. The show starts at 8 p.m. and you might want to get there right on time. Because really — this is our jam, too.

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