Kelly Clarkson “Breakaway” Lyrics Meaning [Explained]

Kelly Clarkson’s song “Breakaway” is an empowering anthem that resonates with many listeners. Released in 2004, the song became a hit and has since inspired individuals to embrace their dreams, overcome obstacles, and find their true selves.

In this article, we will delve into the meaning behind the lyrics of “Breakaway,” exploring its themes of self-discovery, longing for change, and the importance of staying true to one’s roots.

Lyrics Interpretation

Before we delve into the story behind this song, let’s take a closer look at each verse of the lyrics.

Verse 1: The Desire for Change

“Grew up in a small town and when the rain would fall down

I’d just stare out my window

Dreaming of what could be and if I’d end up happy

I would pray (I would pray)”

In the opening verse, Clarkson sets the scene with an image of a small town, symbolizing a confined, predictable environment. The recurring rain becomes a metaphor for stagnation or melancholy. She contemplates what her future holds and whether she’d end up happy, illustrating the quintessential human pondering about their destiny.

Chorus: Spreading Wings and Taking Risks

“I’ll spread my wings and I’ll learn how to fly

I’ll do what it takes ’til I touch the sky

And I’ll make a wish, take a chance, make a change and breakaway”

In the chorus, Clarkson expresses her determination to grow (“spread my wings”), learn (“learn how to fly”), and be persistent (“do what it takes ’til I touch the sky”). The term “breakaway” signals a strong desire to break free from limitations, take chances, and catalyze personal growth.

Verse 2: The Adventure Beyond

“Wanna feel the warm breeze, sleep under a palm tree

Feel the rush of the ocean

Get onboard a fast train, travel on a jet plane, far away and breakaway”

Here, Clarkson conveys her yearning for exploration, freedom, and adventure. She’s drawn to the sensations and experiences that a broader world offers, embodied in vivid images like a warm breeze, a palm tree, the ocean’s rush, a fast train, and a jet plane. These symbols denote an eagerness to escape monotony, embrace novel experiences, and journey toward the unknown.

Bridge: Stepping into the Unknown

“Buildings with a hundred floors, swinging around revolving doors

Maybe I don’t know where they’ll take me but

Gotta keep moving on, moving on, fly away, breakaway”

Clarkson’s lyrics personify the uncertainty and excitement of stepping into the unknown – a life filled with ‘buildings with a hundred floors’ and ‘revolving doors’. She admits the uncertainty that lies ahead but commits to moving forward. The repeated use of ‘breakaway’ reinforces her resolve to embrace change and forge her own path.

Final Verse: Coming Full Circle

“Out of the darkness and into the sun

But I won’t forget the place I come from

I gotta take a risk, take a chance, make a change and breakaway”

The song concludes by coming full circle. Clarkson acknowledges the importance of her roots, indicating that while she’s committed to growth and change, she won’t forget where she came from. This balance between valuing the past and being open to the future makes “Breakaway” a compelling anthem for personal growth and self-discovery.

True Meaning Behind “Breakaway”

It might surprise you to know that Avril Lavigne, together with the professional songwriters Matthew Gerrard and B. Beneate, penned the song. Originally, it was meant for Avril’s second album, “Under My Skin,” but it didn’t really vibe with the rest of the tracks. So, she passed it on to Clarkson, who rocked it as a single. The song was such a hit that Clarkson even named her second album after it and included the song on the album.

“Breakaway” is all about shaking off the dust of an old life and embracing the new. Some folks might call it a song about growing up, but it’s more about leaving your past behind and evolving into a better version of yourself. This theme resonated with Clarkson, who saw herself in the lyrics.

Remember “The Princess Diaries 2”? Yep, “Breakaway” was in there, too. And Gerrard spilled some beans about how the song came about, saying that it was initially inspired by Avril, but when it didn’t fit her album, they pitched it to Clarkson. Worked out pretty well, if you ask me.

Clarkson herself calls “Breakaway” the anthem for everyone who’s striking out on their own. She relates it to her own move from a small town in Texas to the big, scary city of Los Angeles, where she went against all odds and became a superstar.

At first, Avril wasn’t too hot on the song. She thought it felt like a church song and that it wasn’t pop-punk enough for her. However, she’s grown to like it more over time, even adding it to her 2019 tour setlist. She even performed it live for the first time at a concert in Oakland, California, in September 2019.

Avril loves what Clarkson did with the song, praising her for her powerful and beautiful voice and her insane range. In Avril’s own words, Clarkson took the song to the next level and owned it, which is pretty cool, don’t you think?


From a reject of Avril Lavigne’s album to a blockbuster hit that even Lavigne herself came to appreciate, this song is definitely a testament to the transformative power of music. And, of course, it’s an anthem for anyone who’s ever dreamed of breaking away and soaring to new heights.

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