Lineage, we have all heard the word before, descends from somewhere, came from a predecessor. Most songs exist within a lineage. There have been others framing similar social justice issues and or protesting the same ideas. With this lineage, I will be exploring other songs that are a part of the “Skinny” lineage. Skinny came out on August 20th, 2023, can’t get much more recent than this. It also became a viral TikTok clip and has already impacted so many lives. Other songs surrounding eating disorders and body image came before this one, were just as needed, and inspired new outlooks on ED. This lineage starts in 1999, with the first real song about a personal battle over eating disorders and body image. In Silverchair – Ana’s Song (Open Fire), This song released by Silverchair, was written by and is about lead vocalist Daniel Johns. Through the song, he reveals he has struggled with ED. 

This song appeared at No. 12 on the US Billboard Modern Rock Tracks chart, as well as No. 14 on the Australia singles chart. This song was a way for modern rock and modernized music, a popular band, to express a personal battle. Hey, I am going through this. Daniel Johns went to therapy and tried medication however music is what made him feel better. Music and releasing this song actually helped him to overcome the disease. Music is a timeless tool of unity and overcoming.  He displayed the open fire, that was consuming his life. A tough personal battle, but so many others were going through this and can relate to an ‘open fire in their life.’

This was the first song about a personal battle with Ed and it became a hit, opening up discussion that Males also struggle with Anerixa and that many struggle through this, even famous talented musicians. Goes into conversation, this is a real issue.  Sparks conversation, and shows vulnerability, yet unity.

Silverchair – Ana’s Song (Open Fire) (Official Video). This video is also similar to how Emmy performed hers. Raw emotion, tone, and lighting, all make you feel this song even deeper.


The next part of this lineage comes in 2015. From a song called “Scars to your Beautiful.” 

This is a beautiful yet haunting song by Alessia Cara. Which breaks down the real struggles and day-to-day life of someone with an eating disorder. This song reminded me directly of “Skinny” specifically the personal journey it talks about, the suffering caused by beauty standards. The way it makes you feel, it haunts you, but at the same time it’s so beautiful and gives you goosebumps. This song really focused on the conversation over ED as well as toxic beauty standards. It takes you through the eyes of a young woman, exactly like Skinny, and shows that society makes her think she has to suffer to be beautiful. So she starves herself, to try to look skinny, fit, and as close to the advertisements. In this process even cutting herself to make her forget about hunger. There’s also this “male gaze” referenced- which shows media, companies, and ads engage in this which leads to never realistic and unhealthy beauty standards.


Which directly links us to Skinny. Skinny (2023) Skinny reintroduces all of these topics. It exclaims the unrealistic and unhealthy beauty standards bestowed upon us. Personal story and personal journey of what it’s like. It is a lingering effect that people can struggle with for their entire lives. It is also an issue as it comes on full force, there are very few warning signs to dictate someone is struggling if they’re not open about their eating disorder. In the beginning of the eating disorder, you cannot physically decide or see someone is struggling. Personally, people battling don’t see this change quickly either and it only takes 7-14 days to get into a habit. Therefore they get themselves deep in and do not realize how much damage it is doing to their bodies.

At first, you are unable to realize there is an issue. In the song, Emmy says “It started in the tenth grade someone said you have a pretty face just drop the weight” so she skipped cake at all of her birthday parties and avoided eating it at all because of this comment. Comments and standards change your outlook on the way you provide and fuel the body.

A very similar message to both songs attached to this lineage. Hint at this connection, to open the conversation, show this affects many people, and personally how deep beauty standards alter society.

– Paul Urban