Julia Gargano’s new single, “You Don’t Get To,” continues to impress me


Genius Lyrics

The song cover of Gargano’s latest single

As the 2021 season of American Idol has begun, it made me curious to see how last year’s top contestants have been faring in the world of music, and as I was looking, I stumbled upon one of my favorites. 

Julia Gargano, who finished in the top 5 in the 2020 season of American Idol, is finally making her musical debut. Her first single since American Idol, “You Don’t Get To,” was released on February 19, 2021. 

As I followed along with American Idol’s last season, there was no doubt that I was rooting for Gargano. Even from her very first audition, Katy Perry—one of the judges—predicted that Gargano would finish in the top 5 due to her mesmerizing vocals; she was able to debut one of her original songs along with showing America her magnificent voice. 

Like the judges, I was blown away by how professional her singing sounded, but I’m no expert. Not to mention, the song she sang in front of the judges, “Growing Pains,” was one that she had written herself. The fact that she also wrote songs was another element about her that stood out to me and caused me to watch her very closely as the season progressed and she continued to dazzle everyone in the audience. 

She really put herself out there as an artist by singing an original, and since then, I’ve looked forward to seeing her next release. Gargano seemed to have taken a short break following American Idol and has finally released her first single since last spring. 

Though the song is somber, it also has a peaceful closure to it.”

“You Don’t Get To” is a song about breaking away from the one who never treated you right. In the song, there are countless verses that seem to scream the theme “he doesn’t deserve you.” 

Simply put, Gargano is singing about all the things that her former partner no longer gets to do since their breakup, singing, “You don’t get to know how I’m doing or get to say we’re friends/You don’t get to see what you’re losing and hurt me all over again.” 

It seems like throughout the song, Gargano is trying to convince herself—along with her former partner—that she is better off without him and that she deserves better. Though the song is somber, it also has a peaceful closure to it. I think this was a purposeful way to symbolize gentle healing from a relationship that took a lot out of her. 

Also, as I watched the music video accompanying the song, I noticed that Gargano looks so much happier in the end than in the beginning. It was noticeable enough to me to realize that she has finally convinced herself that she meant every lyric she sang. 

The song itself is outstanding, but I think that the way Gargano brings the lyrics alive is what makes the song one that captures my attention. 

With such a wide range, Gargano is able to nail the high notes but also go into the deepest spots altos can reach in the soulful segments of her songs. Another element that first stood out to everyone—and me—back when she competed in American Idol was the unique gravely feature of her voice that I have never heard in any other singers before. 

That feature sealed the deal for me as I listened to her very first song, and it has continued to amaze me in “You Don’t Get To.” 

To say I was very pleased with this song is an understatement; I am just thrilled about Gargano’s triumphant musical return that started off with an instant hit in my mind.