Robert Pattinson was just 26 when he became one of the most popular actors of our time. He started his career when he was just 17, and went on to become arguably the most famous male model in history. Even now, at age 36, millions of people still recognize him from his role as Cedric Diggory in the Harry Potter film series.
But it wasn’t just his good looks that made him popular. He’s known for his acting talent and charming personality, and has graced the big screen in critically acclaimed films like Dune, Twilight, and Good Will Hunting. The world was introduced to Robert Pattinson’s music in 2016, when he released his debut album, Bitte. With its romantic melodies and passionate lyrics, it was clear that this was a step forward for the English actor.
Now, he’s back with a brand new single, and it’s a duet with his longtime girlfriend, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley. The song is called “Beautiful.”
On the surface, “Beautiful” is another sappy love song, complete with a catchy melody and a soft guitar solo by Chris Martin. But if you listen carefully, you can hear all the romantic feels inside. The lyrics pair a deep sentiment with a striking image. For example, the line “Your eyes are stunning and your nose is pretty too” could be about the couple’s romantic relationship, or it could be about their unique personalities. Either way, it’s a sweet sentiment.
Then there’s the line “Shame on me if I do not call you beautiful,” which is about facing your own insecurities and not shaming the one you love. That sense of vulnerability is what makes “Beautiful” so special. It feels like a love letter to his girlfriend, written by someone who trusts and desires her happiness more than anything else.
The song was co-written by Martin, with Eric Fredrickson and Jeff Bhasker. Martin has also produced the track, along with a host of other accomplished musicians. They all came together for what was arguably the romantic love letter of the year.
While there are certainly similarities between “Beautiful” and previous songs from Bitte, it is unquestionably its own thing. Where there are sappy love songs before, there is now a vulnerability that was lacking. It’s as if Pattinson and his collaborators wanted to make sure that this song was different from everything that came before it. This is most evident in the way the song closes, with an unexpected flourish by pianist Lang Lang. This is not a standard, pop-friendly song finale. It wants to stay in your head for the rest of your life. And that’s a beautiful thing.
The History of the Album and the Singer
Bitte is the English word for “please” or “thank you.” But it also refers, somewhat obscurely, to “an impression made on a sensitive artist by the imperfections of a painting,” especially when those imperfections are “unintentional.”
This is the sort of linguistic nuance that makes fans of English literature and poets alike. It appears that Robert Pattinson is a huge fan of Edward Elgar, the English composer best known for his classical music. Elgar wrote a piece of music inspired by a poem by Lord Byron called “The Miller’s Song,” which appears on Bitte.
“The Miller’s Song” speaks of the beauty of a young, innocent, and free-spirited woman, named Madeline. Byron described her as follows:
“She has the most beautiful eyes, / Like starlight on the sea, / And beautiful dark hair, / Like moonlight on the waves. / […] She is so gentle and so kind, / That she could make a brute / Like myself / Feel like a god.”
Byron’s description makes Madeline sound like a combination of an angel and a temptress. It is clear that Robert Pattinson found this combination of gentle sweetness and alluring magnetism.
The contrast between Madeline’s appearance and behavior is highlighted in the stanza that follows:
“I am only a rude hill-man; / But she is so enchanting / That a prince could win / Her heart in a fair fight / And prove a loyal mate.”
This is, to coin a phrase, “a tough act to follow.” But as we have established, Robert Pattinson is no ordinary pop star. He is the creator of his own unique persona and the face of a global brand. He can follow any lead he chooses, and he has chosen to do so with confidence, perhaps even a touch of arrogance.
Pattinson worked with some of the best collaborators ever assembled for this project. They came from all corners of the music industry, and their combined experience helped turn the album from good to great. Here are some of the people and companies responsible for making Bitte what it is:
As mentioned, Martin, Eric Fredrickson, and Jeff Bhasker all worked together on the song “Beautiful,” and they did indeed write a brilliant song. But the list of songwriters on Bitte goes on and on. It includes Jimmy Napes, Steve Mac, and Martin Harrington. More than anything else, these songwriters’ unique styles and songwriting genius help make Bitte what it is. They are responsible for crafting beautiful melodies and lyrics, and they do this masterfully.
While “Beautiful” is, at heart, a love letter to his girlfriend, it also has a universality that makes it one of the best songs of the year. The lyrics speak to everyone, not just lovers. They express devotion and admiration, as well as a feeling of humble gratitude, and the song’s music embodies all these feelings. Some of the lyrics are even positively motivational, as when the singer proclaims “I will not let you down. I swear this to you. I will not let you down.”
As for the collaborators behind those lyrics, Martin has previously worked with U2, Lady Gaga, and Beyoncé. He has also produced popular hits for Taio Cruz, Rudimental, and Jeezy. But it’s not just about the music he has produced. It’s about everything he has done, and continues to do, for pop music.
Eric Fredrickson has a similar global music background. He has collaborated with the likes of Lady Gaga, Nicki Minaj, and Rihanna. He also worked with Martin on the tracks “Beautiful” and “Lucky,” and co-wrote the song “Middle Child.”
While these songwriters are undoubtedly talented, it’s not just about the music they create. It’s about the entire package, from the lyrics to the arrangement of the songs to the album artwork and design. For Bitte, Pattinson worked with some of the best in the business. He hired Brian Gardner, who has produced numerous hit albums for the likes of Elton John, Shania Twain, and One Direction. He also worked with Tommy Barbarella, Benny Price, and Jon Platt. They aren’t just good at producing music. They are also skilled at making albums.
Platt, in particular, has worked with the biggest names in music, and he helped bring Bitte to life. He worked with Adele on her album, which won the Grammy for Best Album. He also worked with Kendrick Lamar on his album, and he produced the Grammy-winning album, Damn. He is the mastermind behind all those hit songs, and the producers of Bitte were simply following his lead.
As already established, Madeline’s captivating beauty is one of the things that makes “Beautiful” so special. But her gentle nature and allure are also what make her special. It’s clear that Robert Pattinson found someone who is not only beautiful, but also sweet and kind. This is a woman who could easily attract the opposite sex with her good looks, but instead chooses to bring a kind of goodness and softness to others. The line “Shame on me if I do not call you perfect” is an ode to her grace and selflessness. It is also a statement of the singer’s humility, as he realizes that she is, indeed, perfect. They are a perfect match, in every way.