Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Charli XCX (feat. Rina Sawayama), 'Beg for You'

To discuss the new Charli XCX single, you have to start with "Cry for You," a 2006 one-hit wonder of sweeping dance Europop from Swedish singer September. Even 15 years after its release, "Cry for You" holds up — both in headphones and on dance floors — courtesy of euphoric nostalgia and an explosive chorus. Joined by fellow Y2K-appreciator Rina Sawayama, Charli takes the September original and adds a wistful, garage spin to create "Beg for You," a yearning lament.

These days, most top 40 pop seems to come with a heavy dose of interpolation (look at someone like Ava Max, whose best songs are founded on Eurodance samples, or Dua Lipa's newfound superstardom from songs that prominently lift from INXS and White Town). It makes sense, then, that Charli picked "Cry for You" to build on top of: she's promoted her forthcoming fifth studio album, Crash, as a "selling out" record, and the September sample makes "Beg for You" just cheesy enough to appropriately fit in with her dance-heavy catalog.

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit

Reanna Cruz is a news assistant for NPR Music's Alt.Latino.