97 Words: “I’m Not Here to Make Friends” by Sam Smith

Vincent Anthony
2 Min Read

This song is part of our “THE SUMMER 97 (1998 x 2023)” playlist. Check out the full list.

Honesty is a key element on any journey to personal liberation. For Sam Smith, their newfound unrestricted persona has an anthem in the disco-inspired single “I’m Not Here to Make Friends.” While its very queer, very sexualized music video received plenty of flack, some for reasons warranted (hideous fashions) and unwarranted (body and slut shaming), the song itself is an undeniable good time. Honest in the celebration of their queer identity, and honest in the song’s straightforward message (the title pretty much sums that up), on Smith’s most fun track to date, the truth sets them free.

Watch the “I’m Not Here to Make Friends” video, stream it, or order the “Gloria” album on vinyl.

In celebration of summer, the staff at THE 97 has compiled a playlist containing some of our favorite summer songs, from then and now. Each day we will reveal one song, rotating daily between past and present with pairings from 1998 and 2023, for a total of 97 days/songs. Since we love nostalgia, we’re celebrating summer songs from 1998 as they turn 25, alongside new songs that we feel deserve some shine. Pairings could be thematic, sonic, or based connections between the artists.

Check out our full “THE SUMMER 97 (1998 x 2023)” playlist here.


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Vincent is the founder of the magazine and has had a strong passion for popular music since, well, 1997! If it's not obvious, his favorite artists include Destiny's Child, Mariah Carey, Janet Jackson, Michael Jackson, P!nk, and many more. Vincent lives in New York, where he is a high school English teacher, and currently he is pursuing a Master's in Journalism at the Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at CUNY.