Ariana Grande Feels ‘Empowered’ By Her Newest Single ‘Thank U, Next’

Ariana Grande and "thank u, next."
Cindy Ord / Getty Images

Singer Ariana Grande’s newest single “thank u, next” dropped on Saturday night, immediately causing social media platforms to buzz with chat of the song’s meaning and uniqueness. Despite the title, the song is not meant to drag her exes, but rather to focus on the value of letting go of the past. In Ariana’s words in a recent tweet, “[it’s] jus love, gratitude, acceptance, honesty, forgiveness … and growth.”

E! News had the opportunity to speak with Ariana’s brother, self-proclaimed social media mogul Frankie Grande, at the premiere of The Girl in the Spider’s Web on Sunday. Frankie sang the “God is a woman” singer’s praises, commenting on how proud he is of his sister and on how strong and passionate she is.

“I am unbelievably proud of my sister. This project that she has been working on, it’s from the heart. If you listen to the lyrics…I sobbed and I cried the first time she played it for me. When she said, ‘I met someone else / And her name is Ari,’ I wept. Because it’s a message of self-love! And if you don’t put yourself first, then no other relationship matters, and no other relationship is going to work. To hear that being said by her is so beautiful.”

Frankie added that when Ariana sings “thank u, next,” she feels “empowered” and is “unbelievably happy” with her fans’ response to the song.

Fans were also surprised that the singer decided to release “thank u, next” 30 minutes before her most recent ex and former fiancé, Pete Davidson, was scheduled to appear on Saturday Night Live. Although he didn’t comment on Ariana’s newest track during the show’s “Weekend Update,” Davidson spoke about the breakup.

“I know some of you are curious about the breakup, but the truth is it’s nobody’s business and sometimes things just don’t work out and that’s okay. [Ariana is] a wonderful, strong person and I genuinely wish her all the happiness in the world.”

In addition to Davidson, Ariana name-drops exes Ricky Alvarez, Mac Miller, and Big Sean in the song. After the death of rapper Mac Miller in September and her breakup with Davidsion, Ariana has understandably had a rough year, making her song about finding peace with herself and the past a touching display of inner strength and self-awareness.

“Thank u, next” focuses on how all of the men in Ariana’s past have helped her grow and become the person she is today and how grateful she is to them. She also reveals that she’s found a new love: herself.

“She taught me love/She taught me patience/How she handles pain/That s**t’s amazing.”