MUSIC REVIEW: Avril Lavigne is tender in "Breakaway" original

Apr 7, 2014 at 12:16 a.m. ET

Avril Lavigne can mostly appear rough around the edges. She's spunky and cute, but rarely entirely vulnerable. There's a track floating around that could've been "it" for her. Question is, is this version better than the version Kelly Clarkson made famous?

Avril Lavigne
Photo credit: JLN Photography/

There are plenty of actors who fudged by passing on roles that could have either been their breakthrough role, or at least one that would've paid their bills for the next decade.

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Need examples? Sean Connery passed up on playing "Gandalf" in The Lord of the Rings trilogy. Will Smith could have been "Neo" in The Matrix series. And the most personally shocking reveal was my beloved Buffy star, Sarah Michelle Gellar, could've played the worldwide icon Cher Horowitz in Clueless. But, alas, she turned that down too.

Iggy Azalea also had her chance at playing Cher Horowitz in her latest music video >>

Meet Avril Lavigne. She turned down using a song she had helped write, because it didn't suit her sound for the album. Meet the glorious Kelly Clarkson, who could cite "Breakaway" as the song that helped catapult her onto an undefeated ranking.

When was the last time you even heard of Lavigne? She was last seen here gushing about her hubby >>

Though this recording of Lavigne singing her own song has been around for a while, it recently emerged for fans to take a listen. It's a side that's uncomfortably vulnerable, and almost so amateur that it's beautiful.

Lavigne was a punk-rock chick who had moments of down time to sing "ballads" like "When You're Gone" and "Keep Holding On" and the more recent "Let Me Go," but not one of those songs grabs at her innocence like her rendition of "Breakaway."

It's my opinion that Kelly Clarkson made this a hit, and Lavigne's version wouldn't have been a fraction as successful, but Lavigne's is delicate with a pre-pubescent glow whereas Clarkson's was fiery and empowering.

The first few stanzas may have you scoffing at the idea I would make such complimentary remarks, because it does sound amateur at times. But when you do remember Lavigne isn't all that amateur as a vocalist, your skepticism is replaced by appreciation for her vulnerability.

So, the question is, readers, do you think she was a moron for not putting this on her album?