I vividly remember an occasion from the days when I was a dancing teacher and my students implored me to choreograph a routine to Usher’s OMG. I wanted to shake them and tell them that they deserved more lyrical content from a song than ‘shorty got a booty like pow pow pow, shorty got some boobies like wow wow wow!’
And that is what I want to say to the inhabitants of Bangkok. Most specifically, the party-goers who frequent the likes of Bed Supperclub, Levels and Khao San Road. People! It does nothing for the advancement of mankind if the entire contents of a club goes crazy with delirious delight when the DJ drops ‘Will you blow my whistle baby‘ by Flo Rida. Stop encouraging it!!
Now, the musical, lyrical and moral failings of Mr Rida are easily spotted and, to anyone with an iota of esteem for music and themselves, quickly discarded as tripe. I won’t insult your intelligence by suggesting that you need it pointing out. But then there is the Danger Zone. Herein lie the fun, catchy songs which could be termed harmless, cheesy pop- I’m looking at you, Rihanna. Generally speaking, I’m sick of it, it’s tedious and sloppy and all sounds the same but it isn’t ethically repellant in quite the same way. But I refer to it as the Danger Zone because within it lurk some very questionable items, cunningly disguised as cheery tunes. I would like to break down an example in the hope it will encourage others to do the same, to be discerning and demand more from the blinged out millionaires who are being allowed to churn out lazy tracks with poisonous, misogynistic or even just simply terrible lyrics.
Here is my example: it’s called Give Me Everything. It is by the spectacularly talentless Pitbull and features the soulful vocals of Ne-yo (who should know better) and some chick. It goes like this:
Grab somebody sexy, tell em ‘hey!’
For starters, solid opening guys! Grasp at a random good-looking human, yank them towards you and pour forth some romance: Hey!
Tonight. I want all of you tonight. Give me everything tonight
Well, that’s a bit demanding! Oh, you can justify yourself? Well, lets hear it…
For all we know, we might not get tomorrow
Oh! Good sound reasoning for demanding sex. Nice. Look, if you want to have a one night stand with a sexy stranger, that’s your business. I’m not here to judge. Fill your boots! Just don’t pretend it’s because you think the apocalypse is on the way! (And remember folks, if you do make outrageous claims which turn out not to be true- it’s not the end of the world. Just ask the Mayans.)
In fact, I think it would be interesting to conduct a social experiment whereby we actually try this approach in real life. Are there any volunteers who are willing to deliver this line, verbatim? Do let us know how you get on!
He goes on to say
Excuse me, I might drink a little more than I should tonight, and I might take you home with me if I could tonight, and baby I’ma make you feel real good tonight…
I suspect the former would tend to make the latter less likely.
’cause we might not get tomorrow.
Please please, when songs of this nature are played in clubs, do not wave your hands in the air like you just don’t care. Because you should.