Friday, July 28, 2006

Rest in Peace, Music Videos

OK, what's going on here?

I recently had the unfortunate chance to view Black-Eyed Peas singer and new solo "artist" Sarah "Fergie" Ferguson's new music video, "London Bridge." Wow. I've rarely had the impulse to projectile vomit after seeing something on TV, and I've seen a guy eat a turd.

The song is bad enough, with the singer exposing not only her new, hip moniker (Fergie Ferg), but also her complete lack of rhythm or rhyme, coupled with a unique ability to write the most confusingly repulsive lyrics I've ever heard ("Fergie Ferg and me love you long time," "My lovely lady lumps....").

The video only makes it worse. The woman is describing the desire for her "London Bridge to go down," which is obviously a reference to her love of architecture, but isn't it misplaced in this song? Basically it's Fergie dancing on tabletops in a man's dress shirt and British-Flag panties, shaking and shaking and shaking her humps.

What's wrong with this, you ask? It's not sexy. Fergie is a very attractive girl, but it's not attractive to me to see out-and-out bravado over being a slut. Maybe you disagree, but when Tawny Kitaen danced on the hood of the car, THAT was sexy. Of course, I was about 12 years old when I watched that, and everything was sexy then.

Extrapolate to music videos in general. What have they given us lately? Obviously there's not the platform there once was for these pieces of art to be seen as frequently, but they are still out there. Even on my days off I wake up early and watch VH-1 for the only glimpse at videos I get for the day or week. These things are hideous. Because MTV doesn't show videos anymore, I guess nobody wants to put any effort into them any more.

Extrapolate even more to music in general. The chart toppers are songs like Shakira's "Hips Don't Lie" (does that title sound stupid to anyone else?), Nelly Furtado's "Promiscuous" (another white girl who thinks she can rap), and The Pussycat Dolls' "Buttons". Eeek. The only thing saving this summer in popular music is the refreshing Gnarls Barkley record, with the haunting and beautiful "Crazy".

Has one year made that much of a difference? I was bragging about how 2005 was arguably the music year of music since 1994. 2006 has seen it's share of very good albums come out so far (The Raconteurs, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Flaming Lips, Ice Cube, the aforementioned Gnarls Barkley), but it hasn't translated into the commercial successes like last year. Maybe around awards season we'll start to hear about the really impressive albums of this year.

As it is, the medium I grew up with and loved is dead. Music videos had their time, and now they must retire gracefully, before it gets any worse. Oh well.

There's always podcasts.


At 7/28/2006 04:31:00 PM, Blogger Jonathan said...

I agree with you on Fergie; I was dumfounded when I saw this the other day. But Buttons; that's some pretty sexy shit even if the song is retarted.

At 7/29/2006 07:42:00 AM, Anonymous John B said...

I have to agree with you about the amount of crap that is getting passed for good music. As one of my friends put it, "We are in a bad music era." Hardly anyone is putting out anything good, original, or memorable. Everyday on the radio I hear at least 5 new songs from 5 new groups and they all sound the same, all get lots of air time for a month, and then they're gone. I haven't even bought a full CD from anyone new in the past 2 years! I still have my favorites that put out new albums (Social D, Dropkick Murphys), but nothing new has excited me past 1 or 2 of their songs.


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