Crossed-Genre Singles: Latest Music Phenomena?
Last year I had an intense debate with Ray about “California Gurls”. He thought it was another ear candy. However I stood on the innocent side. Who knows this "ear-candy" single would probably become the new recipe in music industry? Pop with Rap? Sounds like new taste! In the end, the chart was disagreed with Ray. “California Gurls” was not just an ear candy but a massive hit.
So the music industry went on. Another “crossed-genres” singles showed up. The word “featuring” slowly replaced “Duet” (or “with”). The result are some popular singles we heard: “Starstrukk” 3OH!3 ft. Katy Perry, “Baby” – Justin Bieber ft. Ludacris, “Eenie Meenie” Justin Bieber ft. Sean Kingston. I called them popular because, who didn't know any of it? The phenomena went on; “Love The Way You Lie”, Rihanna ft. Eminem, and “Airplanes”, B.OB ft. Hayley Williams. And yes, they are big songs.
Others following. Some were big sound. (“Billionaire” – Bruno Mars ft. Travis McCoy) but the rest had me hot and bothered. For example, “Heartbeat”, Enrique Iglesias ft. Nicole Scherzinger which spectacularly baffled me. How to define this song? A major catastrophe? Another example, “Tonight (I’m Loving You)”, still by Enrique but now featuring Ludacris. Boy, how he tried but failed. Kylie Minogue's “Higher” ft. Taio Cruz was also made its certain way to the lame-o land and the last but not the list, the our Latina Queen J.Lo who took the wrong dance “On The Floor” with Pitbull.
So what's really the problem with these songs? For me, they are all typically shallow. One genre (usually the origin of firstly-mention singer) dominated most of the song while there is small part where the featuring artist jump in. As it happens over and over again, I consequently conclude that it is the new "it" thing in music industry. Well I'm not being utterly cynic. If song like “Telephone” (Lady Gaga ft. Beyonce) could made its way to the top, why can't others? I'm not a musician but I love music. For me, to blend two different genres in one song needs more than just names and dirty lyrics. Yes, I'm saying that it's not that simple. Taking shortcut will only produced ear candies. On the contrary if it was magically well-composed, I have zero doubt than it will blow up and become massive. (Timbaland’s?)
In the end I have to express my deepest disappointment on this current phenomena. The reason is simply because I miss good songs. Songs with meaningful lyrics and arrangement that could touch your soul. Nonetheless I'm still expecting great duets like “Dilemma” or “Umbrella”. I realize that now we are in the era of EXPERIMENTS where everything like big, lifetime-worth-remembering song is possible to show (and major failure too). I'll keep watching. Who knows what the future holds? We'll probably will find Susan Boyle hitting with Linkin Park, Carrie Underwood dancing along Britney Spears, M.I.A rapping with Jamie Cullum or Taylor Swift doing ballad with Kanye West.
Impossible? We’ll see...