“Comes across as 50 trying to be 20” | Music That We Hate
The following are all nominations for Music We Hate from students in Sex Drugs Rock N’ Roll (QUT course number KMB003).
I forbade my students from playing me Redfoo again after the first tutorial. And I have to say that Florida Georgia Line song (and video) is just around the most irritating song and misognynistic video (treating women as accroutements) I’ve seen for a while. Interestingly, one student from South Carolina stated that the 95% hate ratio in the class towards the group would have been an 80% love ratio in a similar class back home for her. Two separate classes voted for Meghan Trainor – I ain’t really made my mind up on this, but the song was eloquently argued against; my gut feeling remains that it’s a throwaway song with a body positive music aimed at 11-year-old girls who probably have taken a reasonable amount of comfort from it. The “skinny” line is a shame, but I’m not sure I’d read so much into it. More worrying is the contention that it’s not just all about the bass but more all about pleasing your man, defining your attractiveness in relation to how attractive your (or a) man finds you.
Did I mention how much I hated the Florida Georgia Line song yet?
Interesting that (some of) my students viewed the Lana Del Rey song as anti-feminist. Here’s a link to Brigette’s essay on her. It was written around the time Lizzy Grant entered popular consciousness.
It’s as beautiful a collage about American celebrity culture as you can get. And at the same time it conjures images of 100,000 middle class homes where the female of the species rests quietly, maybe just drunk, in a haze of marijuana smoke watching quietly as one or more males play video games. The snapshots of this microcosm and macrocosm reveal that the same issues of power and control form the basis of each, and have the same depressing results. Unfulfilled desires, expectations to behave and misbehave in the appropriate contexts, and desperation for acceptance and love. This is real life for many young women around the world. And the song deserves to be heard by thousands of young women who can relate to the nihilism, the self-hatred and the struggle against darkness represented in this song. Let us hope it serves as a warning. (The Question of Authenticity and Lana Del Rey)
With One Direction, I was fully expecting to trot out the line about, “You don’t hate One Direction for their songs”, except the student group in question systematically tore the song apart. Quite brilliantly.
The Chris Brown comment was especially interesting, coming from a former Chris Brown fan, how his marketing (and songwriting) was changed to fit in and work with his new “bad boy” persona. Cos that’s what some people want from their popular music, a cheap thrill. Never mind the brutality, feel the frisson of fear.
That Kanye/Rihanna/McCartney “song” really is a five-minute jam that someone was fortunate enough to record, and someone else savvy enough to release, understanding that the weight and relative weirdness of names attached was enough to guarantee considerable interest. Absolute rubbish.
One group couldn’t decide on a particular song, but said they hated “jazz that has no time signature”. I know what they mean.
There was a weird comment around the Hilltop Hoods choice. Someone, looking to defend it, made a remark along the lines of how she felt more comfortable dancing to them in a club because she’s white (and they’re white). I didn’t pick up on it at the time, cos I figured – and still figure – I might have misconstrued the meaning.
The Ty Dolla $ign song really does have some seriously unfunny, derogatory lyrics.
Pitbull was a popular favourite across all the tutorial groups.
Anyway. Here are the musical choices from this week. There might be more to follow. The comments are all from students.
Meghan Trainor – All About The Bass
It’s not about body confidence, but a very poor example of setting gender roles. She’s talking about how a woman’s self-worth is dependent upon how attractive she is to a man.
Redfoo – Let’s Get Ridiculous
An instinctual hate. The video is about him being persecuted… for what?
Florida Georgia Line – Cruise
Inauthentic from beginning to end. And sexist. And horribly strutting.
Lana Del Rey – Video Games
Everything about the song. The sound. It’s anti-feminist.
One Direction – Best Song Ever
The start of the song is an obvious ‘Baba O’Riley’ [The Who] rip, which they pretend is an intentional homage. Glee-style pop instrumentation that could have been taken straight from Garage Band, coupled with Coldplay “everything coming in at the same time” arrangements. Awful chorus. Fake authenticity – acting like a rock band, not a boy band, trying to seem cool and edgy.
Pitbull – International Love ft Chris Brown
Pitbull’s terrible, but this one more for Chris Brown. I used to love Chris Brown, but after he beat up his girlfriend he became totally sexualised and anti-women.
Rihanna And Kanye West And Paul McCartney – FourFiveSeconds
It’s embarrassing. You feel sorry for the people in the video, the way they’re acting. It’s like watching a bad gig where you want them to do well but they just can’t.
3OH!3 – My First Kiss (feat. Ke$ha)
It’s like watching a Holden Dealership get hold of a very innocent and sweet moment that happens when you’re about 12 or 13, and turn it into an over-sexualised moment. The entire band look like rich boys whose parents have paid for the video.
Ty Dolla $ign – Or Nah ft. The Weeknd, Wiz Khalifa & DJ Mustard
The lyrics! They’re serious and the lyrics are so disgusting.
Hilltop Hoods – Cosby Sweater
Music for Bogans.
Pitbull – Timber ft. Ke$ha
So cheesy, like a womaniser who comes across as 50 trying to be 20.
Ylvis – The Fox (What Does The Fox Say?)
The dumbest song I’ve ever heard.
brokeNCYDE – Freaxxx
Lil Wayne – Knockout ft. Nicki Minaj
Paris Hilton – Good Time (Explicit) ft. Lil Wayne