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2015/03/04

Of Note: A Couple of Head Scratchers


Of Note: 
A Couple of Head Scratchers

Every once in a while a pop song will come along that immediately captures my attention, making it a must have.  The hook is undeniable, or the vocals dead on, or the production shines and is of its time – something about it makes me jump on board like a circuit boy at a gay pride parade. 

That’s why, when said single fails to catch fire, is ignored by radio and lacks significant sales – it leaves me wondering WTF?  It also has me questioning my taste in music. 

Such is the case with today’s selection of singles that failed to break big.


Sledgehammer
Fifth Harmony

I was rather lukewarm about Fifth Harmony’s first single, ‘BO$$’ and sort of wrote them off as yet another reality show girl group with little staying power.  However, my assessment has since changed, solely based on the outrageous pop chops on display in ‘Sledgehammer’. 

The first time I heard this song, it was blasting from the radio as I was scraping snow off my car.  Oddly enough, it was the lyrics that caught my attention.  It sounded like something from 1994.  Yes, I came for the lyrics, but I stayed for the production and performance. It has wiggled its way into my brain, where it has stayed for several months.  I love this song.  So why did it only peak for a single week at #40 on Billboard’s Hot 100?  It should have been massive.


Stuck On A Feeling
Prince Royce feat. Snoop Dogg

Prince (the purple one) / Marvin Gaye retreads have been hitting the pop charts a lot lately.  So, if Robin Thicke can score with ‘Blurred Lines’, and Jason Derulo can hit with ‘Talk Dirty’, then why has there been no love for Prince Royce’s ‘Stuck On A Feeling’.  A song that has the same subtle rhythmic pulse that made Justin Timberlake’s ‘Cry Me A River’ break huge?  Not even the presence of Snoop Dogg can make me turn away – I like the song so much, I actually find his rap rather charming. 

So what is it?  Played out?  Too much of an undercurrent?  What?


Dangerous
David Guetta feat. Sam Martin

Not a fan of Guetta.  Typically, I find his lyrics horribly forced and simplistic, his production rather rote and lacking personality.  That is NOT true of ‘Dangerous’ – a true pop gem that sparkles and pops with an urgency that I find super stimulating.  Yet, while spending weeks in the lower half of the Hot 100 and getting a bit of airplay, it has yet to crack the Top 40 – a situation that has me scratching my head. 

Is it me?


Burnin’ Up
Jessie J feat. 2 Chainz

If ‘Bang Bang’ worked for pop radio, then why not Jessie J’s follow-up, ‘Burnin’ Up’?  This track sizzles.  In my head, I keep picturing the pedal step that propels her across the stage during the breathy little breaks.  Super sexy.  And she is.

So what gives?  This is an artist that deserves to break much bigger than she has, yet Jessie solo can’t seem to catch a break. 

Well, there they are, in all their slick, gleaming potential.  So, please leave a comment if you agree or disagree.  Is it me?  Am I out of step with the times?  I find each of these songs exhilarating – not original, by any means, but a whole lot of fun.

So, what gives? 








1 comment:

whkattk said...

Our tastes change as we age. I do believe it's as simple as that. I find myself enjoying styles of music I often thought were garbage. I.e., I recently discovered the Texas Tenors (yeah, Texas...see what I mean?) - I expected to totally hate them. They surprised me with their arrangements and the blending of their voices. Even individually they've all got vocal tones that are pleasant to my ears. Go figure.
But, the bottom line is if we like something, we like something...