Thursday, January 6, 2011

Hey! Wait I Could of Sworn I Heard That Chorus in '87...

Driving back home on 95 from my shopping extravaganza for impractical clothing, I heard the first couple chords of Stand By Me come on the radio. I was just about to channel my Patti LuPone vocals and belt that shit like I was headlining Madison Square Garden.


Expecting to hear the alleviating and mollifying voice of Ben E. King permeate through my '02 Civic's older than God's grandmother sound system, I was prepping myself like an Olympic runner at a 100 yard dash waiting to hear the shot of the pistol. I had my diva hand up and all, bent at the appropriate acute angle at the wrist.

Alas, it wasn't the 1961 version of Stand By Me, it was Sean Kingston's single Beautiful Girls from 2007.

What my face looked like more or less.

Switching to another radio station I also heard Jason Derulo...excuse me, Jason Deeeerulooooo's Whatcha Say which substitutes features Imogen Heap's song Hide and Seek as the chorus. 

Many artists have been substituting melodies and choruses from previous hits into their own songs just to get a #1 on the charts. They recycle melodies such as Sean Kingston's intro to Beautiful Girls or substitute a chorus with a previous hit like Jason Deeeeruloooo. 

Origins of this trend can be accredited to P. Diddy (is that what he's calling himself this week?) who took segments from older songs and rapped over them. Its kinda cool but now that everyone has discovered the magical elixir of getting a #1 on the Hot 100, its really starting to decay an artists' creative backbone and intestinal fortitude. 

I think its a lazy tactic on part of the artist and their production team. They take a previous hit, put it in the song, give it a fancy beat, spat out some witty lyrics and they shoot right up on the charts. In terms of popular culture, it's constantly evolving, becoming more sonically innovative, and changing our media culture everyday. I really wish this trend of recycling previous hits as an excuse to get #1s would simmer down for a bit.

Sit in the studio longer, listen to your team, and generate another hit! Shit, hire me I'll write you a song. I have so many Merlot-stained hits under my bed I can give you. There  are many melodies, lyrics, choruses to be unearthed that have the potential to be bigger hits than the ones you're contemplating throwing in there to call it a day so you can make happy hour.  

Just a thought. :)


  1. SO true. Next time i hear fergie trying to sing "i had the time of my life" I will reach right through my car speakers all the way to LA and strangle her. It's getting a little ridiculous.

  2. So true.

    And, here is the perfect song that sums it all up...


  3. Remember when Jason Derulo went home in a cab after the GaGa show?? Because I do.