The disappointment I feel when I listen to this track is similar to the disappointment I felt when Liz Phair “sold out” back when I was in ninth grade. I remember being so personally hurt when Liz’s 2003 self-titled album came out that this nytimes article about her “embarrassing form of career suicide” literally brought tears to my eyes.
I was obviously young and immature and didn’t have a lot going on in my life, but I remember it felt as though Liz had personally rejected me as a fan, saying that I didn’t matter anymore and the music I identified with didn’t matter, because all she really wanted to do was write music for 8 year old girls who hang out in shopping malls.
Nicki is obviously a very different case, and I can’t say she sold out because she’s always been on huge pop songs with huge singers, but she is similar to Liz in that she’s wasting her talent by writing appallingly bland, mediocre duds. What makes someone cool wake up one morning and decide to suck?
Hopefully no Nicki song will ever compare to Liz Phair’s attempt at rap:
I’ve just spent the last few hours working on a dance playlist, under the pretense of making my birthday party playlist, but also because it’s fun to pick out my favorite dance songs and then to arrange them in absolutely perfect order. It’s funny how dance songs, by their nature, are the songs that are most shared. Dancing is the easiest way of connecting with people over music, and so it doesn’t matter how much sad, quiet, or weird stuff I own, I’m only going to share the uptempo booty-shakers. Not that I’m complaining — I’m really excited to bust moves to this new playlist.
There’s a story in my family about how my great grandmother came to America from her shtetl in Poland just because she wanted to dance. I don’t know how much truth there is to the story, and it’s doubtable for many reasons, but I like the idea of dance being a basic human right, worthy of sacrificing just about everything for.
In Jewish tradition, men and women have to dance in separate groups, and at ceremonies, the men always hog the dance floor. I really hope this Fiddler on The Roof clip is an accurate portrayal of what my ancestors’ lives were like:
As the story goes, my great grandmother heard that in America, women were allowed to dance whenever and however they wanted (and with men!) and she was so excited by this possibility that she saved some money, divorced her husband, and hopped on a boat to America, just to dance. I’m sure I’ve inherited those genes.