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Why Janet Jackson Should Be Remembered as A True Musician

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Source: Wikipedia

When the Superbowl was approaching earlier this year, some of the media took it upon themselves to remember Janet Jackson’s notorious 2004 half-time show wardrobe malfunction. Since then, this incident as well as Janet’s last three albums (Damita Jo, 20 Y.O., and  Disclipine)  seems to have made Janet’s sexuality more memorable than anything else.  However, there are many reasons that Janet should be remembered as a true musician.

1. She has paved the way for many musicians of today.

Janet’s “Pleasure Principle” music video inspired R&B singer Cassie’s “Me & U” music video.

Janet’s chair dance from the music video for “Miss You Much” influenced Britney Spears’ “Stronger” music video.

Janet’s music videos for “Love Will Never Do Without You” and “That’s The Way Love Goes” influenced Ciara’s “Body Party” music video.

 The angry feeling evoked in Janet’s song “Black Cat” can be heard in Christina Aguilera’s song “Fighter“.

2.  Her 1997 album The Velvet Rope showed that you can be sexy, socially conscious, and emotionally vulnerable as a woman.

Rope Burn” is a sexy song that involves sadomasochism.

Free X-One” is a song that supports those who are gay and bi-sexual.

What About” is a explicit, angry song that discusses being physically abused in a relationship.

Special” is a hopeful song that Janet channeled her depression into.

3. Collectively, her songs have an innovative and eclectic sound.

Rhythm Nation” from the album Rhythm Nation 1814- combines new jack swing with funk.

Funky Big Band” from the album Janet- combines jazz with hip-hop beats.

Velvet Rope” from the album The Velvet Rope– combines violin with dance beats.

Trust A Try‘ from the album All For You- combines orchestra, hip-hop beats, and rock.

4. She has been and is an amazing live performer with an electrifying stage presence and an angelic voice.

Janet live at the Grammy’s in 1987– “What Have You Done For Me Lately” and “Nasty”

Janet live at the MTV VMA’s in 1993– “That’s The Way Love Goes” and “If”

Janet live at The Velvet Rope Tour in 1997–  “Let’s Wait a While” and “Again”

Janet live in 1997/98 (Velvet Rope era)– “I Get Lonely”

Janet live at MTV Icon in 2001– “All For You”

Bonus: She has shown that sometimes alternate versions of songs are just as good or better than the original.

Black Cat (Guitar Mix)– this song features Vernon Reid of the band Living Colour on guitar.

Together Again (Deeper Mix)– a slower R&B version of the song.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Op Ed: How Pop Music Can Be More Unique

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A few weeks ago, I read an article on the Huffington Post entitled “Pop Music Too Loud And All The Same: Official“. I don’t know about the too loud part, but I’ve thought most pop music sounded all the same since high school.

Anyway, the article got me thinking about how pop music can be more unique:

1. Don’t be Cookie Cutter; Be You

One of the reasons Pink is my favorite pop musician is that I admire her for having the courage to find her own sound and tell people she was going to do her music her way. And what better way to do it than with the song “Don’t Let Me Get Me”? A song with a similar message is Avril Lavinge’s “Nobody’s Fool”, which is from her debut album Let Go. Like Pink, Avril Lavinge has left her own mark in the music industry with this song and many others.

2.  Use love, sex, and relationship lyrics sparingly

Ok, I know these things make the world go round. However, as human beings, we have other emotions and things we experience. It wouldn’t hurt if more pop musicians wrote about the world around them. Even Michael Jackson, for all his dance songs, literally wrote about the world in  songs like “Earth Song”.

3. Don’t be afraid to go deep

Sometimes, the most powerful songs end up being inspired by personal experiences. Take the song “I’m Ok” by Christina Aguilera. Any fan (or person willing do some research) will know that this song is based on Christina’s childhood. While it might not be as famous as the song “Beautiful”, it is still a song worth acknowledging.

4. Make a creative music video

While the song may be fine by itself, a great music video can bring it to life. If you don’t like the song, then maybe the music video will make you appreciate it a little. A recent example is for Pink’s new song “Blow Me (One Last Kiss).” I don’t like the song due to my personal taste, but the music video made me feel better about it.

LINKS:

Don’t Let Me Get Me- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K_t9AA3Z4PE

Nobody’s Fool-http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9X6pKjgjfko

Earth Song- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3sg5EkHF5tg&hd=1

I’m Ok-http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=quAFmNvk_Zs

Blow Me One Last Kiss-http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3jNlIGDRkvQ

Written by Serena Zola

August 12, 2012 at 6:00 PM

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