Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

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Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby ConMan » Tue Apr 12, 2011 12:08 am UTC

... among others.
[http://www.smh.com.au/entertainment/music/spears-songwriter-hits-out-at-critics-20110408-1d7kg.html]Spears songwriter hits out at critics[/url]

For those who can't be bothered reading the article, Britney Spears was criticised for not having any writing credits on her latest album, one of the songwriters who was actually credited said that practically no artists these days write their own songs, and I am left in shock at the fact that this is news.
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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby masher » Tue Apr 12, 2011 12:45 am UTC


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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby iChef » Tue Apr 12, 2011 6:23 am UTC

I heard a horrible ugly rumor that the Monkees didn't play their own instruments and Neil Diamond wrote their songs. It's terrible what the press does to modern musicians in this day and age.
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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby CorruptUser » Tue Apr 12, 2011 7:17 am UTC

Well, most pop songs are written by the same guy. Oh, and there are lots of songwriters that have longer lists than most "artists".

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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby Minchandre » Tue Apr 12, 2011 7:39 am UTC

Weren't the Monkees invented for a TV show?

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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby ++$_ » Tue Apr 12, 2011 7:53 am UTC

As a classical musician, I am shocked to hear that all these pop singers just perform works written by other people, sometimes even putting their names on the front of the album and giving the actual composer a relatively small share of the credit. I mean, that's our job.

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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby Hemmers » Tue Apr 12, 2011 10:03 am UTC

CorruptUser wrote:Well, most pop songs are written by the same guy. Oh, and there are lots of songwriters that have longer lists than most "artists".

And Diane Warren. She's written for practically everybody.

Minchandre wrote:Weren't the Monkees invented for a TV show?


Dunno if they were specifically made for it, but yeah, they were the original manufactured boy band.
More recently we had "S Club 7" in the UK around the turn of the millenium, who probably made as much money out of the string of kids TV series as they did out of their music and live tours.


It kind of depends on what you mean by pop. There are a lot of "pop" singers who write their own material, or mix it up - Aerosmith write a lot of their own material but Diane Warren wrote "Don't Wanna Miss A Thing".

Some of the newer acts like Ellie Goulding also write a lot of their own material, only turning to writers to pad out the last few tracks on an album if they haven't got time because of touring or whatever.
Everyone performs other people's music, but the ratio of an artist's own material to what they buy in varies widely. Britney's total reliance on writers is by no means indicative of the whole pop marketplace.

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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby Endless Mike » Tue Apr 12, 2011 1:25 pm UTC

Hemmers wrote:
Dunno if they were specifically made for it, but yeah, they were the original manufactured boy band.
More recently we had "S Club 7" in the UK around the turn of the millenium, who probably made as much money out of the string of kids TV series as they did out of their music and live tours.


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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby Griffin » Tue Apr 12, 2011 2:31 pm UTC

I like most of Cathy Dennis's pop stuff, honestly. She writes for Kate Perry and Spears and a couple others.

Warren's stuff is pretty good too.

But seriously, this is like thinking Meatloaf wrote his own music. :P Jim Steinman, man, he was pretty good.

Some people have songwriting talent, some people have stage presence. It's always bugged me the stage presence people seem to get a disproportionate amount of the credit, but in a way... its kind of their job. Its about the brand, you know?
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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby Azrael » Tue Apr 12, 2011 3:20 pm UTC

ConMan wrote:For those who can't be bothered reading the article, Britney Spears was criticised for not having any writing credits on her latest album...

Nor did she on her first

And only a partial credit on:
6/15 on her 3rd.
9/13 on her 4th.
2/12 on her 5th.
3/13 on her 6th

Not exactly newsworthy when you bother to take 3 minutes on wikipedia to look at the data.

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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby nitePhyyre » Tue Apr 12, 2011 7:54 pm UTC

++$_ wrote:As a classical musician, I am shocked to hear that all these pop singers just perform works written by other people, sometimes even putting their names on the front of the album and giving the actual composer a relatively small share of the credit. I mean, that's our job.

That's quite funny.
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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby ConMan » Wed Apr 13, 2011 1:23 am UTC

Azrael wrote:
ConMan wrote:For those who can't be bothered reading the article, Britney Spears was criticised for not having any writing credits on her latest album...

Nor did she on her first

And only a partial credit on:
6/15 on her 3rd.
9/13 on her 4th.
2/12 on her 5th.
3/13 on her 6th

Not exactly newsworthy when you bother to take 3 minutes on wikipedia to look at the data.

That then makes me wonder, given that she (allegedly) doesn't just grab a credit for nothing, what her contributions to the songs she does have credit for actually are.
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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby CorruptUser » Wed Apr 13, 2011 6:31 am UTC

Looks sexy. Provides the voice (that is then autotuned to whatever the song requires).

Mostly just the Sexy. Except for the short time when we discovered she could reproduce.

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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby Zcorp » Wed Apr 13, 2011 7:36 am UTC

Sexy sure, but lots of people can be sexy, many of them more than her. She is quite genuinely a talented showman and few pop artists are as adept at creating spectacle as she or her team is.

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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby Zamfir » Wed Apr 13, 2011 7:41 am UTC

CorruptUser wrote:Looks sexy. Provides the voice (that is then autotuned to whatever the song requires).

Mostly just the Sexy. Except for the short time when we discovered she could reproduce.

Sure, but the question was about the songs where she does get partial credit. What's the difference between those and the ones where she doesn't get any credit?


Might just be negotiations. At the peak of her popularity she could demand partial credits, and some of the rights and income associated with it. Could also be that she tried to help writing songs, but found out she wasn't good enough at it. Or some combination: at the height of her career she could demand that the songs she co-wrote got on the album.

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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby Griffin » Wed Apr 13, 2011 6:07 pm UTC

I believe she actually did contribute to several songs, such as "if u seek amy", though the extent of the contribution is unknown to me. I think it was mostly lyrical requests. Basically, she contracted a specific song instead of buying a song that was offered to her (like most of the other songs)
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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby Dauric » Wed Apr 13, 2011 7:00 pm UTC

Zcorp wrote:Sexy sure, but lots of people can be sexy, many of them more than her. She is quite genuinely a talented showman and few pop artists are as adept at creating spectacle as she or her team is.


While true, there are some connoisseurs of music that think it's about.. y'know.. the music rather than the spectacle. Of course these heathens need to be burned on a pile of MP3-players by RIAA inquisitors, but that doesn't stop them from making the critique that an "Artist" should be the driving creative force behind a work to be called such, and not a living (or holographic) mannequin on which engineers, makeup artists, special effects crews, etc. wrap in "Spectacle" and leave to marketing goons to claim that it's "Good Music".

Some of these philistines might go so far as to suggest that when listening to music from a CD, or audio file (Or if they were actually -Gasp!- Luddite enough to suggest vinyl records), that the visual spectacle is stripped from the performance so a performer that only provides spectacle actually provides nothing to the music itself.

Of course those people must be tortured until they repent their sins of demanding actual musical talent and skill in musicians and praise the holy temple of commercial homogeneity, before being executed for the good of all.
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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby podbaydoor » Wed Apr 13, 2011 7:49 pm UTC

Some talented musicians have terrible stage presence. Too awkward, or a pretentious asshole, or penchant for rambling diatribes, or any number of failings. Listening to someone's record and going to see them perform require different sensory experiences and demands. I'm not demanding Britney & Ilk's pop juggernaut as the ideal, but I can see the reason why someone with polished showmanship has a place in the music industry.
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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby Dauric » Wed Apr 13, 2011 8:43 pm UTC

podbaydoor wrote:Some talented musicians have terrible stage presence. Too awkward, or a pretentious asshole, or penchant for rambling diatribes, or any number of failings. Listening to someone's record and going to see them perform require different sensory experiences and demands. I'm not demanding Britney & Ilk's pop juggernaut as the ideal, but I can see the reason why someone with polished showmanship has a place in the music industry.


I'm not saying that polished showmanship has no place in the music industry, but showmanship alone isn't enough any more than musical talent with no showmanship is. Unfortunately the vogue thing is, or rather has-been, to build engineering that replaces musical ability so that the focus is on the showmanship. I'd argue that the recent growth of the "Indie" and "Local" band movements is because the RIAA juggernauts have moved too far to "showmanship" and the strategy is backfiring. Unfortunately the RIAA blames piracy, and not their industry practices, and it's been some of the performers that have been the first in their industry to complain about the use of Auto Tune and excessive production.
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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby Dream » Wed Apr 13, 2011 10:02 pm UTC

++$_ wrote:As a classical musician, I am shocked to hear that all these pop singers just perform works written by other people, sometimes even putting their names on the front of the album and giving the actual composer a relatively small share of the credit. I mean, that's our job.

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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby Triangle_Man » Thu Apr 14, 2011 1:02 am UTC

podbaydoor wrote:Some talented musicians have terrible stage presence. Too awkward, or a pretentious asshole, or penchant for rambling diatribes, or any number of failings. Listening to someone's record and going to see them perform require different sensory experiences and demands. I'm not demanding Britney & Ilk's pop juggernaut as the ideal, but I can see the reason why someone with polished showmanship has a place in the music industry.


That's probably true.

Nowadays, presentation is just as important, if not moreso, then actual talent.
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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby Griffin » Thu Apr 14, 2011 2:17 am UTC

Nowadays nothing. That's always been true.
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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby CorruptUser » Thu Apr 14, 2011 3:43 am UTC

Frank Zappa said it best; "classical" music was only popular because the same orchestra learned the same songs, and it was easier to play those songs without constantly learning new ones (or paying royalties on new songs). People accepted old songs, because they lived in a time when it was a luxury to hear any music at all.

Here is some of his musings on classical music. Kind of boring though.

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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby sje46 » Thu Apr 14, 2011 1:34 pm UTC

Do we expect actors to write their own lines?
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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby Dauric » Thu Apr 14, 2011 2:39 pm UTC

sje46 wrote:Do we expect actors to write their own lines?


No, but we should expect them to have some skill with body language, facial expression, voice tone... y'know.. "Acting", rather than just be a pretty face that 3D artists layer on to a computer generated model that takes it's action input from a generic set of physical action instructions.*

*Not that they're using generic motion inputs in film today (Games... some are), but with Auto Tune the celebrity doesn't even have to be able to actually sing, and I find that analogous.
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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby sje46 » Thu Apr 14, 2011 2:52 pm UTC

Dauric wrote:
sje46 wrote:Do we expect actors to write their own lines?


No, but we should expect them to have some skill with body language, facial expression, voice tone... y'know.. "Acting", rather than just be a pretty face that 3D artists layer on to a computer generated model that takes it's action input from a generic set of physical action instructions.*
Okay, but all those things are by definition acting. You don't have to write a song in order to sing it well.
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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby Griffin » Thu Apr 14, 2011 2:55 pm UTC

But it still seems a bit wrong to say the song is "by" you if you haven't written it and didn't even provide the bulk of the music.

We don't say "Now showing: Con-air, by Nicolas Cage!"

Maybe we should have "Toxic, starring Brittany Spears!" to make it obvious what their role is.
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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby broken_escalator » Thu Apr 14, 2011 2:58 pm UTC

Or what about "Toxic, performed by Brittany Spears!"

Then we could even refer to it in short hand as "Toxic, performed by Brittany Spears!"

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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby uncivlengr » Thu Apr 14, 2011 3:25 pm UTC

If Britney's only involvement in her album was showing up for the photo shoot for the cover art, then you can't criticize her for not doing things that weren't her responsibility. Sure, a lot of good bands follow the singer-songwriter model, but it's one model, not a rule.
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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby Dream » Thu Apr 14, 2011 4:20 pm UTC

Griffin wrote:But it still seems a bit wrong to say the song is "by" you if you haven't written it and didn't even provide the bulk of the music.

Is she saying that? The understanding is that sleeve art and promotional material is about the performer, not the writer. Kicking Against The Pricks is by Nick Cave and The Bad Seeds, even though every song is written by someone else. A song that is written "for" somebody is reckoned to be "theirs" even though they didn't write it, and the possessive doesn't imply creation, like the way an "Etta James song" was actually written by Berry Gordy. Britney isn't doing anything that wasn't done by all the Chess and Motown artists, and a very large number of rock performers too.
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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby cerbie » Fri Apr 15, 2011 11:32 am UTC

sje46 wrote:Do we expect actors to write their own lines?
Maybe not, but some great movie quotes have not been in the scripts.

The real problem is that the stars are products, and really aren't even allowed to just appear to be performers, even if that's what they really are. A good voice and stage presence is fine, if everyone understands that you're a singer and/or actor. There's nothing wrong with that. Notice how all the bitching goes to our recent rounds of airheaded pop stars, yet those that have been around awhile, that everybody knows don't write crap (st least not the popular crap), also don't get any shit for it. Kylie Minogue is the first that comes to mind. However, has there been a time that these people said themselves, or that it was greatly implied, that they were more than performers?

When they have a stage presence, and enough PR behind them to keep them in the news, and nothing much else of value, yet are implied to be superhuman, there's a something fishy. Creative works don't happen in a vacuum, and most individuals that try to do it all suck, compared to working with others, even greats like Eric Clapton (especially Eric Clapton--he sucks solo, but is so good when it's not him behind the wheel). The stars are marketed, however, as if they actually have created much more than they have, and as though they could stand on their own, when the reality is that there's no chance in Hell they could. It's also no uncommon for them to at least come off as egotists, when asked about things like the songs. The problem is really the soulless marketing machines behind them, but they get they get the brunt of the criticism.
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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby Zamfir » Fri Apr 15, 2011 12:21 pm UTC

cerbie, I don't think it is fair to single it out for being a "soulless marketing machine". Most companies are somewhat soulless machines, especially if they grow larger. Lots and lots of thing we value were cranked out by soulless organizations. That's the mostly unavoidable effect of large numbers of people cooperating. I suspect that the organization behind Britney Sears is not particularly "soulless" compared to most companies, probably the opposite.

To a large extent, the problem is us, not them. We have far more ease identifying with a person than with an organization. And as a result we like to replace large combined efforts with individuals, in our mind. So you get Neil Armstrong or Steve Jobs or Alexej Stachanov, faces to represent the anonymous machine.

In entertainment that identification becomes so important that we often really need a personal touch to enjoy the effort. So stage personalities are important, and they get a disproportionate share of the credit. That's true for Britney Spears, but also for most lead singers of bands, or movie stars, or really even movie directors.

Lots of good music was written by dull grey writers and composers in office blocks, and a lot of other music would be better if the dull but experienced people had some more input in it. We, pretty much all of us, don't really like that. We want our artists to be a bit heroic, or at least a bit special. But that's a weakness of us, not of the dull men in the offices. If they solve that by hiring extravagant people as company face, they're just trying to give us what we want.

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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby uncivlengr » Fri Apr 15, 2011 12:38 pm UTC

cerbie wrote:The stars are marketed, however, as if they actually have created much more than they have, and as though they could stand on their own, when the reality is that there's no chance in Hell they could.
You mean Britney Spears doesn't have a posse of dancers and pyrotechnics backing her up when she goes to rent a video at Blockbuster? She doesn't wear glittery bathing suits when she goes to the mall on a Saturday morning? You mean to say that it's her job, along with many others behind the scenes, to put on a sensational show for the entertainment of her fans that includes a "larger than life" presence and doesn't necessarily constitute an autobiographical account of her life or a documentary on the daily workings of the music industry?

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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby cerbie » Fri Apr 15, 2011 1:09 pm UTC

Zamfir wrote:cerbie, I don't think it is fair to single it out for being a "soulless marketing machine". Most companies are somewhat soulless machines, especially if they grow larger. Lots and lots of thing we value were cranked out by soulless organizations. That's the mostly unavoidable effect of large numbers of people cooperating. I suspect that the organization behind Britney Sears is not particularly "soulless" compared to most companies, probably the opposite.
Except we generally want artistic expression to not be soulless, while we don't care if our appliances and such are.

To a large extent, the problem is us, not them. We have far more ease identifying with a person than with an organization. And as a result we like to replace large combined efforts with individuals, in our mind. So you get Neil Armstrong or Steve Jobs or Alexej Stachanov, faces to represent the anonymous machine.

In entertainment that identification becomes so important that we often really need a personal touch to enjoy the effort. So stage personalities are important, and they get a disproportionate share of the credit. That's true for Britney Spears, but also for most lead singers of bands, or movie stars, or really even movie directors.

Lots of good music was written by dull grey writers and composers in office blocks, and a lot of other music would be better if the dull but experienced people had some more input in it. We, pretty much all of us, don't really like that. We want our artists to be a bit heroic, or at least a bit special. But that's a weakness of us, not of the dull men in the offices. If they solve that by hiring extravagant people as company face, they're just trying to give us what we want.
I don't disagree too much with that. I think it's how much the person at the front (the star) is made to be a near Christ-like figure, that they can't live up to, and how much the people working with them behind the scenes are able to be ignored (why is the population at large not concerned with those people?). But, those behind them don't really support them, either, so much as use them, and these people are ushered in at impressionable ages, so are pretty well fucked by the time they can figure it out. It's not really black and white, but that the entertainment industry has started to go a little too far in the last decade or two.

Steve Jobs is an egotistical control freak, who seems to be excellent at causing himself harm by work-related stress.
Neil Armstrong, while a face of Apollo 11, has never been seen as the only one that made it work.
I don't know enough about Stakhanov, really.

In general, most people are understood to be limited and imperfect, and do not have personal marketing behind them to try to make them appear without weakness. Britney Spears was used by Disney, then made into a pop idol of an impossible nature: as mentally non-sexual (as a teenager :roll:), yet with an image of sexuality for the sake of selling her. Those selling this human product are not in light, but back in the shadows. Not just that they don't come on stage, but that you have to look to find them. When the human got exposed as not fitting them image, those that made and used that image are safe, while she isn't. She's easy to point to to blame. She was not allowed to be viewed as the person she was, but as the product others wanted her to be, for as long as they could milk it. She's hardly a lone example, either, just a good one because she managed to freak out so publicly, several years ago, yet recover some sanity, rather than just fade away and become a druggie.

It's a bit beyond finding someone who has the potential to be exceptional at something, and guiding them into that, that they may sell their talent, skill, and experience. It's going all-in to take a person that may be exceptional at something, and turning their general being into a salable product, which can be discontinued and replaced. There is not a clear differentiation between what the person is, and what the image is, and image is of far greater capability, and unrealistically idealized in about every way. By the time the person realizes what's going on, if they ever really do, the public perception of them is generally too mixed up between the person's real abilities and personality, and the image they were sold as.
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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby cerbie » Fri Apr 15, 2011 1:14 pm UTC

uncivlengr wrote:
cerbie wrote:The stars are marketed, however, as if they actually have created much more than they have, and as though they could stand on their own, when the reality is that there's no chance in Hell they could.
You mean Britney Spears doesn't have a posse of dancers and pyrotechnics backing her up when she goes to rent a video at Blockbuster? She doesn't wear glittery bathing suits when she goes to the mall on a Saturday morning? You mean to say that it's her job, along with many others behind the scenes, to put on a sensational show for the entertainment of her fans that includes a "larger than life" presence and doesn't necessarily constitute an autobiographical account of her life or a documentary on the daily workings of the music industry?

My worldview has been utterly shattered.
:lol:
Not merely that, but that she is not the greatest ever choreographer, singer, songwriter, erotic dancer, and 'wholesome' happily-repressed-WASP-girl all rolled into one. Even with all that being unrealistic, before they crash, it becomes difficult to discern where the production ends, and the person begins, because every aspect of their image is so controlled, that they have a very limited capability to be themselves. When caught up in it so young, I wouldn't be surprised if they can't really tell where the line is, themselves, for awhile.
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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby Zamfir » Fri Apr 15, 2011 2:22 pm UTC

Steve Jobs is an egotistical control freak, who seems to be excellent at causing himself harm by work-related stress.
Neil Armstrong, while a face of Apollo 11, has never been seen as the only one that made it work.
I don't know enough about Stakhanov, really.

I think they are interesting because it shows that we do actually want a soul in other stuff than music, it's just that other things often lack a logical place to put that soul. The lesson kids picked up from Apollo was to become an astronaut, not a mid-level industrial bureaucrat. Even the grown-ups paid a fortune to have a man on the moon instead of a just as decent robot. NASA spend lots of effort on making it look as if excellent superstar pilots were an important part of their space ships, instead of payload. The magic works even on people who know it's not real.

And Apple does sell appliances after all, and at least part of their succesful marketing is to suggest that there is this single guy who is such a control freak that you can notice his personal touch in all the appliances they sell. That works because it is least somewhat true, and it is clearly hard for other firms to fake a similar personal touch. But I think a lot of other firms would love to have an equally believable face for their products, it's just that you cannot hire a random charismatic person and make it seem as if they are the dirver of the product.

Artists like Britney are mostly aimed at a younger audience, the audience that wants to be an astronaut so to speak. Who are not quite aware of the machinery. You can clearly see the age where kids do start to see the machinery more clearly, somewhere in high school usually. They start passionately to be into "more real" music, and against "fake". The face trick only works as long as the face seems an important part.

For older demographs, they have more serious artists who really are more part of the process, even if there are stil session musicians and producers and managers and technicians and god knows who in the shadows. But as classical music shows, the "realness" of artists who write their own songs and sing about their personal things is a bit arbitrary. In a sense, it's just as much marketing as Britney.

It's simply useful to have artists who are both important for the music and good stage personalities. It gives you a clear marketable brand, without faking. But it's not necessarily the best for music.

cerbie wrote:In general, most people are understood to be limited and imperfect, and do not have personal marketing behind them to try to make them appear without weakness. Britney Spears was used by Disney, then made into a pop idol of an impossible nature: as mentally non-sexual (as a teenager :roll:), yet with an image of sexuality for the sake of selling her. Those selling this human product are not in light, but back in the shadows. Not just that they don't come on stage, but that you have to look to find them. When the human got exposed as not fitting them image, those that made and used that image are safe, while she isn't. She's easy to point to to blame. She was not allowed to be viewed as the person she was, but as the product others wanted her to be, for as long as they could milk it. She's hardly a lone example, either, just a good one because she managed to freak out so publicly, several years ago, yet recover some sanity, rather than just fade away and become a druggie.


I'd say a lot of the problem here is using a kid, or young impressionable people in general. That's bad, but I don't think it is related to the superficiality of her role in the process. There are lots of more involved artists, or athletes for example, who burn through and out just as badly. Janis Joplin ended up far worse than Britney.

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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby uncivlengr » Fri Apr 15, 2011 6:41 pm UTC

cerbie wrote:Even with all that being unrealistic, before they crash, it becomes difficult to discern where the production ends, and the person begins, because every aspect of their image is so controlled, that they have a very limited capability to be themselves.
I think it's presumptuous to say that you need to know anything more about Britney Spears than she or her marketing team decides to reveal to you, and again, it's incorrect to assert that music (or any other form of entertainment) necessarily needs to be autobiographical. If she desired to be a so-called "real" artist and not just the face associated with a business, she could have moved to Portland and joined an indie band, or whatever qualifies as "real" music this week.

If anything, I think celebrities reveal too much of their personal lives to the public, Britney Spears being an obvious example of this.
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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby Dauric » Fri Apr 15, 2011 7:11 pm UTC

uncivlengr wrote:
cerbie wrote:Even with all that being unrealistic, before they crash, it becomes difficult to discern where the production ends, and the person begins, because every aspect of their image is so controlled, that they have a very limited capability to be themselves.
I think it's presumptuous to say that you need to know anything more about Britney Spears than she or her marketing team decides to reveal to you, and again, it's incorrect to assert that music (or any other form of entertainment) necessarily needs to be autobiographical. If she desired to be a so-called "real" artist and not just the face associated with a business, she could have moved to Portland and joined an indie band, or whatever qualifies as "real" music this week.

If anything, I think celebrities reveal too much of their personal lives to the public, Britney Spears being an obvious example of this.


Because she's an obvious example her name becomes a pseudonym for industry practices. I think placing specific criticisms on any particular artist be is Ms. Spears, Beyonce, Mr. Beiber, etc. etc. etc. is a poor choice of topics to criticize. If anything criticizing any one individual is criticizing someone for trying to stay competitive in their chosen industry.

I do think that it's valid to criticize the industry for any number of reasons, overexposing their product's personal lives (and/or private body-parts) in an effort to generate cheap marketing being one of the larger complaints. I think the criticism about songwriting is ill-thought out as an argument, but comes from an irritation with an increasing "Synthetic Celebrity" industry, where the "Rock Star" can't actually "Rock" without a team of engineers to push the buttons.
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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby Joeldi » Sat Apr 16, 2011 10:49 am UTC

I like Mark Ronson, the writer who gets other people to perform his music but takes the credit for his work.
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Re: Britney doesn't write own songs, songwriter says "Duh"

Postby thicknavyrain » Sat Apr 16, 2011 12:03 pm UTC

I demand Chris Crocker's view on the situation...

To be honest, so long as songwriters are fully aware of what credit and money they'll be receiving, it's basically "what do we think people want" which is so damn hard to tell.

Besides, we all have Jonathon Coulton to thank for great song writing and good performance skills...
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