Tag Archives: Katy Perry

Worst Music of the Week – “Roar” by Katy Perry

1 Sep
Turn it of. Turn it off!

Turn it of. Turn it off!

The content on this website focuses almost entirely on melodious music. We are melody freaks at the Music Court. It makes sense, doesn’t it? We are a music blog? Why would you all want to read about terrible tunes? Well…for all of those who are self-deprecating or interested in a few cheap laughs, welcome to the brand new Music Court category – Worst Music of the Week. And what’s the best way to introduce this category? With Katy Perry’s new single, of course!

Yes, this gem is #2 on the charts right now, and it is barking on the door of Billboard Top Hit. Why? Well, an obsessively devoted fan base can do that for you. But, still, popularity is by no means a metric of a “good song.” While my judgments are inherently subjective, I can safely say that “Roar” is a cruddy song. I will look beyond the claims that “Roar” is particularly similar to “Brave” by Sara Bareilles because, let’s be honest, most songs today sound alike.

Here is my issue with the song. It immediately gives off the feel of a cheesy reproduction of a OneRepublic song. Not to mention, at around 0:30, Perry’s vocal sounds conspicuously like “Ho Hey” by The Lumineers. The constant percussion and keyboard stroke is just so conventional and easy. Look, I understand it makes money, but, come on, put a little bit of effort into the verse. The culmination of electronic instruments at the chorus is simply lazy and overdone. If not for Perry’s changing vocal inflection when she sings roar in the chorus,  the chorus sounds like, I don’t know, just about most other Katy Perry songs. Do songwriters think the mainstream public will just eat up everything it vomits out like a confused dog? Well…yeah, because it does. It’s not difficult to pass a successful song through the Billboard charts today. Catchy, consistent beat. Choral climax. A ridiculous repetitive bridge with rising moans, and a final diapason of choral repetition – numerous overlaid tracks of the singer repeating the chorus. It’s pop music 101. Does that mean it’s bad? Not necessarily. It’s just that this particular Katy Perry single is such reproduced garbage that it needs to be knocked down a peg. The single is catchy and simple, though, and it comes to no surprise that when packaged with Perry it is a huge hit and the new flavor of the week among the tween population.

And the lyrics…

I got the eye of the tiger, a fighter,
dancing through the fire
Cause I am a champion and
You’re gonna hear me ROAR

I will say that they are at least positive and motivational. Gosh, though, the lyric is impressively corny. Like scribbled down while watching a 80’s Rocky sequel corny. Heck, it could be worse. It could be Miley Cyrus twerking.


American Idol Switch (For Better or Worse?). Who Will Judge Next?

16 Jul

If American Idol was a version of its reality show counterpart, Survivor, Ryan Seacrest may have just won the competition. The Fox singing competition has certainly transformed since it premiered in 2002. Long-term judges Simon Cowell and Paula Abdul left the show two years ago to pursue other endeavors (The X Factor), and the Idol producers quickly scooped up Aerosmith leadman Steven Tyler and pop superstar Jennifer Lopez. After two seasons of the new judge configuration, Lopez and Tyler are out, and even steadfast Randy Jackson, who I think has become a bit of a tired act, may leave the judges table. In that case, the producers are going to have their hands full refilling a table of musical talking heads to sit behind the prominent Pepsi cups.

Randy Jackson’s departure is not official, but it could certainly happen. I believe that is time to cut ways with Jackson’s dog house and “in it to win it.” He attempted to take the role of Simon Cowell’s honest critic, but he provided inconsistent commentary and criticism.

Who would be the ideal crew to judge? It’s a difficult choice. The show’s viewership has steadily declined and gotten older. That suggests that American Idol may have a loyal base, but the show is not attracting the 13-year-old screaming girl subgroup. After a relatively unsuccessful first season, The X Factor shedded judges Paul Abdul and Nicole Scherzinger in favor of the younger Demi Lovato and superstar Britney Spears. The show went younger in order to attract younger viewers. That is a good strategy, but, like all things, there needs to be homeostasis. I think The X Factor will demonstrate a rise in viewership this year (especially if they choose a good host).

What does American Idol need? It needs a mixture. If I was given the responsibility of choosing a panel, I would start with an anchor that loyal Idol fans have been calling for since he premiered as an advisor, Jimmy Iovine. He was perhaps the only judge of talent that consistently made sense during last season. He would be the knowledgeable record producer who could help steer young musicians. His role of advisor would only transform slightly. Would he want to be judge? I don’t know, but if he expressed any interest in the position he would be my first choice.

I would then choose a young idol whom everyone would recognize (much like the X-Factor did with Britney Spears), and an older, more experienced musician who knows the industry well and has had a ton of success. The older judge would naturally attract an older population of music fans.

Mariah Carey has been a name floated out there and she would certainly fit the motherly older judge. Aretha Franklin reportedly sent an e-mail to CNN saying she wanted in on American Idol season 12. I would be overjoyed if American Idol let the Queen of Soul sit on the panel. She is not an idol. She is a legend. She also seems like she would give kind, but truthful advice to the contestants.

As for the younger judge, musicians like Katy Perry and Nicki Minaj have been propositioned. I’ve also heard Miley Cyrus. At this point, people could simply be shouting out reasonable names. Since money is no concern for the super-show, the judgeship could come down to whoever accepts the necessary time commitment. I think the show would be happiest with Katy Perry. She is at the peak of her popularity and is beloved by teenage girls. But would Perry even be interested? If she is, Idol producers better scoop her up. I think an outside musician would be better than bringing in Jennifer Hudson or Adam Lambert (two Idol alumni). Long time friend of the Idol stage, will.i.am would also be a good choice, but he currently is involved with the Voice UK. Lady Gaga…that would certainly turn the show into a spectacle. I don’t think she has been mentioned because I don’t think there would be a chance of hooking her.

Who do you want to see judge the show?

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