For the Last Time, Rihanna is Not Speaking Jamaican Patois In ‘Work’

If you’re a living organism that has walked the earth in the past month, you’ve probably heard the number one song in the country, “Work,” by Rihanna and Drake. The pair have been lauded for their chemistry and it’s pretty clear this duo is truly unstoppable when they join forces (for the greater good). But there’s an issue all these thinkpieces have been missing about the song. Rihanna is not speaking in Jamaican patois, cuz ya know, she’s Bajan. She’s speaking Bajan creole.

Don’t get me wrong, I love when pop culture embraces the Caribbean world. And I’m so happy to see island music being celebrated when performed by someone from that culture, instead of opportunistic stars in search of capitalizing off the latest pop music trend. For Rihanna, this sound is no trend, it’s her life.

However, it’s not okay to homogenize all Caribbean culture into Jamaica. And this is coming from someone who’s family is Jamaican. As someone of Caribbean descent, I want to hear people talking about Trini’s, Bajans, Guyanese people! Because a win for them is a win for all of us. HOWEVER, they are all not the same. Yes, there is a common thread that holds them together, but let’s not act like Rihanna has not been in the game for well over a decade. We know she’s not from Jamaica. Learn about her country. It’s beautiful.

To the average American who has not interacted with Caribbeans often, they may hear Rihanna and not recognize the difference between her accent and any other Caribbean’s. And that’s okay. But for all you “writers” crafting up these mighty, mighty thinkpieces, no excuses for you!

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Kelly Clarkson’s Cover of ‘Bitch Better Have My Money’ is the Best Thing You’ll Hear All Day

Is today Sunday, because Kelly Clarkson just took a borderline-perfect trap song into a soulful hymn. Rihanna’s sassed up single, ‘Bitch Better Have My Money’ is perfect for the club, but Kelly pulls off the perfect lounge cover in ‘Bitch Y’all Better Have My Money.’ Added bonus, no cussing, so it’s perfect 4 da kidz. Check it out!

Eight Withdrawals Symptoms Due to the Wait for #R8

Rihanna. Pop queen. Chart-topping musician. Leader of the galaxy. We’ve all been waiting for #R8 and Rihanna has told us time and time again that we will get it when it’s ready. She’s beginning to sound like every Caribbean mom that hits you with a wooden spoon when you ask her when’s dinner ready for the fifth time. Who knows when she’ll drop this album. It could be tomorrow, it could be October [Rihanna-ween]. One thing’s for sure, the wait has been painful. Here are some of the side effects of a Rihanna-less life.

1. Hungerrihanna-gif-03It’s been so long. We just want something sweet!

2. AngerRihanna-angry-2 Rih, where have you been? We need this album. The whole thing. All of it. Come through!

3.  Loss of Breathtumblr_miacu7bhaf1rodv21o1_500Sometimes it’s easy to forget to breathe when all you want is American Oxygen on a full-length LP.

4. Indifferencegiphy It’s whatever. It’s just music. It’s just an album. I’m over it, Rih. Forget you!

5. Feargiphy (1)Did Rihanna see my mean tweets about me not caring? Or how about my incessant Instagram comments? I hope she doesn’t see them and drag me with an iconic clapback?

5. Thirsttumblr_lx6zbo3LXA1r4kficWe are thirsty. Replenish us, Robyn! This pop music drought is serious.

6. Confusionanigif_enhanced-11075-1411411562-9Alright, girl. It’s been a minute. What’s going on? You don’t want my monies?

7. Hope + Faith. Haith.hopeIt’s gonna come. Some day. And that alone is good enough?

8. AssurancerihannabadyoumadiguessWhenever it comes, it’s going to be AMAZING and outshine every insignificant flop star that put out music this decade.

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Ms. Fenty would never put out a basic album. She needs to make sure it has zero flaws.

 

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But can we flash forward to the booty shaking when we first listen?

Pop Music and Potential Employers, Come and Get It

By Chris McPherson

Good music is something ubiquitous. Turn on your radio. Plug in your TV. Or just hop on YouTube for something to jam out to. But meaningful music can be hard to find.

Songs like Rihanna’s We Found Love make you wanna spin around in circles in euphoric motion for hours and never get dizzy or nauseous. Other tunes like Macklemore’s Thrift Shop may invoke an urgency to find the nearest vehicle you have the keys to and drive down a significant boulevard, while singing the lyrics like you’re wearing pre-owned clothes with questionable odors. While Pink’s Just Give Me a Reason may bring up some serious feelings that you can only express in an empty room full of pillows, ice cream and a television playing Reba reruns for hours (which in fact does happen everyday – she’s a survivor). But enough of country star Reba’s magnificent reign on daytime cable tv. Songs with meaning make you feel something.

Screenshot from music video

Selena Gomez, sometimes referred to as Sellie G, Beibs’ Baby Mama, and Disney Princess # 3, released her new song, Come & Get It, a couple weeks ago. It’s safe to call the single a “hit,” since it landed on the Billboard Hot 100’s top ten last week at number six, her highest peaking single to date. I will say this infectious tune, pickled in seduction, but somehow marinated in sex appeal, has been a guilty pleasure of mine. But where is the meaning? How does this apply to my life? I mean, I don’t have someone I can encourage to “come and get it.” I mean, I could probably write a song called “I’ve been ready, does anyone want it?”

So I sat down and tried to understand the deeper meaning behind this song. Was there a hidden allegorical thread behind these lyrics. Maybe there was a speck of symbolism within the three minutes and fifty-two seconds of pop gold. Then I thought, “Eureka, I’ve got it.” No I didn’t. But I did find that the song could serve as an anthem for the thousands of college students who are now out searching for jobs.

If you are one of these people, tell those search committees, recruiters and HR professionals, “so baby whenever you’re ready [insert five seconds of ‘ayy’].” At the end of my next job interview, right after I say goodbye, but before I leave the room, I’m gonna say, “When you ready come and get it.” Then say “na na na na” as I walk away.

When Senorita Gomez says, “When you ready come and get it,” “it” is clearly a metaphor for the hard work and dedication you plan to bring to the potential employer and/or company. Duh!

So thanks Selena, you’ve got the world dancing, and the job seekers thinking. Who doesn’t want a new employee who knows how to sing seductive lyrics to them. When you hit your interviewer with the “come hither” eyes, make sure they know you mean business. On a resume that skill can easily be filed as “persuasive mindset” or “strong communications skills.”

Thus, next time you hear Selena’s new jam, think, “will this song get me hired.” And then immediately answer yourself (it’s okay this one time because I told you so) “Yes. Yes, it will.”

“I’m not too shy to get your coffee, I got no regrets” – Come & Get It (Workforce Remix)

That’s So 2012

By Chris McPherson

Yes, it’s been a while since 2012, but I recently had to provide my three favorite songs of 2012 for an internship application and it really got me thinking about my music interests. i figured I’d share my top 3.

 
Rita Ora had an interesting debut in 2012, with the Rihanna comparisons, How We Do’s highly anticipated, and yet moderate success, and let’s not forget her debut album’s lack of release in the United States. With all of this, Radioactive was a gem on her album, Ora. It’s only right that music genius,Sia, co wrote this song, because it puts me on top of the world when it pounds through my headphones. The line Palms to the sky was my anthem near the end of summer 2012. Despite the fact that it was never released in the U.S. and barely promoted in the UK, this song’s potential will forever light up 2012 for me.
 
 
Rihanna made the world dance in 2010 and 2011. We were all relieved that she seemed to be in a better place after dark and gritty, Rated R. But I loved Diamonds because it reminded me that Rihanna has a way of truly pulling in her audience. Yes, We Found Love had me bouncing up and down in the club, but Diamonds meant something more than a nice beat and breathy vocals. Regardless of her relationship status this week, next week, or next month, those lyrics were rock solid emotion. RihGold.
 
 
 
To me, Beez in the Trap wasn’t just a homage to the hypothetical life of a successful and equally ambitious drug trafficker, it was hip hop gold. Crossover appeal for mainstream artists is one of the most coveted things in the pop world, so for Nicki Minaj to release a song like this right after she sang Starships were meant to fly was impressive in my book.

 

New Artist Alert: Beldina

By Chris McPherson

After a light scan of the blogosphere, today I discovered Beldina. If you troll music blogs daily, you’ll find tons of up-and-coming artists trying to get their music heard. They’ll promote their twitter/facebook page, music on their “official” youtube, and maybe even an Instagram, but personally it takes something special for me to make that click and check an artist out. Beldina managed to do that.

What Can I Say Album Artwork

Beldina just released her new single What Can I Say. A quick google search shows the Swedish singer has been around for a little while: a few songs on Myspace here, a youtube video there, but this new single seems like the beginning of a hard debut for this girl. After a couple plays on repeat I have some mixed feelings toward the single.  By this I don’t mean on whether or not I like it. It’s definitely a solid song, and well-produced. The song uses a diverse array of genres which has me wondering what kind  is to be expected of Ms. Beldina in terms of future music, and dare i say a full length studio album.

The song felt like a mainstream atempt at pop/r&b infused with hip hop. Beldina manages to sing the majority of the song in a soft falsetto coated in a hip hop bass undertone, but somehow supported by some heavy piano keys worked in the middle. There also seems to be some interesting call-outs of a man shouting the title “What Can I Say” throughout the song that felt like a homage to old school 80s rap. All of these different musical elements make it difficult to pinpoint the direction she is headed. Will she use those strong vocals into a pop career like Rihanna, or will she remain in the shadows of R&B like Chrisette Michele. Don’t get me wrong, Michele is a great vocalist, but top 40 is something she’s shied away from. I would say she has the potential to get some radio play in the United States.

I will say it is about time that a African American musician rise from the ashes of the once-chart topping divas of music past. The Ciara’s, Ashanti’s and Keyshia Cole’s cry from the graves of their past success. Don’t get me wrong, those women are/were great in their own right, but they have definitly lost some steam along the way. It was beginning to seem like we were living in a world where only Beyonce and Rihanna could survive as pillars of black songtresses. I was compelled to name Kelly Rowland, but nah.

You can get your own opinion of Beldina at her twitter page @Beldina and her single What Can I Say is below.