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A Theme Song and a Call For Some Competition

Today I was listening to some music, or to put it as the kids do these days, I was listening to my iPod.  At the same time I was checking over the response to my latest Tiger vs. Gorilla post, and that’s when I got an idea: give the blog a theme song!  Hey, why not?  Wrestlers have theme songs.  Radio talk show hosts have theme songs.  Kars for Kids has a theme song. (pretty sure that’s playing on an endless loop in hell) This blog should have one too.

I chose one song that does a good job of capturing the essence of this blog.  But before I could decide, I had to narrow it down to three.  Here are the first two that I almost chose.

I initially wanted to use a Muse song since they’re my favorite band, and this song touches on many aspects of the blog.  You’ve got a plea to destroy the delusions that wall us in, which is really a desire for the truth.  I’m a fan of truth, and when I write I’m often searching for it or communicating it.  But in the end I couldn’t use it because it was a little too intense.  The tone doesn’t quite capture the lighter side of my blog.  Plus there is a line that goes, “Justify my reasons with your blood.”  That’s the opposite of what I’m trying to do.

Truthfully, this song crossed my mind even though I despise John Mayer.    “Say what you need to say” is simple, but very true.  “Do it with your heart wide open” would have been a nice touch.  But in the end I couldn’t get past my annoyance and I couldn’t choose a song that repeats the same six words over thirty times.

Now to the one that I finally chose to be the official theme song of the blog.

Perfect!

On to the second thing I wanted to talk about.

I was speaking with Nicole about a week ago and we stumbled upon an interesting idea.  What if there was someone who thought the opposite of the way I do, and that person posted a blog?  You know, they hate Cadbury eggs and think Bill Cosby is lame.  They hate God and love John Mayer.  Everything I stand for, they stand against.  And what if that person attracted the same readers?  And what if we responded to each other on a regular basis?   Wouldn’t that be great?  Seriously, that would be fantastic. Nothing motivates like some good competition.

For that reason, I’m calling you out!  Say what you need to say, and show me what your city of delusion is built of.  There’s plenty of room for competing ideas, so let’s make this a full house.

California Gurls: A Floozy in Candyland

The following music video may be inappropriate for all viewers.  But, for our purposes today, I want you to watch the whole thing.  Consider this Part Three in my analysis of modern popular music.

I give you Katy Perry’s  California Gurls.


California Gurls

(Why does everything have to be spelled wrong?  What’s a gurl? When I search online I find that it means a young person of either sex. But the real dictionary doesn’t seem to know anything about it.  So I guess we can assume that gurls means girls.)

[Snoop Dogg]
Greetings loved ones
Let’s take a journey

(Snoop seems to be the one in control of things.  He is the one rolling the dice and he has a pimp cane.  He is also giant compared to Katy Perry.  Who are the loved ones?  What is the journey?  I think we are the loved ones and the journey is the song.)

[Katy Perry]
I know a place
Where the grass is really greener
Warm, wet and wild
There must be something in the water
Sippin’ gin and juice
Laying underneath the palm trees
(Undone)
The boys break their necks
Tryin’ to creep a little sneak peek
(At us)

(We are in a Candyland.  Katy Perry appears as an innocent child in a place that a child would probably picture as paradise.  Very quickly she meets some unsavory Gummi bears and gets flipped off.  All the while Snoop is rolling the dice and apparently running the show.  If you look at the lyrics, sippin gin and warm, wet, and wild aren’t things you’d associate with childhood innocence.  Nevertheless, they are juxtaposed with the imagery of purity.  Also, the “boys break their necks” in an attempt to see some female flesh.  This is important, since one of the major themes in the song is female dominance through sexual manipulation.  No way!)

You could travel the world
But nothing comes close to the Golden Coast
Once you party with us
You’ll be falling in love
(Oh, oh-oh, oh-oh, oh-oh)

California gurls, we’re unforgettable
Daisy dukes, bikinis on top
Sun-kissed skin, so hot, will melt your popsicle
(Oh-oh, oh-oh, oh)
(Oh, oh-oh, oh-oh, oh-oh)
California gurls, we’re undeniable
Fine, fresh, fierce, we got it on lock
West Coast represent, now put your hands up
(Oh-oh, oh-oh, oh)
(Oh, oh-oh, oh-oh, oh-oh)

(In the video, candy canes turn to snakes.  Snakes are archetypes for evil (as seen in the Garden of Eden story).  At first Katy Perry appears concerned, but then she climbs up one of them into the clouds.  At least two things can be gathered by this.  The first is that Katy Perry is losing (or has lost) her innocence.  The second is that she is both giving in and attempting to dominate the snakes by climbing them.  Once she reaches the clouds she is completely naked in a sort of inverse to the Garden of Eden story.  In the Bible they are shamed of their nakedness after succumbing to sin, but in Katy Perry’s music video she seems to be embracing her nakedness.     Also, a melting popscicle as a result of their hotness, followed by the words, “now put your hands up”.  Once again, sexual imagery indicating feminine dominance through sexual manipulation.)

Sex on a beach

We don’t mind sand in our Stilettos
We freak, in my jeep
Snoop Doggy Dogg is on the stereo

(This is pretty clear.  Sex on the beach.  Sex in a jeep.  And, Snoop is on the stereo while this is going on.)

You could travel the world
But nothing comes close to the Golden Coast
Once you party with us
You’ll be falling in love
(Oh, oh-oh, oh-oh, oh-oh)

(At this point Katy and her friends dress up like girl scouts and gather around a gingerbread man.  Once he appears aroused by their proximity, they begin to consume him until he is in pieces on the ground.)

California gurls, we’re unforgettable
Daisy dukes, bikinis on top
Sun-kissed skin, so hot, will melt your popsicle
(Oh-oh, oh-oh, oh)
(Oh, oh-oh, oh-oh, oh-oh)
California gurls, we’re undeniable
Fine, fresh, fierce, we got it on lock
West Coast represent, now put your hands up
(Oh-oh, oh-oh, oh)
(Oh, oh-oh, oh-oh, oh-oh)

(Snoop seems to be growing more and more irritated by Katy Perry rebelling against his control.)

Toned, tanned
Fit and ready
Turn it up ’cause it’s gettin’ heavy
Wild, wild Westcoast
These are the girls I love the most
I mean the ones
I mean like she’s the one
Kiss her
Touch her
Squeeze her buns

The girl’s a freak
She drives a Jeep
and lives on the beach
I’m okay
I won’t play
I love the Bay
Just like I love L.A.
Venice Beach
And Palm Springs
Summertime is everything

Homeboys
Hangin’ out
All that ass
Hangin’ out
Bikinis, tankinis, martinis
No weenies
Just a king
And a queen-ie
Katy my lady
(Yeah)
You’re lookin’here baby
(Uh huh)
I’m all up on you
‘Cause you representin’ California
(Ohhh yeahh)

(Snoop seems to be smitten by Katy Perry and California Girls in general.  His rap breakdown is just describing what he likes about the place and the women.  All that ass hangin’ out for example.  At the end of the rap he shrinks himself in order to get on Katy Perry’s level. )

[Katy Perry]
California gurls, we’re unforgettable
Daisy dukes, bikinis on top
Sun-kissed skin, so hot, will melt your popsicle
(Oh-oh, oh-oh, oh)
(Oh, oh-oh, oh-oh, oh-oh)
California gurls, we’re undeniable
Fine, fresh, fierce, we got it on lock
West Coast represent, now put your hands up
(Oh-oh, oh-oh, oh)
(Oh, oh-oh, oh-oh, oh-oh)

(Sooooo, in this part we have the final showdown between Snoop, who is the symbol of power and male dominance, and Katy Perry.  Katy Perry places a couple of whipped cream cans on her breasts and uses them as weapons to kill all of the Gummi bears.  After this, Snoop surrenders to her.  Clearly, this is an illustration of how Katy Perry is using her sexuality to dominate men and gain power.  No?  Do you disagree?  How many times throughout the song has she used sex to gain power over male figures?   The question we are then left with is, is Katy Perry criticizing Hollywood for using female sexuality as a marketing tool?  Is she drawing our attention to the weakness of men and the need for decency and modesty in the name of preserving the integrity of a masses so easily overtaken by temptation?  No, I don’t think so.  She’s trying to sell herself and her music.  In short, Katy Perry is a prostitute, the media is her pimp, and we are the customer.)

What Ke$ha is Truly Saying


I had much fun analyzing Lady Gaga’s lyrics last week, so I figured I’d try it again with another favorite among young people, Kesha (also spelled Ke$ha). Is it possible that she too is artistically addressing humanity’s deepest conflicts?!? Or, is she just a no talent floozy?

Watch the video. Note the 80’s theme throughout with the clothing, hair, and large stereo. Also note that she begins and ends in a bathtub, and it is likely that neither are located in her own home.
http://www.youtube.com/v/QD1uon92nMc?fs=1&hl=en_US

Tik Tok
(This is the sound a clock makes. This song will deal with the passage of time. “Tik” is slang for Crystal Meth. When I looked for a meaning for Tok, I found Theory of Knowledge, which is basically the study of how we know things. I’m not going to give Ke$ha that much credit. Let’s stick with the drugs. Meth makes you feel energetic and alert. It can also increase libido and induce euphoria, which is a sense of well-being. It’s also extremely addictive, but I won’t get into the evils of drugs right now. Crystal Meth seems like a good choice for someone like Ke$ha who lives and dies by the club scene. So I suppose the title is sort of clever. Sort of.)

Ke$ha
(Her full name is Kesha Rose Sebert and she is twenty-three. Now, the dollar sign. It could have to do with her name sounding like the word “cash”. Actually, it probably has a lot to do with that. Beyond that, perhaps she is knowingly, or unknowingly, addressing the fact that she has become a hot commodity. She is a money making object.)

Wake up in the morning feeling like P Diddy (Hey, what up girl?) Grab my glasses, I’m out the door, I’m gonna hit this city (Lets go) Before I leave, brush my teeth with a bottle of Jack ‘Cause when I leave for the night, I ain’t coming back

(She wakes up feeling like someone else. P Diddy is a popular artist, and someone she would have heard in the club the night before. I wouldn’t be surprised if this is just an excuse to have P Diddy say a few lines at the beginning of the song. What the hell does P Diddy feel like? Is this common knowledge? Does P Diddy feel like a trashed woman waking up in a strange bath tub?
Anyway, I think it’s odd that she says she’s “out the door” and then two lines later says “before I leave”. Maybe “out the door” is more about her intention to leave. Either way, it’s confusing. Then she brushes her teeth with Jack Daniels, which means she takes a swig. She does this because she isn’t coming back to the house she woke up in. This could either mean that she woke up in a strange house after sleeping with a strange man, or it could mean that she doesn’t intend to return to her home. Whatever the case, she takes a drink to drown her negative feelings.)

I’m talking pedicure on our toes, toes Trying on all our clothes, clothes Boys blowing up our phones, phones Drop-topping, playing our favorite CDs Pulling up to the parties Trying to get a little bit tipsy

(This is all about appearances. She is trying to look good for the boys because it feels good for boys to want her. Drop topping is about blasting music in a convertible. She’s all about herself and people paying attention to her. Then she says, “trying to get a little bit tipsy”. Is this a buzz designed to loosen her up? Probably.)

Don’t stop, make it pop DJ, blow my speakers up Tonight, I’mma fight ‘Til we see the sunlight Tick tock on the clock But the party don’t stop, no Don’t stop, make it pop DJ, blow my speakers up Tonight, I’mma fight ‘Til we see the sunlight Tick tock, on the clock But the party don’t stop, no

(The refrain is repeated. “Don’t stop” refers to the partying. Since the music video has her waking up in a tub, preparing for the club, going to the club, and waking up in a tub all over again, we can assume that she is in a never ending cycle of partying. The party don’t stop. Just as the hands of a clock go around and around and around, she keeps doing the same cycle. I’m not sure about her fighting until she sees the sunlight. What is she fighting? I think she just needed to rhyme a few words.)

Ain’t got a care in world, but got plenty of beer Ain’t got no money in my pocket, but I’m already here And now, the dudes are lining up cause they hear we got swagger But we kick em to the curb unless they look like Mick Jagger

(This part upsets me. She doesn’t have any cares, but she has plenty of beer. I suppose she’s contrasting quantities. No Cares/ Yes Beer. What’s the connection? The next line is even worse. No money, but she’s already here. Where is she? Is she in a state of intoxication already so she doesn’t need to buy any more booze or drugs? Then we have the last line about dudes looking like Mick Jagger. Mick Jagger is an ugly dude. He’s popular despite his appearance. His physical appearance is not an asset in his portfolio. Is Ke$ha showing us how messed up she is by making such a poor choice of judgment?)

I’m talking about everybody getting crunk, crunk Boys tryin’ to touch my junk, junk Gonna smack him if he getting too drunk, drunk

(Holy smokes! Lady Gaga is looking like Leonardo Da Vinci in comparison to this garbage. Everyone is getting drunk and guys are feeling her up. Don’t worry though, cause she is going to smack them if they get out of hand. Nice. )

Now, now, we go until they kick us out, out Or the police shut us down, down Police shut us down, down Po-po shut us

(Fight the power! Not for any just cause, but for purely selfish and destructive reasons. )

Don’t stop, make it pop DJ, blow my speakers up Tonight, I’mma fight ‘Til we see the sunlight Tick tock on the clock But the party don’t stop, no Don’t stop, make it pop DJ, blow my speakers up Tonight, I’mma fight ‘Til we see the sunlight Tick tock on the clock But the party don’t stop, no

(Make it pop. Do I need to elaborate? And throw in a few more meaningless rhymes while you’re at it.)

DJ, you build me up You break me down My heart, it pounds Yeah, you got me With my hands up You got me now You got that sound Yeah, you got me DJ, you build me up You break me down My heart, it pounds Yeah, you got me With my hands up Put your hands up Put your hands up

(Very good Ke$ha! You used that image of getting arrested with your hands up to show a different kind of surrender. A willing surrender to the power of the music. Did you do this all by yourself?)

Now, the party don’t start ’til I walk in

(If a tree falls, and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound? If a party starts, and Ke$ha isn’t around to party, does it really start?)

Don’t stop, make it pop DJ, blow my speakers up Tonight, I’mma fight ‘Til we see the sunlight Tick tock on the clock But the party don’t stop, no Don’t stop, make it pop DJ, blow my speakers up Tonight, I’mma fight ‘Til we see the sunlight Tick tock on the clock But the party don’t stop, no

Ke$ha is a moron. This song has no benefit for our culture. Catchy beat though.

What Lady Gaga is Truly Saying

I’m going to analyze this to death. Everything between (parentheses) refers to the text directly above it.

Watch the video. Note how she covers her face with her hands.

http://www.youtube.com/v/4lHnhV9NfL8&hl=en_US&fs=1


Just Dance

(The title, like Lady Gaga and this song, is riddled with ambivalence. Just often precedes a command. “Just do it” for example. It is meant to strip away any inhibitions that might be preventing an action. Just is also an adjective meaning lawful, moral, and righteous. So you have at once a push to dance without thought of consequence and the inescapable presence of justice, or consequence for immoral action.)

Lady Gaga
(Lady is a term used to identify a woman who is refined and proper. Gaga is a sound babies make and often associated with the sexually charged response that a man has toward an attractive woman. He went “gaga” for her. So in the name you have Lady, which brings to mind class, order, propriety, and Gaga, which brings to mind the carnal, and improper.)

I’ve had a little bit too much
All of the people star to rush (start to rush by)
A dizzy twister dance
Can’t find my drink or man
Where are my keys?
I lost my phone

What’s goin’ on, on the floor?
I love this record baby but I can’t see straight anymore keep it cool
What’s the name of this club?
I can’t remember but it’s alright, a-alright

(The singer begins in a state of confusion. Where is my phone? Where is my drink? Where is the gentleman that I came in here with? She is experiencing the consequences of her revelry. Then she says, “It’s alright”. But of course it isn’t alright. She went to great lengths to show us that nothing is alright. She is drunk, confused, and alone. She simply tells herself that it’s alright in order to continue “the dance”. Otherwise, she would be forced to accept the fact that she is lost and alone.)

Chorus:
JUST DANCE!
Gonna be ok
Da da doo doot-n
JUST DANCE!
Spin that record babe
Da da doo doot-n
JUST DANCE!
Gonna be ok
D-d-d dance, dance, dance, just
J-J-JUST DANCE!

(She repeats the command four times. JUST DANCE! And she reassures herself that it is going to be ok. Also, look at the “Da da doo doot” gibberish. Doesn’t this look like more baby talk? Da da. Ga ga. That’s because this is the fleshy, impulse driven, carnal side of her nature. It makes it easier to forget that things are not alright.)

Wish I could shut my playboy mouth
How’d I turn my shirt inside out (inside out right)
Control your poison babe
Roses have thorns they say
And we’re all gettin’ hosed tonight!

What’s goin’ on, on the floor?
I love this record baby but I can’t see straight anymore keep it cool
What’s the name of this club?
I can’t remember but it’s alright, a-alright

(Here we have more of the same. There is a strong sense that she is aware of her sad condition. She even wishes she could shut her playboy mouth and control her poison. She knows that her recklessness has consequences. Her words and actions are harming herself and others. Nevertheless, she tells herself that things are alright)

Chorus:
JUST DANCE!
Gonna be ok
Da da doo doot-n
JUST DANCE!
Spin that record babe
Da da doo doot-n
JUST DANCE!
Gonna be ok
D-d-d dance, dance, dance, just
J-J-JUST DANCE!

(More false affirmation)

When I come through on the dance floor checkin’ out that catalogue
Can’t believe my eyes so many women without a flaw
And I ain’t gonna give it up, steady trying to pick it up like a call
I’m a hit it up beat it up latch on to it until tomorrow yeah

(This is coming from a man. First, notice that he refers to the women as catalogues. They are attractive like models one would find in a catalogue, and since Lady Gaga included the word playboy earlier in the song it’s not a far reach to make that connection. He continues to describe the women as flawless. Once again, like models. In the next two lines he reveals his tremendous lack of respect for their humanity. He threatens to “hit” “beat up” and “latch on” to one until tomorrow. He is a wolf and the confused lost woman is a sheep.)

Shorty I can see that you got so much energy\\
The way you twirlin’ up them hips round and round
And there is no reason at all why you can’t leave here with me
In the meantime stay let me watch you break it down and

( To him, she has so much energy, or life. But really, it is fake. She is not full of life. The attraction is superficial. And if you look at the third line he makes it clear that he will have his way. “There is no reason at all why you can’t leave here with me.” Of course, she can’t reason anyway since she is so disoriented. There will be consequences for her actions.)

Chorus:
DANCE!
Gonna be ok
Dad a doo doot-n
JUST DANCE!
Spin that record babe
Dad a doo doot-n
JUST DANCE!
Gonna be ok
D-d-d dance, dance, dance, just
J-J-JUST DANCE!

Half psychotic sick hypnotic got my blueprint it’s symphonic
Half psychotic sick hypnotic got my blueprint electronic
Half psychotic sick hypnotic got my blueprint it’s symphonic
Half psychotic sick hypnotic got my blueprint electronic

(Notice how she covers her face throughout the song. Usually, she only covers about half of her face. That’s because part of her realizes that she is sick and psychotic and the other half chooses to ignore it. The part that realizes her true state of being is ashamed and so covers it up. The electronic symphony coming from the music allows her to dance. The electronic symphony gives her a purpose and a structure. Like a blueprint for a building)

Go use your muscle car-ve it out work it, hustle! (I got it just stay close enough to go it on)
Don’t slow! Drive it, clean it Lysol, bleed it
Spend the last dough (I’ve got it) in your pocko (I’ve got it)

(I think this is about all of the things people do to get through life. They spend money on things. Then they tell themselves “I’ve got it”, but that is as much a lie as “It’s alright” within the song.)
Chorus:
JUST DANCE!
Gonna be ok
Da da doo doot-n
JUST DANCE!
Spin that record babe
Da da doo doot-n
JUST DANCE!
Gonna be ok
D-d-d dance, dance, dance, just
J-J-JUST DANCE!

(Just Dance is a song about the ways that people cover up the truth. The truth is that they are not alright. Lady Gaga is a genius.)