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A Closer Look at Country Pop Music

March 17, 2014

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Country pop is a subgenre of country music. Its influence comes from soft rock and country songs. This brand of music flourished in the 70’s. However, in the 1950’s, the merging of country and pop took place when Chet Atkins and Owen Bradley conceptualized a genre that will suit the young adult crowd. It is deemed as a way to make country more appealing to the younger audience as rock songs have won them over. Among the first artists to have dwelled on this genre are Jim reeves, Patsy Cline and Eddy Arnold. It is also believed that this innovation in music started in Nashville, Tennessee.

The Popularity of Country Pop

It was in 2000’s when this brand of music started to become more popular. Some artists, who succeeded in making this brand known, include Dixie Chicks and Lee Ann Womack. The presence of country singers in American Idol also paved the way for this genre to be even more popular. Carrie Underwood is the most notable of them all. Her hit single “Before He Cheats” is one of the most popular country pop hits in recent years. In the late 2000’s, these singers were joined by Taylor Swift and Rascal Flatts who have also made the genre more appealing to a wider group of audience.

The success of country pop artists was reflected in terms of their album sales and even recognition from award-giving bodies. For instance, Lady Antebellum and Taylor Swift both have been nominated and won various Grammy Awards. 2 of Swift’s albums topped various music charts including the Billboard 200 and Top Country Albums. Her Red album also sold 1 million copies just a week after it debuted. Some of her popular songs include “We are Never Getting Back Together” and “I Knew You Were Trouble.”

Another country pop duo called Florida Georgia Line has also gone popular these days. The partnership of Tyler Hubbard and Brian Kelley that started in 2011 has become appealing to many people. In fact, they are going on tour this year. If you wish to buy a ticket, you can check out http://www.floridageorgialinezone.com/.

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Kelly Clarkson: The Original Idol

March 17, 2014

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kcAfter her success as the first ever American Idol, Kelly Clarkson went on to become one of the biggest artists of today. Her final song during the competition, “A Moment Like This” topped the US Billboard Hot 100 instantly. From there, she has released more albums that raked millions of dollars in total sales. In fact, the Idols following her have not really made a mark in the music industry except for a few of them. Claiming to be the original American Idol, Kelly has definitely made her mark in the music industry.

Biggest Hits

Among her most popular singles are “Breakaway,” “Since U Been Gone,” “Never Again,” and “My Life Would Suck Without You.” These songs along with many others have made it through various hit charts and have even become anthems. Most of her songs talk about love, independence, heartbreak and moving on. Due to the message of her songs along with its rhythm, Kelly was able to sell millions of albums worldwide. She has in fact solidified her status as one of the artists with the most number of albums sold. She has been certified with platinum records many times. Other than her success as a recording artist, her super skills were also acknowledged by various award-giving bodies including Grammy, MTV, Billboard and many others.

Life Before and After Idol    

Kelly never had a formal vocal training prior to American Idol. She knew it would be a tough call to battle it out in the nationwide search for the next singing superstar considering how talented her opponents were. However, week after week, she has proven that she can really rise above the others. In fact, after her victory as American Idol, she has also gone to become the runner up in the World Idol. Despite all her achievements as a singer, she has also become very passionate in helping others. She has partnered with Save the Music Foundation, Save the Children Foundation, UNICEF and many others.

If you wish to watch her live, you better follow her concert schedule. For now, you can also watch Daniel Tosh’s shows by booking tickets at http://www.danieltoshzone.com/. 

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Troubled Pop Singers and Their Influence to Teens and Tweens!

March 2, 2014

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1380065995_miley-cyrus-justin-bieber-zoomThe problem in social media is that it has a tendency to embellish the odd. Controversial issues are viral. Serial killers become famous. Rape victims become instant movie icons. The actress with the drug problem is more talked about than the actress who has her head on straight. The social badass kid gets more attention than the kid who is an achiever. There are always exceptions to this tendency though, but most of the time the person who stands out more than others, are the ones who manufacture drama. Sad truth is, if a certain star does something good, it takes a troop of PR professionals to put it into the mainstream media. But if that star gets into trouble, or if something tragic happens, it would be all over the celebrity gossip sites in a matter of minutes (or seconds, thanks to Twitter and Instagram.) More advertisement means more people buying it. The more it’s being talked about the more it becomes famous. And famous is what’s “in” and our young ones think it’s all acceptable. It’s because they are remarkably different, and so as our beloved pop stars.

Almost every young pop singers or bands nowadays are famous for dressing provocatively and singing lyrics that convey adult subjects like love, sex and violence. It’s somehow a big issue for an adult to behave in this manner, but is it okay for teens and tweens? Interview any teen pop singer and they will claim they are empowering young people by setting an example to them that they can be anything and do anything. There is completely nothing wrong about encouraging the youth about loving and being themselves. Pop artists have all the means to influence their followers. But, are they really helping them?

Let’s take Miley Cyrus as an example, real name Destiny Hope Cyrus. She is known as the lead role in the famous Disney Channel TV series Hannah Montana. She started as a sweet, wholesome young actress and was idolized by many young kids like her. She maintained a decent career all throughout her teenage years. Until recently, when she turned 21, not much of a rebellious age, she generated controversy in a sexually explicit public image while promoting her fourth album Bangerz (2013). In the album there’s “We Can’t Stop”, where she dressed herself as a flirty teddy bear as if to show her transition from wholesome to sensual. Also there’s “Wrecking Ball” where she rides a wrecking ball naked like a carousel. Her music videos became instantly viral because it’s sexually provocative, totally different from the Miley Cyrus they used to know. Is it because of her breakup with Liam Hemsworth that she decided to let loose? However, most of her fans still follow her absurd ways.

Then here comes Justin Bieber who recently had been in a double legal trouble. Last January 23 early this year, he was arrested for drag racing with R&B singer Khalil Sharieff, after police spotted them racing two luxury cars on a residential street at 4.09 AM local time, with two other vehicles who are seems to be used to hunk off the area. He was then charged by Miami Beach police for driving under the influence, resisting arrest without violence and driving with an expired Georgia driver’s license. He once again spiced things up a bit by smiling on his first ever mug shot in Miami-Dade County jail. After being released he was then faced with an assault charge in his hometown, Canada. He admits that he has been smoking a ton of pot constantly and taking prescription drugs. He ignores his mother’s plea to go to rehab, says he doesn’t need it.

Sadly, but these pop singers are handing over a negative idea that the young should embrace misery as a way to be different. They are showing examples of how young women should exploit their sexuality even if it results in being a pedophile’s wet dream or a victim of rape. They demonstrate to young men that it’s okay to get intoxicated by alcohol, and drugs. Swearing and assaulting people is just a norm. Most of their songs broadcast too much kissing, nudity and lust that make the listeners to think that sex is like a candy freely given to every fling. Hence, children sing along as 50 Cent sings “Candy Shop”. A song that is so innocent looking and is catchy to the kids they will think the song is just all about that. (It talks about sex by the way.)  Many other songs like Justin Timberlake’s “Strawberry Bubblegum, John Mayer’s “Your Body is a Wonderland” and more other singers use candy words and children’s story-related lyrics to attract those innocent young viewers/ listeners.

They are passing on a large influence to everyone, especially to the young. Did you know? Study shows that kids as young as 5 years old are mimicking the provocative behavior of inadequately dressed pop stars? They learn to pout and thrust by watching music videos. At school prom, there were junior primary school students who were also dancing “exotically” in an attempt to copy their music idols – including Beyonce, Lady Gaga, and Kylie Minogue. They commit into relationship flings because Taylor Swift does very good in making love songs about her past relationships. For the innocent viewers, it’s acceptable and cool to stick out your tongue to everything because Miley Cyrus does it and she’s famous. For the guys, they think its okay to wave a middle finger to everyone who pisses them off because that’s how Justin Bieber does to his annoying paparazzi.

These pop stars may be setting a bad influence more than they are empowering the youth. Thinking of it in a different perspective though, as wise citizens and mentors of the future generation, we should look at these young troubled pop stars as a big screen picture of how the youth will be if they continue making wrong decisions. Let them realize the right and the wrong. Let them know that some people walk down the paths forged by others, just to try them on for size, and some discard them for a trail they blaze on their own. Encourage them to be remarkably different, in a good manner.

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