Tuesday, January 4, 2011

2010 in recap - The Worst Song of the Year

Theres a lot of terrible music around at the moment, so lots of contenders for this dubious honour. But the winner has to be the Black Eyed Peas for their excerable single The Time (Dirty Bit).

While I'm not sure that this song was actually the worst this year, I can't say that there was any other song that made me want to punch anyone in the face more this year than this did. The face in question would be Will.I.Am, the producer/singer/rapper who is primarily responsible for the BEP.

I would say that this song sucks balls; but on reflection, sucking balls is not such a bad thing. I don't begrudge any guy or gal who chooses to suck balls. So saying "this sucks balls" is actually doing a disservice to ball-sucking.

I have no problem with sampling, or covering another song, per se. But I do object to taking something that is already pretty good, and then just pissing all over it. The original (I've Had) the Time of My Life, by Bill Medley and Jennifer Warnes, is well-known from the Dirty Dancing soundtrack. It's a nice song, with Medley's gruff white-soul vocal a highlight. BEP replace that with Will.I.Am's vocodered annoyingness, add some electronic stuff that doesn't really fit, and rake in millions of bucks for it. I ask you, is that justice?

This is all the more sad because BEP were once, a long time ago, a half-decent band. They were never overloaded with street cred, and were never good rappers, but they could make some pretty good hip-hop tracks (Joints & Jam from their first album in 1998 is one of my favourite songs to get down to). Will.I.Am is actually a talented producer and songwriter - he co-wrote John Legend's beautiful piano ballad Ordinary People, for instance. Some artists are just talentless hacks who make crap because that's all they know. But Will.I.Am gets an extra thumbs down because he is capable of so much better, but instead chooses to deliver unto the world this year's pinnacle of stupid music for stupid people.

1 comment:

  1. I think BEP are intelligent to understand that catchy = money and that `daps from the underground' don't necessarily pay no bills.

    In that sense I have respect for them though I too (as you know) dissed the peas in the presence of one of their mates Mr Jo Koy who told me to `stop it'.

    This song sucks compared to the original but it's not necessarily unenjoyable, you just have to free your mind somewhat to do it mang.

    Elements of the the video are crazy nice but then again I love my 8 bit pixel art so am biased on that front.

    As a further point, that nobody should really care about, I think the Asian dudes, Far East Movement (FEM) seem to have stumbled onto the BEP formula from what I recall were quite Hip Hop roots as well.

    I dunno. More power to them I suppose. Knowing how to get paid is not necessarily a crime. Certainly i'd make a catchy track for some stacks if i had the know how and know who.