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All The YouTube People (Put a Camera On It)
November 20, 2008 9:03 AM   Subscribe

The latest dance craze to inspire YouTube dance fiends is Beyonce's "Single Ladies (Put a Ring On It)". There's a Big Girl Remix, a Single Man version (the original became so popular that the Single Man did a version with a more modest outfit at the request of BET), and lots of other individual interpretations. Beyonce has said her video was inspired by another YouTube video - a mashup of a Fosse dance routine performed by Gwen Verdon and the hip-hop song "Walk It Out" (the original Fosse routine with the original music). Videos might be NSFW.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero (69 comments total) 18 users marked this as a favorite

 
I definitely wanted to include the SNL parody with Beyonce and Justin Timberlake, but I couldn't find a legally posted version.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 9:04 AM on November 20, 2008 [1 favorite]


Wow. That Gwen Verdon one was awesome.
posted by acro at 9:11 AM on November 20, 2008


Does she have some kind of product to shift at the moment?
posted by mandal at 9:12 AM on November 20, 2008


Previously
posted by padraigin at 9:12 AM on November 20, 2008


When did Beyonce get a bionic arm? I'm so behind on all this.
posted by dog food sugar at 9:15 AM on November 20, 2008 [3 favorites]


Perhaps Beyonce saw the video right here on Metafilter! Fess up- which one of you is Beyonce?
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 9:17 AM on November 20, 2008 [2 favorites]


This is pretty awesome.
posted by AwkwardPause at 9:18 AM on November 20, 2008


It's somehow very comforting to know that all over this country, at this very moment, pretty black men are cavorting frantically in unfinished basements.

Dude you can dance your ass off, now get some wall to wall in there and finish up the drywall, damn!
posted by Divine_Wino at 9:20 AM on November 20, 2008 [3 favorites]


And for your bean-plating needs: a feminist critique.
posted by piratebowling at 9:23 AM on November 20, 2008 [1 favorite]


I definitely wanted to include the SNL parody with Beyonce and Justin Timberlake, but I couldn't find a legally posted version.

Here she be.
For how long? Who knows. Sorry about the subtitles.
posted by gman at 9:30 AM on November 20, 2008 [2 favorites]


From piratebowling's link:

"These are just a few examples trying to illustrate why Beyonce is one of the biggest, albeit flyest, proponents of a retrograde conservative ideology..."

awesome.
posted by sararah at 9:35 AM on November 20, 2008 [1 favorite]


And for your bean-plating needs: a feminist critique.

Uh, yeah. I think someone doesn't have any idea of what's going on at the ground level.
posted by cimbrog at 9:46 AM on November 20, 2008


And for your bean-plating needs: a feminist critique.

Interesting, thanks for sharing! I don't agree with the article, though- all the examples are lines pulled out of the context of the songs they're representing. She pulls lines out of Single Ladies, misquotes the lyrics and leaves out the most important part:

Don’t treat me to the things of the world
I’m not that kind of girl
Your love is what I prefer
, what I deserve
Here's a man that makes me then takes me
And delivers me to a destiny, to infinity and beyond
Pull me into your arms
Say I’m the one you want
If you don’t, you’ll be alone
And like a ghost I’ll be gone


Trust me, I've been listening to this song nonstop for the past 3 days (because I'm trying to learn that dance), and it's not about rings. It's about love- telling a dude that you won't sit around forever waiting on him. How is that not empowering?
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 9:46 AM on November 20, 2008 [5 favorites]


That article was okay and all, but if you like it you probably should put a ring on it.
posted by sondrialiac at 9:51 AM on November 20, 2008 [2 favorites]


Eh, I honestly don't know where I stand on the whole issue with the message of the song. A lot of it just really depends on what one's views of marriage are (it's a contract of partnership vs. a contract of ownership). Does the girl want the marriage because she wants a relationship of mutual dedication, or does she want to be the envy of every other woman in society?

I just wanted to throw that link in the mix because that article was actually my introduction to the video. Ultimately, it's a dance song, and a damn catchy one at that, so excuse me while I go shake my booty.
posted by piratebowling at 9:57 AM on November 20, 2008


Another feminist critique, from a slightly different perspective. But damn that girl can dance.
posted by macmac at 10:03 AM on November 20, 2008


And delivers me to a destiny, to infinity and beyond
Pull me into your arms


She's marrying Buzz Lightyear?
posted by mandal at 10:03 AM on November 20, 2008 [7 favorites]


Pointless and rather sad. Almost depressing.
posted by Zambrano at 10:09 AM on November 20, 2008


My god, this is great! It's so great that every record store clerk with a college radio show should play this single at the top of every hour before turning to more Deerhoof.
posted by ferdydurke at 10:12 AM on November 20, 2008


I'd hit it approach her in a respectful manner (or preferably seek an introduction through mutual friends), ask her to coffee, follow up with dinner only if we had intellectual chemistry as well as physical, and then pursue a serious, healthy, long-term relationship. A serious, healthy, long-term relationship involving lots and lots of sex.
posted by schroedinger at 10:20 AM on November 20, 2008 [5 favorites]


In response to this

I don't see a man who doesn't want to marry you as a "motherfucker" who is stringing you along for "sadistic pleasure".

A guy refused her proposal, and she ditched him. He didn't or couldn't give her what she wanted, so she got pissed off and left him. Now he is sad, and she is dancing up on other guys.

Saying that she gave him an "ultimatum" is like putting it through an "only boys can propose" filter where any aggressive push for marriage from a female is either shrewish or pathetic.

Also, grouping Alanis Morisette with Avril Lavigne and Katy Perry is bizarre. Unless Katy Perry is Canadian.
posted by sondrialiac at 10:30 AM on November 20, 2008


Twenty-five thousand comments on the original Youtube video!?!? That's kind of insane. That puts some Meta threads here in a whole different light for me.
posted by stinkycheese at 10:33 AM on November 20, 2008


Such a fantastic single and the coolest video in a long time. The Gwen thing is awesome too. If this dance gets half the attention that the Soulja Boy thing did, dance floors will be fun again.
posted by stvspl at 10:33 AM on November 20, 2008


I'd hit it

Damn you, schroedinger!
posted by mai at 10:39 AM on November 20, 2008


If this dance gets half the attention that the Soulja Boy thing did, dance floors will be fun again.

This dance is waaaaaay harder than the Soulja Boy dance. The Soulja Boy dance was made for the dance floor- it's pratically the Electric Slide. This dance was made for a professional dancer. Doesn't meant the rest of us won't try, though!
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 10:46 AM on November 20, 2008 [2 favorites]


I wish Karen Carpenter could have looked and danced like that.
posted by doctorschlock at 10:50 AM on November 20, 2008


Perhaps Beyonce saw the video right here on Metafilter! Fess up- which one of you is Beyonce?

Ok, I'll admit it. It's me.
posted by Dormant Gorilla at 10:56 AM on November 20, 2008


Ok, I'll admit it. It's me.

We are all Beyonce today.
posted by odinsdream at 11:05 AM on November 20, 2008 [1 favorite]


Fess up- which one of you is Beyonce?

Fun fact, Beyoncé Knowles and I were born on the same day. Sep. 4, 1981 was a quality day in history.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 11:07 AM on November 20, 2008


I definitely wanted to include the SNL parody with Beyonce and Justin Timberlake, but I couldn't find a legally posted version.

Here's that version, without subtitles (just for sharing among friends - nothin illegal 'bout that...). The login, if it asks you for one, is ringonit
posted by progosk at 11:10 AM on November 20, 2008


I was about to say it's good to hear some catchy, positive lyrics, and use Rihanna's Lemme Get That as a counterpoint for everything wrong with female vocals written by men. But then I went and looked at who had writing credit for the songs: both have Terius "The-Dream" Nash involved. Maybe the other guys were more of the lyrics behind the songs, maybe not.

Damn you, catchy production with crappy lyrics! And damn my knowledge of the English language! If I didn't understand the words, I could appreciate so much more pop music.
posted by filthy light thief at 11:21 AM on November 20, 2008


Also: more anatomy of the choreography.
posted by progosk at 11:24 AM on November 20, 2008 [1 favorite]


Holy cats, it's like she's shrieking at someone down the block.
posted by uncleozzy at 11:25 AM on November 20, 2008


No one writes a "dude your ass is lame I'm off to find someone better" song than Beyonce. I'm not sure where the hate is coming from.

Also, Meow.
posted by chunking express at 11:25 AM on November 20, 2008 [1 favorite]


That dance is a Gwen Verdon/Bob Fosse number, just sped up a very little bit.

Nice to see that work still resonates with the people.
posted by winna at 11:26 AM on November 20, 2008


I guess I should have read the whole post before replying! Ack!
posted by winna at 11:26 AM on November 20, 2008


WHEN THE FUCK IS BEYONCE GOING TO UPGRADE ME ALREADY, MAN? I WAIT AND WAIT!
posted by Skot at 11:32 AM on November 20, 2008 [2 favorites]


For a more serious analysis, those who get upset about the marriage message should consider the context. A lot of hip-hop, rap, and R&B music these days is focused on the promotion of single, purely sexual relationships. A number of leaders in urban communities have problems with this as they feel it's glamorizing what they see is a crisis of the African-American family: A tendency away from two-parent families and fatherly involvement, and towards encouraging guys to ditch their baby-mommas and baby mommas to go at it alone.

So this song is remarkable not only that it brings up marriage at all, but rather than advocating quick hook-ups or casual relationships it demands a guy with an interest in a woman promise real, long-term, binding commitment.
posted by schroedinger at 11:34 AM on November 20, 2008 [8 favorites]


I just want to go on record that both the song and the dance is awesome, awesome.
posted by ruelle at 11:39 AM on November 20, 2008


why does she appear to have a robot hand? is that what she means by putting a ring on 'it'?

goes with the mario power-up sound in the track.
posted by geos at 12:31 PM on November 20, 2008


also, as counterpoint...
posted by geos at 12:34 PM on November 20, 2008


also, as counterpoint...

Man, Geos, you had the music dork in me expecting counterpoint.

Oh well.
posted by Hachijuhachi at 12:40 PM on November 20, 2008


Wow. To Single Man: congrats on your teeny yet very taut butt. However, the over the shoulder banana hammock thingy with the shrug doesn't work. Full drag would've been better, IMHO, but you could've also done hot pants and pasties, I suppose.

Hooray for Bob Fosse haunting mainstream pop videos. I'm always fond of well-executed "isolation" moves (i.e., fast hip isolations, moving your shoulders on a different line from the rest of your torso, etc).

Also: Justin Timberlake in a leotard. I just discovered that I've waited all my life to type that sentence.
posted by LMGM at 1:11 PM on November 20, 2008


However, the over the shoulder banana hammock thingy with the shrug doesn't work.

Speak for yourself! I love it. If I looked like that, I'd wear that outfit all damn day long. Although he looks a lot less skinny in real clothes, which is a plus- another pound or two might not hurt.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 1:34 PM on November 20, 2008 [3 favorites]


I spent a lot of time yesterday on another blog (one that is often the target of derision on the blue) discussing the relative merits of old hardcore bands and their suitability for guitar hero/rock band.

Now I can't stop listening to the new Beyonce single. That is a heck of a hook.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 1:39 PM on November 20, 2008


Pink: I'm going to try and learn this dance too. We need one more person then we can perform this at karaoke. We'll do this and the Wondergirls song, and it'll be awesome. Like some kind of a cover band, but for pop dance routines.
posted by kkokkodalk at 1:52 PM on November 20, 2008


I'll learn it too tps! It's harder than soulja boy because your knees are bent the entire time - all your weight is on your thighs. Beyonce can bear it because she has The Best Thighs Evar (comes with awesome booty - I bet the Williams sisters would find it a doddle). She has songwriting credit (along with others) - I wonder if she chose the song in response to her own marriage after years of public (and probably personal) speculation? Anyway, she looks great.

I love the 'Walk It Out' clip with Gwen Verdon. It's one of my favourite mashups ever!
posted by goo at 4:22 PM on November 20, 2008


That original Beyoncé video is incredible. What *amazing* dancing! Such beautiful bodies.

Just yesterday I wandered over to hear this 16 year old northern British girl, whose singing I like, (especially her No One) Chantelle Readman, to see what new vid she had done. Her dad filmed her a couple of years ago and rocketed his daughter into YT celebrity. Her latest is Beyoncé's If I Were A Boy, then checked out the original Beyoncé's excellent If I Were A Boy.

A question. Where did the bottom smacking gesture in that dance originally come from? It's been around a while. Anybody have any idea?
posted by nickyskye at 5:09 PM on November 20, 2008


The corpus from which Beyonce borrows could have been far, far greater, were it not for the poor sportsmanship of one Peter Edward Rose, Sr..
posted by Kwantsar at 6:29 PM on November 20, 2008


I can't be the only one who finds Beyonce's "dancing" to resemble something like contemptuous aggression. Totally disheartening to see humans using their joints and muscles in that manner.
posted by Burhanistan at 6:39 PM on November 20, 2008


I've been learning the dance too. It actually is easier in high heels, you can rock back and lean on the heels for the thigh-centric moves. I also found it easier to mute the music while I run through the steps the first couple of times.
posted by Maisie Jay at 6:52 PM on November 20, 2008


I put a ring on it!

BY IT I MEAN YOU SHEEPLE YOU ARE AN IT TO ME

pwnt

posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 12:22 AM on November 21, 2008 [1 favorite]


I need to go to work but I keep watching this video. It's hard to practice my newly-learned moves in my cubicle.
posted by mdonley at 3:17 AM on November 21, 2008


Nobody's mentioned the possible drag queen dancer in the video? I need MeFi's analysis of this! The dancer I'm refering to is the one they never do a close up. The one with black hair.
posted by spec80 at 10:05 AM on November 21, 2008


Beyonce said they're both women.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 11:03 AM on November 21, 2008 [1 favorite]


The Single Ladies Man on the Bonnie Hunt Show!
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 11:53 AM on November 21, 2008 [1 favorite]


Meantime, Beyonce's husband is getting more tail than Sinatra.
posted by Zambrano at 2:24 PM on November 21, 2008


Well, I finally got around to watching some of these. Jesus that song is shit, or am I unable to hear all the good frequencies?
posted by odinsdream at 7:47 PM on November 21, 2008


The former. I liked the Fosse videos though.
posted by exogenous at 8:35 PM on November 21, 2008


pffft, I'll respect Shane Mercado when he can do that dance in 5" heels.
posted by desjardins at 10:08 PM on November 21, 2008


Also,

WORST.
EARWORM.
EVER.
posted by desjardins at 10:15 PM on November 21, 2008


Round man does the dance.
posted by nickyskye at 3:37 PM on November 22, 2008


Single Man, bubeleh, PUT YOUR HEELS ON, poser.
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 5:29 PM on November 22, 2008


NYC METAFILTER DANCE SQUAD.
posted by unknowncommand at 8:57 AM on November 23, 2008


Which is to say, do I live anywhere near TPS and kkokkodalk, because I too am learning this dance.
posted by unknowncommand at 9:05 AM on November 23, 2008


WOO HOO NYC DANCE TEAM
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 8:04 PM on November 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


Shame, all the tribute videos are no longer available.

Still, the Beyonce one, and the Fosse routine that inspired it are both bloody spectacular.
posted by jack_mo at 3:28 PM on November 24, 2008


Single ladies put a ring on it...

and deal with divorce court expenses.

Seems staying single would be cheaper.
posted by dasheekeejones at 10:53 AM on November 25, 2008


Beyonce meets the Single Man dancer!
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 8:22 PM on December 3, 2008 [1 favorite]


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