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America Responds to Kanye West
September 15, 2009 2:21 AM   Subscribe

Kanye West's VMA outburst: The A.V. Club finds people who think it's due to the devil, an NBC marketing ploy, and a metaphor for racism.

Don't care about Kanye? Even so, I think you'll at least appreciate that the video he embarrassed himself for, Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It), is pretty fantastic. (previously)

BWE has the video of the incident.

This is not the first time Mr. West has had bad behavior at the VMAs. This outburst is just the most recent in the long line of public embarrassments for Kanye, which include the great gay fish South Park episode. That incident ended up super sparkly and ruined fish sticks for him forever.

And, of course, there was the original inappropriate moment: George Bush doesn't care about black people.

There was also that embarrassing incident with Obama. (no really, Obama mentioned him)

You could say this is an emerging meme.

For more horrible pop culture news read The A.V. Club's Daily Buzzkills.
posted by The Devil Tesla (252 comments total) 8 users marked this as a favorite

 
In 1988 I won a "Participant" pendandt for engaging in some kind of swimming carnival at school. The funny thing is, this pendant is more valuable than an MTV music award.
posted by turgid dahlia at 2:27 AM on September 15, 2009 [7 favorites]


"Pendant", of course...could mods rectify? I'll dance at your wedding if you do.
posted by turgid dahlia at 2:28 AM on September 15, 2009


Is that all he said? Given the number of headlines about his outburst I was expecting something more. Basically we have "musician interupts other musician to briefly mention third musician". It's not really what I'd call a stage invasion.
posted by memebake at 2:33 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


Don't care about Kanye? Even so, I think you'll at least appreciate that the video he embarrassed himself for, Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It) , is pretty fantastic.

No, it's awful and its banality to public acclaim ratio makes it one of the worst things ever.
posted by bunnytricks at 2:38 AM on September 15, 2009 [24 favorites]


Yes. Another chance to let you all know Single Ladies is in fact an awesome video.
posted by chunking express at 2:44 AM on September 15, 2009 [2 favorites]


Completely staged. It's only a coincidental convenience that they had a camera arranged to be right next to Beyonce at ground level showing her shocked shocked.
posted by amuseDetachment at 2:46 AM on September 15, 2009 [2 favorites]


It's only a coincidental convenience that they had a camera arranged to be right next to Beyonce at ground level showing her shocked shocked.

She was sitting in the front row and up for multiple awards. It's only logical there would be a camera down there. Too cynical.
posted by cmgonzalez at 2:57 AM on September 15, 2009 [4 favorites]


I really don't get what's supposed to be so super amazing about the video.
posted by Elmore at 3:01 AM on September 15, 2009 [5 favorites]


Also, Beyonce is freaky hot. Why would you not have a camera on her at all times.

For serious.
posted by chunking express at 3:01 AM on September 15, 2009 [2 favorites]


Yes, had to be staged. (See also, Bruno/Eminem.) Coincidentally convenient that he was scheduled to be on Leno's first show last night.

That said, Katy Perry's tweet ("F*ck you Kanye. It's like you stepped on a kitten") made me actually like her for a second.
posted by Sweetie Darling at 3:01 AM on September 15, 2009 [4 favorites]


His "George Bush" remarks were pretty ballsy.
posted by PenDevil at 3:03 AM on September 15, 2009


This whole thing makes me think of Kanye West telling a joke:

Knock, Knock.

Who's there?

Interrupting Cow.

Interrupting Co-- MoOoooo000Oooo*, show-tay

*autotuned
posted by stavrogin at 3:04 AM on September 15, 2009 [44 favorites]


Basically we have "musician interupts other musician to briefly mention third musician". It's not really what I'd call a stage invasion.

We have a drunken (he was seen chugging Hennessey out of a bottle he was carrying around) performer who got up there, took the mic away from a 19-year old (who has sold over 10 million albums worldwide) who was in shock receiving her first award out of a country awards show/category, ruined her moment and embarrassed her with serious disrecpect by basically saying Beyonce should've won.

It was a stage invasion by a man with a history of stage invasions (at least one previously also blamed on alcohol) and of egocentric behavior, rudeness, and overall unpleasantness. He stormed the stage in 2006 at the MTV Europe awards when a duo won over him and he slammed them and claimed his video superior. He went on a tirade after the 2007 show when he failed to score the opening of the show, which infamously went to Britney Spears. He's basically got a long string of this kind of behavior and he's never really taken responsibility for it.

For many, it seems this was a last straw.
posted by cmgonzalez at 3:08 AM on September 15, 2009 [20 favorites]


Colbert's Best Kanye West Moments
posted by netbros at 3:13 AM on September 15, 2009 [2 favorites]


That Beyonce video is no doubt impressive, but crikey does she look uncomfortable. How's she supposed to dance with any fluidity with those ridiculous heels? Also, this song seems too weird for pop music -- I'm surprised how dissonant the music gets and aggressive/technical the beat is.
posted by spiderskull at 3:14 AM on September 15, 2009


I really don't get what's supposed to be so super amazing about the video.

The dance is energetic and fun, while still pulled off with visible skill. The most obvious influence on the video as a whole is Fosse, which is something the world needs more of, but it's not just an imitation. This is especially evident in the minimalist costuming and staging, which is probably a big part of what made Kanye go crazy about it.

In short, there are few music videos around as inspired.
posted by The Devil Tesla at 3:14 AM on September 15, 2009 [2 favorites]


Little-known historical fact: Kanye West interrupted Samuel Taylor Coleridge in mid-composition of Kubla Khan to say that Beyonce had the best video of all time.
posted by taz at 3:15 AM on September 15, 2009 [52 favorites]


I've been thinking about this a lot since it happened, and all of its socio-political ramifications and whatnot, and I've finally come to the conclusion that I don't give two goddamns.
posted by jbickers at 3:17 AM on September 15, 2009 [11 favorites]


Wow, he's, like, the textbook definition of superannuated asshole.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 3:17 AM on September 15, 2009


um the Beyonce video is boring rubbish. I mean come on.. its just another crappy girls in skimpy clothes dancing around video.

I cannot see anything redeeming in the Beyonce video. and the song itself is quite horrible anyway
posted by mary8nne at 3:22 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


I bet Beyonce likes fishdicks....
posted by Pendragon at 3:24 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


I'm so sorry
posted by chillmost at 3:28 AM on September 15, 2009 [26 favorites]


Were there any justice, he'll go to pull a stunt one day and the other person on the stage will kick him in the balls.

Then they'd get a standing ovation.
posted by pinkbuttonanus at 3:30 AM on September 15, 2009


I googled the Beyonce video to see what he was going on about and it showed three women in leotards dancing and slapping their butts. One of them was Beyonce. That is all.

No, that really is all.
posted by unSane at 3:33 AM on September 15, 2009 [14 favorites]


Quick note on the rumor that it was staged: If this whole thing was in order to advertise his Leno visit that would have involved what The A.V. Club calls "the incredibly improbable collusion of West, MTV, and NBC, which is a Wag The Dog-esque scenario even we can’t get behind." If it wasn't for that than what was it for? The incident looks real enough, I say it is.
posted by The Devil Tesla at 3:33 AM on September 15, 2009


I guess it depends pretty heavily on your definition of the word 'good'. And your definition of the words 'vacuous', 'pandering', 'shite'.
posted by unSane at 3:35 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


Anyone who has worked for more than thirty seconds with celebs knows this was planned.
posted by unSane at 3:37 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


Don't care about Kanye?

Sure don't.
posted by Avenger at 3:37 AM on September 15, 2009


The dance is energetic and fun, while still pulled off with visible skill.

Fair enough, but that's the case for a lot of music videos I've seen.

The most obvious influence on the video as a whole is Fosse, which is something the world needs more of, but it's not just an imitation.

I would say it is a pale imitation, especially as there are many takes. That's fine, but I'm still not getting why people are claiming it to be so super double dooper amazing.

This is especially evident in the minimalist costuming and staging, which is probably a big part of what made Kanye go crazy about it.

I don't know much about him to be honest, but it's this video that made him go crazy you say. Interesting.
posted by Elmore at 3:38 AM on September 15, 2009


Considering Kanye went off script during the 9/11 telethon I don't think this was staged.
posted by PenDevil at 3:39 AM on September 15, 2009


Ok, I know this will sound incredibly tinfoil hat (and I'm not actually accusing this, as I don't have any proof), but it's not really that much of a stretch. The Jay Leno show is produced by NBC Universal (Vivendi Universal has a 20% stake, GE gets 80%). Universal Music is the owner of the label for Kanye's latest album. So we're only at two interested parties: Viacom and Vivendi Universal.

Viacom gets free press for MTV and re-runs of South Park's Fishdicks, and Vivendi Universal gets album sales and cementing a new hit on NBC. If this wasn't staged, Kanye West just made a massive gift to two corporations; he's a corporate idiot savant.
posted by amuseDetachment at 3:41 AM on September 15, 2009 [2 favorites]


...what The A.V. Club calls "the incredibly improbable collusion of West, MTV, and NBC...

I'm not sure what is so improbable about such a collusion. It's all about promotion and marketing. West has albums he wants to sell. MTV wants viewers and renewed cred. NBC wants their Leno-in-primetime gamble to be a success. Just because they aren't under the same corporate tent doesn't make such a collusion impossible. Those borders are getting pretty blurry these days. Marketing and promotion seems to pass through the checkpoints fairly fluidly.

Oh...and insert the requisite "What? MTV still does music???" comment here.
posted by Thorzdad at 3:44 AM on September 15, 2009


Kanye West interrupted Samuel Taylor Coleridge in mid-composition of Kubla Khan

I'm very tempted to update this wikipedia entry (hey, Porlock is in the West. Makes perfect sense.)

Kanye's own entry is locked down, though - after someone promptly replaced his portrait with a photo of a big turd, perhaps inspired by this tweet.
posted by effbot at 3:45 AM on September 15, 2009


So the new joke is:
Knock knock.
Who's there?
Interrupting Kanye.
Interrupting Kanye wh-
BEYONCE!
posted by Biblio at 3:46 AM on September 15, 2009 [19 favorites]


(Psst... PenDevil... Katrina telethon... Bush doesn't hate black people enough to want to attack the twin towers.)
posted by spiderskull at 3:47 AM on September 15, 2009


In short, there are few music videos around as inspired.

That's like saying there are few toaster pastries around with the sugary goodness of pop tarts.
posted by fourcheesemac at 3:52 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


And it could have been staged by Kanye alone. He needn't have planned that specific moment, just some boorish interruption.

Anyway, all this crap isn't music.
posted by fourcheesemac at 3:53 AM on September 15, 2009


Miserable piece of shit acts like miserable piece of shit, leaving me shocked -- SHOCKED!!

Been nice had that kid beaten his face in with that trophy, jammed that microphone down his throat; THAT would have been news we could use...
posted by dancestoblue at 3:57 AM on September 15, 2009


I would say it is a pale imitation, especially as there are many takes.

I did notice the cuts, but I wouldn't say that there was an excess of them. I think the way the video is edited is less a way to mask the dancers inadequacies and more of a way to build up intensity. In the worst light it managed to do both :p.

I don't know much about him to be honest

I think all you need to see to figure out why he liked this video is his blog. You could probably insert just about any frame from Beyonce's video between that minimalist stuff and it'd fit just fine.

I'm still not getting why people are claiming it to be so super double dooper amazing.

Thats fine. It's just a dance video, though one I really enjoyed.
posted by The Devil Tesla at 3:57 AM on September 15, 2009


If I talk to people like they stupid as hell
do that mean God gone make my people stupid as hell
do that mean God gone make my kids be stupid as well


Apparently God didn't bother waiting for the kids to show up.
posted by bwg at 3:57 AM on September 15, 2009


Honestly I think Kanye's interruptions, and this one in particular, are hilarious. Mostly because the responses are so full of easy outrage and the level of seriousness in response to this has been ridiculously disproportionate to the stature of the venue he crashed. I mean, it's the MTV video awards. Even further, it's an awards show, where celebrities get together to celebrate their wonderful celebrity and entertain the pop-culture obsessed people at home who are into that kind of stuff. Especially with his history of being a jackass you would expect maybe a laugh here and there but it's all finger-wagging seriousness and indignant celebrity tweets. How brave of you to call Kanye a jerk! And before you point out he ruined that girl's moment, keep in mind she didn't produce the entire video by herself; the creative teams behind these videos don't get any recognition, just the entertainer that [may have] wrote the song and made their pretty face available. If Kanye being a douchebag made her cry perhaps she takes herself too seriously? Come on, it's a money machine! Kanye just made MTV and that girl a bunch of money, plus gave Beyonce the assist to look like a wonderful person! And Obama, too, go back to trying to pass mediocre health care reform and stop sharing opinions with loose-fingered reporters. Everyone else, get a hobby, stop caring so much about people you don't know.

I'm the voice of a generation!
posted by palidor at 4:00 AM on September 15, 2009 [23 favorites]


THAT'S THE LAST STRAW!
posted by molecicco at 4:02 AM on September 15, 2009


his blog

The current apology is a bit more thoughtful than the "at least her mom likes her" thing that made the rounds before:

I feel like Ben Stiller in "Meet the Parents" when he messed up everything and Robert De Niro asked him to leave... That was Taylor's moment and I had no right in any way to take it from her. I am truly sorry.
posted by effbot at 4:03 AM on September 15, 2009


Kanye West doesn't care about white people.
posted by billysumday at 4:04 AM on September 15, 2009 [5 favorites]


Or maybe: Kanye West doesn't care about country singers.
posted by billysumday at 4:04 AM on September 15, 2009


In short, there are few music videos around as inspired.

That's like saying there are few toaster pastries around with the sugary goodness of pop tarts.
Exactly. Both are the TRUTH.
posted by The Devil Tesla at 4:04 AM on September 15, 2009 [2 favorites]


Rich guy acts like an ass in public. News at eleven!
posted by From Bklyn at 4:05 AM on September 15, 2009


Ruh roh. President Obama called Kanye a "jackass." Here we go again.
posted by fourcheesemac at 4:07 AM on September 15, 2009


Wait, I don't get it. Why is it bad that Obama called Kanye a jackass? Who exactly is he offending? Wouldn't 98% of Americans agree that Kanye is a jackass?
posted by billysumday at 4:11 AM on September 15, 2009 [8 favorites]


Why is it bad that Obama called Kanye a jackass?

I would less say that it's bad and more just bizarre.
posted by The Devil Tesla at 4:14 AM on September 15, 2009


We don't need no Muslin Kenyans disrespecting our blacks. We can do that our damn selves.
posted by stavrogin at 4:14 AM on September 15, 2009


(Psst... PenDevil... Katrina telethon... Bush doesn't hate black people enough to want to attack the twin towers.)

Whoops, I stand corrected.
posted by PenDevil at 4:30 AM on September 15, 2009


Do real people actually watch MTV?
Odd.
posted by jan murray at 4:31 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


I know we're supposed to hate Cracked for their sophomoric humor, but...maybe?
posted by kittyprecious at 4:32 AM on September 15, 2009 [5 favorites]


Having an established journalist tweeting off-the-record remarks he found in raw material made available for a specific use by another network, removing the context and adding lame editorializing in the process, is perhaps a more interesting story. At least if you're interested in journalism rather than the antics of spoiled performers.

The question is of course whether Moran will sell more records when his employer is "taking steps to ensure that [what he just did] will not happen again"?
posted by effbot at 4:33 AM on September 15, 2009 [3 favorites]


I'm still not getting why people are claiming it to be so super double dooper amazing.

Truly. It seems to fall squarely within that time-honored tradition of the "wear-next-to-nothing-and-shake-your-ass-around-yet-demand-to-be-treated-like-a-queen" video. Nothing new.
posted by Thorzdad at 4:44 AM on September 15, 2009 [2 favorites]


Of course you guys don't like that Beyonce track! It's not fucking Arcade Fire or whatever the God damn.

Personally, after hearing it a couple times on the radio I caught myself singing "Single Ladies". Woman can sing. Song is catchy.
posted by kbanas at 4:53 AM on September 15, 2009 [14 favorites]


Not wishing to wave the flag for Blighty, but this, and palidor's comment about disproportionate outrage, reminded me of Jarvis Cocker's attempted interruption of Michael Jackson's (of blessed memory) performance of Earth Song at the Brit Awards, another meaningless industry rubdown, in 1996. That was, in many ways, a concise and entirely appropriate response to the situation, involving as it did wandering into a throng of leprous children and kneeling rabbis and waving his bottom about a bit.

There's a clip of Jarvis discussing it, here (YouTube link), with some footage that shows just how limited in ambition it was, and which also quotes the Jackson response - sickened, saddened, shocked, upset, cheated, angry, curious (blue).

So, a structured protest against Taylor Swift I could certainly understand, but a protest on behalf of another competitor not so much.

(Incidentally, anyone taking a revisionist view in the light of recent tragic events should really check out the full performance of Earth Song that Cocker crashed - another YT link here. It really is abominable.)
posted by DNye at 4:56 AM on September 15, 2009 [2 favorites]


Kanye and Hennessey. Best buds forever.

YoungAmerican did a good write up on why Kanye maybe is the way he is.
posted by P.o.B. at 4:56 AM on September 15, 2009 [6 favorites]


Next year I'm going to rush the stage to demand an award for Single Ladies in Mayberry.
posted by Horace Rumpole at 4:58 AM on September 15, 2009 [2 favorites]


It was no Brandon Block vs Ronnie Wood
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 4:58 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


Don't get me wrong. I think Kanye was a jackass, and Obama was fine saying so, and all that.

But mark my words. It is all anyone will talk about on the teevee today.
posted by fourcheesemac at 5:14 AM on September 15, 2009


Kanye West is just so misunderstood! LEAVE KANYE ALONE!!!
posted by billysumday at 5:21 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


Yeah, can everyone in America, including our president and our post-modern rappers just stop and take a deep breath and not come out of their faces with totally fucking bonkers shit for five minutes, please? That would be awesome, thanks.
posted by Divine_Wino at 5:22 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


America reacts.
posted by prefpara at 5:27 AM on September 15, 2009


When he laughed, respectable messageboards burst with capslock,
and when he cried the internets died in their tweets.
posted by kid ichorous at 5:35 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


How thoroughly American that even our conspiracy theories are vapid small-time affairs.
posted by boo_radley at 5:38 AM on September 15, 2009 [3 favorites]


Definitely suspicious that he was booked to be Leno's first guest. I heard a segment on NPR yesterday about how important the first booked guest is for a new talk show. He talked about how whoever booked Hugh Grant (right after the hooker incident) for Letterman's first interview was a genius and the buzz generated by the interview was what really allowed the show to take off. It's awfully convenient that Leno's first guest suddenly got a lot more interesting just before the show.
posted by diogenes at 5:41 AM on September 15, 2009


A friend of mine curated a small, independent dance show recently. It was a series of clever interpretations to Kanye's "808s & Heartbreak" and ran for a weekend. Then, on opening night, Kanye showed up. He was very receptive, even though one of the interpretations (everyone's least favorite) consisted of a "performance artist" yelling about how his album sucked and sticking pork chops in her vagina. Afterwards, he was a totally nice guy. And the fact that he showed up helped the show sell out every night afterwards.

That said, if you want to interrupt a speech at the VMAs, you really should be wearing lederhosen and a fake beard.
posted by fungible at 5:42 AM on September 15, 2009 [4 favorites]


Definitely suspicious that he was booked to be Leno's first guest.

The Submarine
Why do the media keep running stories saying suits are back? Because PR firms tell them to. One of the most surprising things I discovered during my brief business career was the existence of the PR industry, lurking like a huge, quiet submarine beneath the news. Of the stories you read in traditional media that aren't about politics, crimes, or disasters, more than half probably come from PR firms.
posted by kid ichorous at 5:45 AM on September 15, 2009 [4 favorites]


If anyone deserves the "Christ, what an asshole" one-liner applied to him, it's Kanye West.
posted by armage at 5:48 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


Staged.

Hey's confusing signifier and signified. He's not the nerd anymore, he's the bully. When he stands up for what he believes in, he's not sticking it to the man, he's stepping on the little guy.

Methinks someone may be putting a little too much unnecessary thought into this ludicrous spectacle. Yay Saussure!

Of course you guys don't like that Beyonce track! It's not fucking Arcade Fire or whatever the God damn.

Of course mefi doesn't like everybody's favorite song/video because it's not yesterday's boring indie hipster bullcrap! Yay Fiery Furnaces!

Or maybe: Kanye West doesn't care about country singers.

Thumbs up to the kid from Nashville (via southeastern Pennsylvania) and all, and her video was cute, but if Taylor Swift is a country singer, I'm Benedict XVI.
posted by blucevalo at 5:49 AM on September 15, 2009 [4 favorites]


kid ichorous, now I have to go watch The Sweet Smell of Success. It actually is super double dooper amazing.
posted by Elmore at 5:51 AM on September 15, 2009


So videos have returned from telling stories, from adding something to the song, to mere footage of the performers? And this is "inspired"?

I guess I can at least look forward to seeing Radiohead shake their money makers.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 5:58 AM on September 15, 2009


Taylor Swift and or her management have made moves towards making her more edgy or fun, but I don't think being interrupted and criticized in the middle of making an acceptance speech is either of those. I don't think it was staged. Looking at past behavior, it just seems that Kanye has some serious issues when it comes to awards shows and maybe he just shouldn't have access to them in the future.

It's annoying because while his own vocals are meh at best, he makes some great tracks, and now this over shadows all of that because he acted a crazy fool. Bad form, 'Ye, Bad form.

Too much being made out of Leno having him as a guest, by the way. It's a show in dire need of ratings, and they tape same day, of course they can bump whoever was supposed to be on.
posted by cavalier at 6:04 AM on September 15, 2009


As soon as we all stop talking about this Taylor Swift is going to be hosting SNL or presenting at the Oscars or some such and Kanye is going to "interrupt" her again in a staged spoof of the original event and we'll all have a good laugh and for days everyone will talk about what good sports they are a bunch of Hollywood types will be patting themselves on the back about their brilliant idea.

Then someone will make a post about it, then someone will make a Metatalk post about why we shouldn't have a post about it and then others will defend the post and someone else will post "what".

Far off in the distance, Keyboard Cat will be playing us all out.
posted by bondcliff at 6:04 AM on September 15, 2009 [47 favorites]


Were there any justice, he'll go to pull a stunt one day and the other person on the stage will kick him in the balls.

Ahh yes. I was wondering how long metafilter could go before someone gets violent. Thats a proportional response, to being a cocky bastard, right?

No.
posted by hal_c_on at 6:14 AM on September 15, 2009


Kanye West interrupted Samuel Taylor Coleridge in mid-composition

The person all up in his business from Bollocks.
posted by pracowity at 6:14 AM on September 15, 2009


If the Kanye/Swift thing was staged, then MTv has amazing pull and is even paying the faceless back up dancers to blog and twitter about it.

http://highkicksandhighhopes.blogspot.com/2009/09/vmas.html

Reading that? I find it hard to believe it was staged for show. I can believe, however, that Kanye West is a dick.
posted by FunkyHelix at 6:16 AM on September 15, 2009


I googled the Beyonce video to see what he was going on about and it showed three women in leotards dancing and slapping their butts. One of them was Beyonce. That is all.

No, that really is all.


Go to bed, dad; you're drunk.
posted by hal_c_on at 6:17 AM on September 15, 2009 [18 favorites]


Well, fortunately for Taylor Swift, she looked like a glamorous retro dream goddess land her ticket should go up in the world thanks to Kanye. This in addition to whatever musical skill and video quality she has, which I have no idea, having never heard anything by her. I would have expected Single Ladies to win. It's not awesome unless you consider it in concert with the amazing fan response, which does indeed rock. It sort of reminds me of fan responses to the Thriller video, especially poignant this year of course. It's not like people generally set out to remake, say, 'November Rain.'
posted by By The Grace of God at 6:18 AM on September 15, 2009


David Brooks cites Kanye and Joe Wilson as signs of America's lost humility.
posted by l33tpolicywonk at 6:21 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


America Responds to Kanye West

Until CNN asks me to tweet at them about it, America has not responded, thank you very much.
posted by l33tpolicywonk at 6:22 AM on September 15, 2009 [2 favorites]


Also, Beyonce is freaky hot. Why would you not have a camera on her at all times.

Yeah, she's pretty alright, but I got damn tired of seeing her face plastered EVERYWHERE all summer long, hawking Crystal Geyser to the Japanese...
posted by flapjax at midnite at 6:31 AM on September 15, 2009


I watched the Beyonce video to see what all the fuss was about (Kanye does have good taste) and now can't get past the blatant sexism of Beyonce's lyrics. Seriously? It's 2010 and we're still encouraging men to conceptualize women as objects they can own? Seriously?
posted by eustacescrubb at 6:31 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


I have very little interest in most current pop music or music videos, but I found "Single Ladies" (both song and video) completely captivating.
posted by davebush at 6:33 AM on September 15, 2009


l33tpolicywonk: "America Responds to Kanye West

Until CNN asks me to tweet at them about it, America has not responded, thank you very much.
"

I have a feeling your opinions don't reflect those of America, policy wonk.
posted by flatluigi at 6:33 AM on September 15, 2009


It's 2010 and we're still encouraging men to conceptualize women as objects they can own?

Close. They're conceptualizing women as sexual objects that men can't own.
posted by kid ichorous at 6:37 AM on September 15, 2009


Rock solid post.
posted by Artw at 6:45 AM on September 15, 2009


My god, fucking horrible. I've never even listened to Taylor Swift, but just as a human being, that must have felt terrible. I mean, look at her right after he hands back the mic. She's just standing there, mortified. She doesn't know what just happened or what she's supposed to do next -- right smack in the middle of what should have been one of the best moments of her life.

You know, I kinda liked it when Kanye West shouted that George W. Bush doesn't like black people. I mean, it was something we already knew, but he was giving voice to years of pent-up frustration and anger, so I was like, okay. Good for you.

But this? Picking on an innocent singer just because he wanted to see someone else win an award? What the fuck? I mean, WHAT THE FUCK. I've lost a lot of respect for West. I don't give a crap how much Henessy he drank. He just dishonored himself. Bigtime.
posted by Afroblanco at 6:46 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


flapjax at midnite: "she's pretty alright, but I got damn tired of seeing her face plastered EVERYWHERE all summer long, hawking Crystal Geyser to the Japanese..."

Over here in America, it's been nothing but her forthcoming absorption into the entity known as V'ger.
posted by boo_radley at 6:54 AM on September 15, 2009


I just don't get why people are so nuts about that ring video.
posted by pracowity at 6:59 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


"Best Video of All Time" has a number of contenders, none of which is "Single Ladies."

My top ten:

1) Anything by Monster Magnet. (As long as you're loaded.)
2) Run-DMC's Walk this Way (which simultaneously revived Aerosmith's career and launched Rap into a dominant mainstream musical genre)
3) Anything by Electric Six (As long as you're loaded.)
4) Ryoksopp's Remind Me (Beautiful, haunting, genius, never played on MTV.)
5) Anything by En Vogue (As long as you're... ah... lonesome, but still want to respect yourself in the morning.)
6) Michael Jackson's Thriller (Zombies, Vincent Price, and scary-sharp choreography.)
7) Anything by Weird Al (As long as you're a nerd.)
8) Sinead Oconnor's Nothing Compares 2U (Blame Prince for the spelling, but the simplicity, top notch lighting/cinematography and earnest emotion really set it apart.)
9) NiN's Animal - Terrifying, absolutely horrific, and perfect.
10) Green Jello. Nuff said.
posted by Slap*Happy at 7:01 AM on September 15, 2009 [2 favorites]


I still think the thing was staged—maybe without Swift's knowledge, but staged by other parties involved for their own benefit—but the press coverage has been entertaining. There's a whole teacup-tempest-trainwreck lulziness aspect to it that you really can't beat.

This MSN article was particularly high quality: Even Internet Hitler hates Kanye West
Nurtured on rudeness and fertilized by the desecration of everything sacred, the Internet finally found something that made even it recoil in disgust. “WHY I NEVER!” the World Wide Web exclaimed, clutching the handle of its old-timey spectacles, having morphed into Margaret Dumont, the scandalized aristocrat of Marx Brothers movie films. …
Heh.
posted by Kadin2048 at 7:02 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


Kanye is an insecure tool that wanted more media attention for himself. The Beyonce thing is just a distraction. I haven't listened to (probably) any of the artists in attendance that night, but fuck that guy. He's the perfect irritant combination of emo and rapper.
posted by Inspector.Gadget at 7:03 AM on September 15, 2009


Kanye West, Beyonce, and Taylor Swift are all three musicians whose music I have never knowingly heard. I've heard of them, but I am in serious Get Off My Lawn territory here. I honestly identify with The Onion's Jackie Harvey.

But I love horrible pop culture news, so thanks to The Devil Tesla for a very fun post!
posted by Cookiebastard at 7:04 AM on September 15, 2009


This past spring, I was fortunate enough to score a ticket to the Metropolitan Opera's 125th anniversary gala event, and, somewhat surprisingly, I saw Kanye West in attendance. I couldn't figure out whether he was just there for the publicity or what, but I kind of admired him for doing something so unexpected. I had visions of hip-hop/opera ("hip-hopera?") fusion becoming the next cool thing in music.

Then he interrupted Placido Domingo during Ch'ella mi creda from Puccini's Fanciulla del West to say that Beyonce had one of the best arias of the year.
posted by albrecht at 7:05 AM on September 15, 2009 [2 favorites]


Would a proportional response be to illegally download his albums in protest?
posted by ob at 7:09 AM on September 15, 2009



Do real people actually watch MTV?


It was my sixty-year-old mother that called to tell me about the Kanye West brouhaha, shortly after it happened. To my knowledge, it was the first time she'd ever watched the VMAs, having spent my teenaged years rolling her eyes at me for watching them and occasionallly offering up Boomer-centric criticism from the kitchen at what she perceived to be a complete dearth of talent among artists popular among my generation ("What is this Nirvana? And who are these Beastie Boys? I mean, I'll admit to being old, but they're no Jimi Hendrix/Sly Stone/The Who. That much I can certainly tell you.") So it was pretty funny to hear her hold forth on Kanye West, Pink ("Is that pastie supposed to be some sort of tribute to the Janet Jackson Nipplegate incident?") and Lady GaGa ("What sort of political point is she trying to make by wearing cheap negligee over her face?"). And even funnier considering the fact that I haven't watched the VMAs in a long time and in fact, recently canceled cable after my roommate moved out as money-saving strategy.

You can count me among those who think it the whole thing was, if not scripted, certainly encouraged (I wouldn't be surprised to learn that a Viacom sent West a gift basket containing the bottle of Hennessey shortly before the show ). I couldn't pick Taylor Swift out of a line-up if my life depended on it. She will sell a bunch of records for about six months and then disappear into the pop cultural same washed-up teenage girl haze that long ago absorbed such dubious talents as Debbie Gibson and Michelle Branch. In ten years, if she's lucky, she will still be playing state fairs and second rate street festivals in third rate American cities. Whatever your opinions of their music, both Kanye West and especially Beyonce have cast a larger cultural shadow. And I hardly think it's coincidental that the latter's extremely famous husband released his latest album last week. An album, by the way, featuring Kanye West as both performer and producer.

Kanye West may be a jackass, but both "Late Registration" and "Graduation" were pretty good records. Now if we could only get him in the crowd the next time Joe Wilson is moved to speak . . .
posted by thivaia at 7:09 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


If Kanye plans to get drunk and stagger around next year's MVAs interrupting various acceptance speeches and generally being the drunk uncle at a wedding, I'll tune in and watch.
But if not, forget it.
posted by rocket88 at 7:11 AM on September 15, 2009


I just don't get why people are so nuts about that ring video.

In t-minus seven days, someone's going to have a lot of trouble crawling out of my OLPC laptop monitor.
posted by kid ichorous at 7:12 AM on September 15, 2009


Ruh roh. President Obama called Kanye a "jackass." Here we go again.

President Obama is just angling for a beer with Taylor Dane. That's who Obama thinks that Kanye interrupted. Heh, stupid president. He wants to "tell it to her heart."
posted by NoMich at 7:13 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


I don't think it's completely off base to think that Leno's people could have contacted Kayne West (or his handlers) and said "hey, you're going to be on the premiere of Jay at 10 and we want a lot of people watching. maybe you could do something at the MTV music awards that would be talked about?"

of course, if that is the case, then what it really shows is a lack of imagination.

I don't watch Leno or MTV but I do watch Letterman so I've been interested in this.
posted by betsybetsy at 7:14 AM on September 15, 2009


hal_c_on : Ahh yes. I was wondering how long metafilter could go before someone gets violent. Thats a proportional response, to being a cocky bastard, right?

To a cocky bastard, no; but I would consider it a "proportional response" by a person expecting a carefully planned and scripted award presentation, to seeing a random drunk guy rush the stage and lunge for you (even if he just wanted the mike, she (supposedly) had no way of knowing that).

If not a total PR stunt, imagine the same scene with someone like Pink or Eminem or one of the "old school" rappers , in place of the 19 year old waif - Kanye would have crawled offstage picking up his teeth on the way out.
posted by pla at 7:16 AM on September 15, 2009


I beleive that it was staged in that it happened on a stage.
posted by Artw at 7:17 AM on September 15, 2009 [5 favorites]


>> It's 2010 and we're still encouraging men to conceptualize women as objects they can own?

> Close. They're conceptualizing women as sexual objects that men can't own.


Almost. They're conceptualizing women as sexual objects that men can't own, until they put a ring on it get married.
posted by nooneyouknow at 7:18 AM on September 15, 2009 [2 favorites]


Seriously? It's 2010 and we're still encouraging men to conceptualize women as objects they can own? Seriously?

Yeah, a lot of modern R&B is like that. How many songs are just a variation of "If you want to sleep with me, you're gonna have to buy me things!" It's sort of like hiphop and the constant shilling for brand names.

Not saying that either genre is necessarily more materialistic than "Rock n' Roll" -- I guess it just manifests differently. Just how do you afford your rock n' roll lifestyle?
posted by Afroblanco at 7:19 AM on September 15, 2009


Surely this will be the thing that brings Bush down!
posted by mazola at 7:26 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


I just watched a series of Taylor Smith videos. I'm always concerned when people say something is not country music, because it's a broad form that has historically incorporated pop styles, from bluegrass absorbing jazz's improvisational structure to Western Swing borrowing from mainstream swing and boogie woogie.

But her music is pop music dressed up with an occasional lap steel guitar, and that just doesn't cut it. Who is she being marketed to that desperately needs to listen to bland pop and pretend it is country?
posted by Astro Zombie at 7:26 AM on September 15, 2009 [2 favorites]


the problem with the conspiracy theory is simple: in order for the scene to have been staged, wouldn't that mean that Kanye would have had to be sober enough to follow cues?
posted by happyroach at 7:27 AM on September 15, 2009


Swift, rather. I've never seen a video by suspense writer Taylor Smith. They'd probably be closer to country.
posted by Astro Zombie at 7:28 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


To paraphrase Dennis Leary, how come Jim Carroll is dead and we can't get Kanye West into a helicopter?
posted by Ber at 7:29 AM on September 15, 2009


Has anybody asked Glenn Beck if this was staged? He's got just the mind we need right now. I would love to see one of his charts related to this. -- Kanye West's uncle is married to the secretary at the caterer for Viacom who once worked at a temp agency that supplied workers to ACORN! Connect the dots people!!!
posted by diogenes at 7:30 AM on September 15, 2009


Seriously? It's 2010 and we're still encouraging men to conceptualize women as objects they can own? Seriously?

See, the video is so fucking good it's going to win again next year. I'm missing something, am I supposed to be wearing 3D glasses?
posted by Elmore at 7:31 AM on September 15, 2009


I'm a little late, first it seems pretty obvious that Kanye was letting his Henny do the talking. Let's all ignore it, and give a nice Oprah's couch apology on Leno.

Anyway it wasn't even the best video fo the year: The BPA - Toejam with David Byrne!

Plus the punk side of me is really upset. I don't think FEAR would have apologized. I don't think they'd be escorted out, I think they'd be bleeding running from a bunch of angry cops and causing a million bucks in damage along the way:

Fear's historic SNL appearance.

Also, John Joseoph on Fear, Belushi and the historic performance.
posted by geoff. at 7:39 AM on September 15, 2009 [3 favorites]


I watched the Beyonce video to see what all the fuss was about (Kanye does have good taste) and now can't get past the blatant sexism of Beyonce's lyrics. Seriously? It's 2010 and we're still encouraging men to conceptualize women as objects they can own? Seriously?

Heh, I loved that video, lyrics and all. Oddly enough, I find that it has a convoluted feminist message.

Obviously the narrator wanted to be married, the man in question balked, so she told him to stuff it and moved on. Good for her.
posted by kathrineg at 7:44 AM on September 15, 2009 [2 favorites]


Just how do you afford your rock n' roll lifestyle?

Employee discount. Also, pimping.
posted by thivaia at 7:46 AM on September 15, 2009 [2 favorites]


I have no idea where the "owning" women thing is coming in, unless you think that modern-day marriage is about ownership.

Look at the gay marriage movement--marriage obviously has several legal and social benefits. Ownership? What?
posted by kathrineg at 7:47 AM on September 15, 2009


This seems easy to fix for Kanye from a PR perspective. Why not just release a song, dedicate it to Taylor, and give all the proceeds to a charity of her choice as a way of saying "Sorry" and showing humility. Everyone wins.
posted by josher71 at 7:48 AM on September 15, 2009


I couldn't pick Taylor Swift out of a line-up if my life depended on it. She will sell a bunch of records for about six months and then disappear into the pop cultural same washed-up teenage girl haze that long ago absorbed such dubious talents as Debbie Gibson and Michelle Branch.

You think? Her debut single came out in 2006 and made the top ten on the country charts. She's been cranking out the hits ever since.

Just because you don't know who someone is, doesn't make them a flash in the pan.
posted by padraigin at 7:53 AM on September 15, 2009 [5 favorites]


Employee discount. Also, pimping.

This pimping that you speak of - what is the level of difficulty involved?
posted by Afroblanco at 7:53 AM on September 15, 2009 [4 favorites]


Everything about that Beyonce video makes me feel like I shouldn't like it, but watching Beyonce shake her booty is sort of hypnotizing.

To be fair, it does not make me cringe the way Taylor Swift's video does.
posted by lexicakes at 7:56 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


Taylor Swift's video is really just...the song is stalker-esque and a bit sexist, their attempt to cast Taylor Swift as the dating underdog is bizarre, and their classification of it as country is wrong.
posted by kathrineg at 8:00 AM on September 15, 2009


I agree, best video of the year.
posted by flatluigi at 8:05 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


At least we might get a meme out of this. The structure is as follows:

Kayne West just busted in on ________ and said he's gonna let you finish, but _____________ has the best ____________ of all time.

EG: Kayne just busted in on Law and Order and said I'm gonna you finish, but The Wire was the best cop show of all time.

Kayne just busted in on Kanye and said I'm gonna let you finish, but Old Dirty Bastard had the best award show interruption of all time.

I have already found this structure to be very useful.
posted by Astro Zombie at 8:05 AM on September 15, 2009 [9 favorites]


Taylor Swift is good, but Beyonce is for the children.
posted by box at 8:05 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


kathrineg : unless you think that modern-day marriage is about ownership.

Bingo. You can have a consensual, monogamous, long-term partnership with someone without needing to invoke legal and/or religious bondage. I have such a relationship myself, 15 years and holding.


Look at the gay marriage movement--marriage obviously has several legal and social benefits.

I would use the same point for the opposite stance - Those "legal and social benefits" arise solely from the proprietorial nature of Marriage. Without that, what do you have? "A consensual, monogamous, long-term partnership" - Which doesn't require invoking either permission (or enforcement) from your deity or Uncle Sam.

Now, I'll grant that Western culture has moved away from the "man owns wife" idea, and moved more toward a theoretically equal partnership (mutual ownership of shared assets - A two-principle S-corp, if you will)... But that still has "ownership" as a very real and unavoidable basis.
posted by pla at 8:06 AM on September 15, 2009


Oooh, madlibs! Channeling inner 8 year old:

Kayne West just busted in on __butts__ and said he's gonna let you finish, but ___George Washington___ has the best ___weiner___ of all time.
posted by stavrogin at 8:12 AM on September 15, 2009 [7 favorites]


They're just as funny as I remember.
posted by stavrogin at 8:12 AM on September 15, 2009


I'm cooler than all of you because for the past couple of days I've been saying "Jordin Sparks" when I really mean "Taylor Swift." Now that I know the word "taylor" is involved, I'm getting a little closer, though I do keep saying "Taylor Dane," "Taylor Hicks," and "Taylor Ham."

Beyonce has had better songs. kathrineg says: Oddly enough, I find that it has a convoluted feminist message.

I guess I can see that after a more thorough read of the lyrics, but what really gets me is the "shoulda put a ring on it" part. My girlfriend and I cohabitate, have been together the better part of six years, and have no intention of getting married anytime soon. But according to Beyonce, my girlfriend can cheat on me whenever she wants because I haven't dropped a couple of Gs on a little glass-looking rock? Fuck that noise. What a stupid message for a rich person to be spreading to people who should be spending their money on more responsible stuff.

Of course, Beyonce is right at the top of my Celebrity Exceptions-to-Monogamy List, so if I ever have a shot at getting with her you should all deny that you know anyone called hifiparasol who spreads such radical anti-Beyonce messages.
posted by hifiparasol at 8:14 AM on September 15, 2009


Bingo. You can have a consensual, monogamous, long-term partnership with someone without needing to invoke legal and/or religious bondage. I have such a relationship myself, 15 years and holding.

You don't NEED to invoke "legal and/or religious bondage" to have a wonderful consensual, monogamous, long-term partnership, but it makes a lot of things a whole hell of a lot easier.


I would use the same point for the opposite stance - Those "legal and social benefits" arise solely from the proprietorial nature of Marriage. Without that, what do you have? "A consensual, monogamous, long-term partnership" - Which doesn't require invoking either permission (or enforcement) from your deity or Uncle Sam.

Well, I'm a fan of the enforcement that the government provides during the dissolution of marriage. If you're not, then I guess you shouldn't get married.
posted by kathrineg at 8:14 AM on September 15, 2009


It's not enough to love someone, you have to show them in carats how much you love them. If you don't they won't be bitter, but they'll jiggle around with their two pals for a while, just to let you know. That they're not bitter about not getting the carats.
posted by Elmore at 8:17 AM on September 15, 2009


Kanye also expressed, through his hair style, that his favorite Farscape character is Zhaan.
posted by dirigibleman at 8:17 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


I guess I can see that after a more thorough read of the lyrics, but what really gets me is the "shoulda put a ring on it" part. My girlfriend and I cohabitate, have been together the better part of six years, and have no intention of getting married anytime soon. But according to Beyonce, my girlfriend can cheat on me whenever she wants because I haven't dropped a couple of Gs on a little glass-looking rock? Fuck that noise. What a stupid message for a rich person to be spreading to people who should be spending their money on more responsible stuff.

I'm not really seeing the message that you should cheat on people willy-nilly until you're married. Just that you should marry someone who wants to get married, lest they leave you and then rub themselves on strange men in a club.

She didn't say it had to be an expensive ring...and it's obviously metonymy! The ring is just shorthand for marriage.
posted by kathrineg at 8:18 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


I think Kanye raises a good point here and I'm just afraid his antics somehow diminish the message that Beyoncé has one of the best videos of all time.
posted by mazola at 8:18 AM on September 15, 2009


It's not enough to love someone, you have to show them in carats how much you love them. If you don't they won't be bitter, but they'll jiggle around with their two pals for a while, just to let you know. That they're not bitter about not getting the carats.

Where did she say it has to be a huge diamond ring? You're reading your own weird stereotypes about women into this.
posted by kathrineg at 8:18 AM on September 15, 2009 [2 favorites]


Did I say she demanded it be huge? Stop reading into what I'm not reading into. Ta.
posted by Elmore at 8:20 AM on September 15, 2009


I think people might be taking the Beyonce song a bit too literally. "shoulda put a ring on it" is catchier than "expressed your commitment in a way we are both comfortable with."
posted by chunking express at 8:20 AM on September 15, 2009 [11 favorites]


Are we sure Kanye West isn't a new Sacha Baron Cohen character? Have they been seen in the same room together?
posted by mkultra at 8:27 AM on September 15, 2009 [7 favorites]


The ring is just shorthand for marriage.

I can sort of buy this because (as chunking mentions) the team of writers who composed the song had to be concerned with rhythm, and "if you like it than you should have proposed to it" doesn't really fit. But you've got to admit she's harnessing a pre-existing message here, that if men are serious about a relationship that they'll drop the requisite cash to let their ladies know it via an arbitrarily expensive tradition. You can't just totally remove the song from its social context.

I also don't think she's saying that women should cheat on their fellas unless they get a ring, just that cheating is acceptable until the point that a ring-for-monogamy transaction is made.

Kanye West just busted in on hifiparasol and said he's gonna let you finish, but pla had the best indictment-of-marriage post of all time. Shoulda previewed, motherfucker.
posted by hifiparasol at 8:28 AM on September 15, 2009


As someone who's unfamiliar with the works of Kanye, Beyonce and Taylor Swift, even I think it's a dick move. Kelly Clarkson (again, haven't listened to her stuff) put it very well.
posted by Halloween Jack at 8:28 AM on September 15, 2009


President Obama called Kanye a "jackass."

Barack Obama doesn't care about... oh, wait....
posted by tzikeh at 8:28 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


...of course, this is also the woman who sang the crazy-awesome "Independent Woman," which I think has a pretty strong feminist message of financial self-sufficiency, so against that backdrop (and in conjunction with some of the other lyrics in "Single Ladies") I could sort of appreciate any claims that a dime-store ring would be acceptable. So I'm really just splitting hairs here. I still don't like the song.
posted by hifiparasol at 8:31 AM on September 15, 2009


I don't understand Beyonce's song. She had a boyfriend, Jay-Z, who did put a ring on her finger. And Kayne West well this is his thing, he interrupts people and shows to put him self in the light. I believe it was the MTV Europe music award he went on stage because he didn't win an award and complained. As for Taylor Swift shes not your typical pop star, she writes her own music and actually plays an instrument. Of course I find Taylor Swift absolutely adorable so I may be a bit biased.
posted by lilkeith07 at 8:32 AM on September 15, 2009


eustacescrubb: can't get past the blatant sexism of Beyonce's lyrics. Seriously? It's 2010 and we're still encouraging men to conceptualize women as objects they can own? Seriously?

As much as I would like to be bothered by the ridiculous message of male possession of female sexuality, I can't get past the incredible abuse of the antecedent in the lyrics. If you like it then you shoulda put a ring on it-- either Beyonce thinks sex and her finger are the same thing, or she wants a ring on her vagina, or the man in question really, really, really liked that one finger of hers.
posted by shakespeherian at 8:35 AM on September 15, 2009 [8 favorites]


I didn't think I would be explaining Beyonce lyrics at Metafilter, but in the song, the singer broke up with her ex-boyfriend because he wouldn't propose to her.
Up in the club (club)
We just broke up (Up)
I'm doing my own lil' thing
The ex-boyfriend is jealous with the singer's new romantic partner, but the singer tells him he had his chance and he did not take it.
Dont pay him any attention
Cried my tears, for three good years
Ya can’t be mad at me

There is no cheating going on in the song. The (three-year) relationship with the former boyfriend is over. I agree with kathrineg that the ring is an obvious use of metonymy.

lilkeith07: I don't understand Beyonce's song. She had a boyfriend, Jay-Z, who did put a ring on her finger.

This is a work of fiction, perhaps inspired by incidents in Beyonce's life.
posted by demiurge at 8:39 AM on September 15, 2009 [6 favorites]


OK, that makes sense.
posted by hifiparasol at 8:41 AM on September 15, 2009


Yo Metafilter, I'm really happy for you and Imma let you finish, but Joe Wilson was one of the greatest interruption threads of all time.
posted by Monsters at 8:43 AM on September 15, 2009 [2 favorites]


"Toni Braxton didn't write 'Unbreak My Heart', and her boyfriend didn't die."
posted by haveanicesummer at 8:44 AM on September 15, 2009


Rasputina also humbly requests that you put a ring on it.
posted by Afroblanco at 8:44 AM on September 15, 2009


Wait, I don't get it. Why is it bad that Obama called Kanye a jackass? Who exactly is he offending? Wouldn't 98% of Americans agree that Kanye is a jackass?

It's not bad, and I think it's pretty significant. If Kanye weren't such an insufferable jerk, a lot would be read into the kerfuffle as YA example (true or not) of "safe, bland" music put out by white musician Taylor Swift (side note: she's from my hometown in suburban PA- the country styling is not authentic, but the overachiever is) trumping "better, more authentic" music put out by black musician Beyonce. At its heart, it does point up what continues to be a real problem in mainstream music.

I'm sure that, his boorish behavior aside, there's a strong feeling among African Americans that Kanye's on the right side of the Beyonce vs. Taylor Swift argument. I don't think Obama's ever going to weigh in on the state of race in American pop music, but for a prominent black man to call out the bad behavior of another prominent black man, to clarify that the unassailability of your larger point does not excuse the way you make it (c.f. Bill Cosby), is a good thing for everyone.
posted by mkultra at 8:44 AM on September 15, 2009


Also the number of "Is this something I would need a TV to understand?"-ish comments in this thread is mindboggling.
posted by haveanicesummer at 8:45 AM on September 15, 2009


If Kanye gets assasinated by a white supremacist based on this and the GBDCABP Katrina incident, I called it.
posted by haveanicesummer at 8:48 AM on September 15, 2009


I hate the lyrics, but Single Ladies is a fucking fabulous song.
posted by Ouisch at 8:49 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


I'mma let you finish
posted by CunningLinguist at 8:52 AM on September 15, 2009 [4 favorites]


How do we know that Beyonce isn't talking about a cock ring? I haven't heard the song yet but it's on my list of things to do before the end of the year.
posted by Sailormom at 8:57 AM on September 15, 2009


Wait, wait. If you liked it then you should have put a cock ring on it? What is it he liked, then? His cock? Another cock?

This song is far more intriguing than I had at first realized.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 9:00 AM on September 15, 2009


If you liked [your cock] you shoulda put a ring on it.

/bobbitt
posted by Ouisch at 9:05 AM on September 15, 2009


This just in: Beyonce is incredibly hot.

For a robot.
posted by vibrotronica at 9:06 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


Hey Sailormom, I'm happy for you, I'mma let you finish, but Karl Rove's Dad had one of the best cock rings of all time.
posted by Elmore at 9:06 AM on September 15, 2009


9) NiN's Animal - Terrifying, absolutely horrific, and perfect.

Well, NIN did a song called Closer, and Pearl Jam did a song called Animal. But I'm pretty sure NIN never did a song called "Animal".

/pedant
posted by hippybear at 9:08 AM on September 15, 2009


This just in: Beyonce is incredibly hot.

For a robot.


Kanye's girlfriend is way more roboty than Beyonce.

Also-- DON'T....DATE.....ROBOTTTTTSSSSSS.
posted by haveanicesummer at 9:08 AM on September 15, 2009


Kanye's girlfriend is way more roboty than Beyonce.

What are you talking about? Did you see that video? They didn't even bother to put the fake skin on her left arm! Shit's all C-3P0!

They're probably both robots.
posted by vibrotronica at 9:11 AM on September 15, 2009


And the name of that planet was EARTH!
posted by Artw at 9:14 AM on September 15, 2009


What are you talking about? Did you see that video? They didn't even bother to put the fake skin on her left arm! Shit's all C-3P0!

Now that I think of it Destiny's Child DOES sound like the name of a sci-fi short story about the first android girl to achieve fame and fortune in mainstream society before being revealed (to herself and the world) for what she is and sadly, inevitibly falling into despair and madness. Created by man, and with a limited palatte for understanding and interpreting this newly hostile world around her, she turns against us, and we are powerless to stop her.

Especially when she discovers and exclaims, "I have machine guns in my butt!?"
posted by haveanicesummer at 9:15 AM on September 15, 2009


[NOT ROBOTIST]
posted by vibrotronica at 9:17 AM on September 15, 2009


[NOT ROBOTIST]
posted by vibrotronica


vibrotonica? Sounds like a robot name to me. Maybe not robotist, but I would accuse, ROBOT-IC!

Also maybe Kanye doesn't use autotune that's just HOW A ROBOT SOUNDS!!!!!!!
posted by haveanicesummer at 9:23 AM on September 15, 2009


And obviously Obama only critisized him in order to not be tarred with the same "obviously a robot" brush as Kanye, thus the birthers are partially right, he wasn't born in the USA, he was MADE here.
posted by haveanicesummer at 9:26 AM on September 15, 2009


Now you are beginning to see the truth, haveanicesummer. But be warned: You have no idea how deep the rabbit hole goes.
posted by vibrotronica at 9:28 AM on September 15, 2009


I'm not convinced that it was staged. The producers would have had a cameraman on each of the nominees for the reaction-shot. So they were prepared to cut to any of them at a moment's notice.
posted by KirkJobSluder at 9:33 AM on September 15, 2009


Wait, so that song isn't about genital piercings?
posted by electroboy at 9:35 AM on September 15, 2009


I've never heard of Kanye West, Taylor Swift, Beyonce, or MetaFilter. How did I get here? Who are you people! Aughhhhh!
posted by diogenes at 9:40 AM on September 15, 2009 [3 favorites]


Apparently Beyonce's also a Buzz Lightyear fan. "To infinity and beyond!"
posted by kirkaracha at 9:41 AM on September 15, 2009


The stupidest thing about all of this is that Kanye was so outraged that Beyonce didn't win best Female Video that he had to go on stage and be an asshole about it, when later in the evening she actually won the bigger award, Video of the Year. So he was even wrong about what he was trying to say--MTV audiences DID in fact think that Beyonce had the best video of the year, too.

Kanye: you're a dumb ass, get some manners and stop getting so shitfaced in public.
posted by LooseFilter at 9:42 AM on September 15, 2009 [2 favorites]


Koda Kumi doesn't want a ring, she just wants to steal your treasure map.
posted by Lentrohamsanin at 9:42 AM on September 15, 2009


I'm sure that, his boorish behavior aside, there's a strong feeling among African Americans that Kanye's on the right side of the Beyonce vs. Taylor Swift argument.

Why would you think so???
posted by kathrineg at 9:46 AM on September 15, 2009


Anyway, all this crap isn't music.

Most people read that and they think "oh you're just old". And people have been saying things like that since Benny Goodman or Scott Joplin.

But I'm sorry to say, this time you're wrong. It truly is NOT music. It's crap.
posted by Zambrano at 9:51 AM on September 15, 2009


I agree with kathrineg that the ring is an obvious use of metonymy.

if they were in a church instead of a nightclub, it'd be holy metronymy
posted by pyramid termite at 9:53 AM on September 15, 2009 [2 favorites]


Having an established journalist tweeting off-the-record remarks he found...

Yeah, how's that work exactly? Because if tweeting is a viable path for circumventing the whole on-the-record/ off-the-record thing, I predict things are going to get really interesting for a short while before people decide to stop talking to journalists all together.
posted by quin at 9:54 AM on September 15, 2009


Just how do you afford your rock n' roll lifestyle?

I make sell little felt animals on Etsy.
posted by dirty lies at 9:54 AM on September 15, 2009


So I'm not the only one bothered that Kanye is dating Hooper from Frisky Dingo?
posted by fermezporte at 9:54 AM on September 15, 2009


this crap isn't music

Are we really saying this non-ironically in 2009?
posted by everichon at 10:08 AM on September 15, 2009


I'm a bit baffled at those who are all "meh" on the Beyonce video. I can see not liking it for whatever reason, but "it's just another video, nothing to see here" seems kind of disingenuous. Love it or hate it, it is a standout video. And as far as pop singers who dance, Beyonce and Shakira are the only ones approaching the level of being dancers who happen to sing every once in a while. And both have these blandly perfect images wildly contrasted by their hyperkinetic, ultra-sexual , and at times downright weird dance styles.

Watching Shakira's latest video (possibly nsfw due to excessive gyration) one can't help but be baffled at all the production. Totally unneccesary. Just let us watch The woman do the robot for three minutes. Which is what the Beyonce video is. And yes, Beyonce and Shakira did a video together, and no, the human body isn't supposed to be able to do such things. Especially not anywhere children can see.

You know how whenever a movie or book is set in a near-future dystopian setting, and the attempts at showing the pop-culture of the time is mostly just a the current trends taken to their logical extreme? I think right now pop culture is in many ways ahead of that curve. Both in it's weirdness and in it's total iron-fisted corporate pre-packaging.

I dont think the thing was staged, I think Kanye needs help. His apology on Leno seemed pretty genuine, and dude comes across as baffled by his own behavior as anyone. Which is a pretty good indication that the train has come off the track. And Leno surprisingly went serious, bringing up Kanye's mom, who died suddenly last year. It was an interesting moment to say the least. But from what I could tell, Kanye wasn't scheduled to be a guest, just to perform along with Jay Z.

Speaking of Jay Z, it still boggles my mind how comparitively low key him and Beyonce are as a married couple, both of whom are firmly at the top of their respective genres. It's like if Prince and Madonna got married back in the 80's, but nobody ever mentioned it.
posted by billyfleetwood at 10:12 AM on September 15, 2009 [4 favorites]


It's like if Prince and Madonna got married back in the 80's, but nobody ever mentioned it.

Except in this one Charlie Murphy anecdote about how Madonna's hook shot would make the Baby Jesus weep with its beauty and grace.
posted by haveanicesummer at 10:21 AM on September 15, 2009


Just don't call him a thug.
posted by tkchrist at 10:33 AM on September 15, 2009


Except in this one Charlie Murphy anecdote about how Madonna's hook shot would make the Baby Jesus weep with its beauty and grace.

That doesn't sound like Charlie Murphy. Bitch will fuck up your wraparound. That sounds like Charlie Murphy.
posted by Astro Zombie at 10:35 AM on September 15, 2009


The winners are told beforehand they will win. And this interruption looks staged as well.

Ms. Swift is also doing a terrible job looking surprised by it all.

It would be interesting to see if the ratings for this show have trailed-off over the years. But I don't care enough to look into it.
posted by Zambrano at 10:38 AM on September 15, 2009


The stupidest thing about all of this is that Kanye was so outraged that Beyonce didn't win best Female Video that he had to go on stage and be an asshole about it, when later in the evening she actually won the bigger award, Video of the Year.

The funny thing is that Taylor Swift wasn't even up for Video of the Year. If she had been, would she have won that too?

There's also the question of whether it's really an award for videos, or if it's just another version of the Grammy's where they are voting on the song and artist, and the video is just incidental.
posted by smackfu at 10:43 AM on September 15, 2009


Ms. Swift is also doing a terrible job looking surprised by it all.

Um, if they were going for maximum manufactured controversy I'm pretty sure "Stand there looking confused, dumbfounded and lost, with no response whatsoever, and then wait until MTV producers throw on an intro to the next award thus muting your mic before attempting to speak into it, then giving up confused and walking off" would not have been her conspiratorial instructions.

Manufactured maybe but probably not, but it really, really does not look like she was in on anything.

Plus Kanye's blog post is clearly the rantings of a mad genius and not the outcome of a focus group on controversy creation. Why do people assume vast competence in a media industry that is largely running itself aground on declining sales?
posted by haveanicesummer at 10:47 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


Does anyone have a theory on whether Kanye genuinely liked the "lyrics about being a cheerleader..." or whether that was an ironic complement?
posted by haveanicesummer at 10:51 AM on September 15, 2009


the problem with the conspiracy theory is simple: in order for the scene to have been staged, wouldn't that mean that Kanye would have had to be sober enough to follow cues?

There's only one cue, which is to jump up when Beyoncé loses. It helps to know there's something to be outraged about coming, but Viacom doesn't need to be in on it except to leak results to NBC Universal or just to release them early to give writers a head start then NBC/U breaks the embargo.

Suppose an independent actor shooting the bull making predictions guessing that Taylor Swift will be given a break because Beyoncé's going to win a bigger award1 later. Drunk Kanye overhears and gets riled up.

Chomsky says that there is no conspiracy per se, simply a system owned by a power elite that serves the purposes of its owners.

Kanye's part of a system where he needs to be ruthlessly, endlessly self-promoting. He knows he has what could be an "event" coming up and while it's also in Leno's interest to have more viewers, that's just a bonus.

Methinks someone may be putting a little too much unnecessary thought into this ludicrous spectacle.

and

How thoroughly American that even our conspiracy theories are vapid small-time affairs.

It is a distraction from more important issues, for sure. It's a nice illustration of how Manufacturing Consent works, though. What really drove it home for me was this morning's Today Show coverage of the Leno/West interview. Ouroboros indeed.

1I am amazed that no one has mentioned that Beyonce did win (ungendered) Video of the Year and Swift beat her in the ¿lesser? Best Female Video. Single Ladies was nominated in every category it qualified for (thus not Best Male Video). Where was Kanye when Britney beat Beyoncé for Best Pop Video. Perhaps Brit is too unpredictable and could have elevated her own star at the expense of Kanye's but Swift could be counted on not to fight back.
posted by morganw at 10:51 AM on September 15, 2009


Love it or hate it, it is a standout video

I'm honestly totally and completely baffled by this. The song is very catchy, yes, but the video? It's the one with Beyonce and two chicks dancing against a blank background, right? I watched it after hearing so many people praise it and kept waiting for something amazing to happen. I'm seriously asking: is it possible I saw the wrong one? Because usually when I don't like something that's very popular, I can at least understand where the appeal is, but in this case I'm just failing utterly to see what's special about the video.
posted by CunningLinguist at 10:53 AM on September 15, 2009 [10 favorites]


I have to agree with the naysayers on Beyonce's video. As far as I can tell it didn't seem to cost a million dollars OR have Pamela Anderson in it.
posted by haveanicesummer at 10:54 AM on September 15, 2009


Where was Kanye when Britney beat Beyoncé for Best Pop Video

He couldn't interrupt her: she gave her speech by tape.
posted by smackfu at 10:54 AM on September 15, 2009


I couldn't pick Taylor Swift out of a line-up if my life depended on it. She will sell a bunch of records for about six months and then disappear into the pop cultural same washed-up teenage girl haze that long ago absorbed such dubious talents as Debbie Gibson and Michelle Branch.

No way dude. She didn't need this publicity to sell records her current album was #1 on billboard for 2 months. Her first album sold 4.5 million copies this one is almost that high already and it will probably top out over 6.

She's already surpassed the Debbie Gibson/Michelle Branch levels of success. As for playing state fairs in 10 years even if she fizzles out tomorrow she already has walking away money.
posted by Bonzai at 10:56 AM on September 15, 2009 [2 favorites]


CunningLinguist: I don't particularly like the video, but if you describe it just as you did but add exclamation points then you may understand why people like it.

The song is very catchy, yes, but the video! It's the one with Beyonce and two chicks dancing against a blank background, right!
posted by haveanicesummer at 10:56 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


Just watched the Beyonce video and, yeah, "it's just another video, nothing to see here." I'm surprised anyone would call Beyonce a dancer. She does look flexible. And moving around in those shoes is impressive. But jiggling her (fine) ass and waving arms around a bit? That's supposed to be awesome?

Of course the fact that I think the song is awful doesn't help.

Oh, and, I vote "staged." Just like the Madonna/Britney kiss. They wanted to come up with some drama for the show.
posted by papercake at 11:00 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


I love, love, love, love the song. I don't get the appeal of the video.
posted by empath at 11:01 AM on September 15, 2009


I'm honestly totally and completely baffled by this. The song is very catchy, yes, but the video? It's the one with Beyonce and two chicks dancing against a blank background, right? I watched it after hearing so many people praise it and kept waiting for something amazing to happen. I'm seriously asking: is it possible I saw the wrong one? Because usually when I don't like something that's very popular, I can at least understand where the appeal is, but in this case I'm just failing utterly to see what's special about the video.

In this era of quick-cut videos, it was actually refreshing to be allowed to watch the dance moves happen, mostly in full-body shot, with a minimum of editing. (Yes, there are many edits in the video, but they are subtle and disguised.)

For a contrast, take a look at any of the dance numbers in, say, the musical film Chicago. The quick edits are so rampant that it is impossible to get a clear idea of what the dance routines might be, let alone have any idea whether those being filmed can actually perform the dances they are being portrayed as doing. This style of editing has been more and more pervasive for 20 years now, and it is the rare musician / video artist / movie maker who has the skill / willingness to go for the long take and let the audience see the dancers actually dancing.

That was the magic of Michael Jackson / early Janet Jackson videos, that was the magic of all the Fred Astaire movies... Long, extended dance sequences where you saw people perform without error, or without edits to hide the errors.

The Beyonce video isn't all that standout in many respects, but I say "good for her" about actually learning a dance routine with two other dancers, and being willing to try to execute it in as many long cuts as possible. The camera moves (and the way the dancers work with the camera) are pretty outstanding, too.

Is the video and song to my personal taste? No. But I recognize artistry when I see it, and in this case (and in current context) it was a bold and outstanding move.
posted by hippybear at 11:03 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


Oh, and, I vote "staged." Just like the Madonna/Britney kiss. They wanted to come up with some drama for the show.
posted by papercake


That was a part of a choreographed dance routine and I don't see how anyone could claim it WASN'T "staged" (also Madonna kissed Christina Aguilera a second later which no one ever remembers haha). So you might be right, but that's not really evidence that this entirely different (and more bizarrely awkward) situation was staged.
posted by haveanicesummer at 11:03 AM on September 15, 2009


If you like Beyonce's video, you really want to watch Gwen Verdon in Fosse's Walk It Out.
posted by gingerbeer at 11:04 AM on September 15, 2009


Congratulations Stagers - you have the naffest conspiracy theory yet!
posted by Artw at 11:05 AM on September 15, 2009


Those who think this was staged for ratings or for Leno are way off track. It was staged, but for much much different reasons.
This whole thing was thought up by Geithner at the 2007 Bilderberg meeting. It mostly involves Lady Gaga, Joe Jonas, and Chelsea Clinton (the Kanye/Swift thing is just a catalyst...albeit an inportant one, as you'll soon see), but the bulk of the plan hasn't even been put into action yet. Suffice to say there's a logical reason why Jimmy Fallon has his own TV show and The Detroit Lions didn't win a single game last season.
Anyway, I've already said too much. It'll all make sense in about 18 months. You won't be disappointed.
posted by rocket88 at 11:05 AM on September 15, 2009 [3 favorites]


hey are subtle and disguised.

I think at points they do some kind of cross-fading or morphing between edits in the light flashes and it looks very alien.
posted by Artw at 11:06 AM on September 15, 2009


This whole thing was thought up by Geithner at the 2007 Bilderberg meeting

Oh, you think you're joking, but you're not. Both Beyonce and Lady Gaga are tools of the illuminati.

WAKE UP SHEEPLE
posted by empath at 11:08 AM on September 15, 2009


Ruh roh. President Obama called Kanye a "jackass." Here we go again.

BARACK OBAMA DOESNT CARE ABOUT BLACK PEOPLE.
posted by katillathehun at 11:09 AM on September 15, 2009


No one tried to recreate Taylor Swift's video on YouTube.
posted by smackfu at 11:09 AM on September 15, 2009


Anyway, I've already said too much. It'll all make sense in about 18 months. You won't be disappointed.
posted by rocket88


For all you numerologists playing along at home, I think if you count the number of exclamation points in his blog posts, divide that by the total additive ranking of his singles on the billboard charts, and then multiply that by the number of celebrities who have denounced him in the past 24 hours, I think you'll be pleasently surprised.
posted by haveanicesummer at 11:09 AM on September 15, 2009


Is Kanye West a furry? His album covers give pause.
posted by haveanicesummer at 11:12 AM on September 15, 2009


Just watched the Beyonce video and, yeah, "it's just another video, nothing to see here." I'm surprised anyone would call Beyonce a dancer. She does look flexible. And moving around in those shoes is impressive. But jiggling her (fine) ass and waving arms around a bit? That's supposed to be awesome?

It's called dancing, not ass jiggling. For fuck's sake, people, do you say this about every dance video? Oh Michael Jackson was just grabbing his crotch and walking funny!
posted by kathrineg at 11:12 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


Anyway it wasn't even the best video fo the year: The BPA - Toejam with David Byrne!
posted by geoff. at 7:39 AM on September 15 [3 favorites +] [!]


Thank you geoff! Wow.

And really, all those saying that Beyonce video is "AMAZING" - are you talking about the dancing? I feel like they were not nearly in unison with their moves to make this work. If it's all about the dancing with the stark set up and lights, then really, truly, I want to see those asses thrusting at THE EXACT SAME TIME.

I'm not kidding.
posted by smartypantz at 11:21 AM on September 15, 2009


MetaFilter: really, truly, I want to see those asses thrusting at THE EXACT SAME TIME.
posted by hippybear at 11:23 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


ODB did it better.

"Wu Tang is for the children."
posted by joedan at 11:32 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


The Swift video has good moments, and it is much better than the Beyonce video. For one, I didn't get bored 1/2 way through.

But it should have been disqualified for the use of fake prescription glasses. I'm sick and tired of pretty, clear-sighted people doing nerdface to get some sympathy.

I'm off to watch Gattacca again - those glasses were real.
posted by jb at 11:39 AM on September 15, 2009


It's called dancing, not ass jiggling. For fuck's sake, people, do you say this about every dance video? Oh Michael Jackson was just grabbing his crotch and walking funny!

Um Beyonce, a , Ms. Janet Jackson would like to have a little talk with you on what "dancing" is.

I mean yeah, Beyonce is dancing. But that's not saying much, kind of along the lines of saying "Yes, a Yugo is a car." My main impression of her isn't "Wow, how does she do that" and more "She's really going to blow out her knees if she keeps crouching like that".
posted by happyroach at 11:40 AM on September 15, 2009


Obama might want to have Swift and West over for beers and lemonade.
posted by i'm being pummeled very heavily at 12:05 PM on September 15, 2009


'cuz Kanye needs to lay off the alcohol.
posted by katillathehun at 12:18 PM on September 15, 2009


I am amazed that no one has mentioned that Beyonce did win (ungendered) Video of the Year and Swift beat her in the ¿lesser? Best Female Video.

You shouldn't be. I said this way upthread.

If this was staged, poor Taylor Swift wasn't in on it. That's the only part about this that actually makes me react in any way other than 'meh'--Swift, whether you like her music or not, writes her own material and has a built up a huge fan base by working hard, much harder than most young people her age. My nieces and nephew got to meet her last week actually, after a concert, and my sister (their mom) said she was really incredibly nice in person and was happy to meet them, and made those sweet kids feel very special. So, she's good people from the limited first-hand information I have.

So all this hard work and pouring herself into her music-making, and she gets this huge mainstream recognition and some unhinged, shit-faced megalomaniac who has delusions about being the greatest living musician or some such fantasy jumps on stage and shits all over this big recognition of her talent and hard work. Hard to be more of an asshole than that, in their field.

So I don't think this is staged: Swift was clearly clueless, Kanye would have to be even stupider than he appears to think this will help him in any way, and Beyonce clearly would have had to lost her mind to let herself be pulled into this bullshit. Plus, most of all--as mentioned upthread--the music industry can't even figure out that we'd rather download music than continue buying it on useless plastic, so I'm not sure how anyone thinks the people in the industry have anywhere near the savvy to concoct something like this.

But what REALLY pisses me off is all the hours and hours of airtime and type-time and talk time that will be wasted dissecting the actions of a boor. I'm even pissed at myself for typing this comment.
posted by LooseFilter at 12:40 PM on September 15, 2009 [2 favorites]


meme
posted by exogenous at 1:03 PM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


MetaFilter: I'm even pissed at myself for typing this comment
posted by The Devil Tesla at 1:03 PM on September 15, 2009 [3 favorites]


Haha you see it's meta because I'm ashamed I actually made a tagline joke :(
posted by The Devil Tesla at 1:04 PM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


More (some VERY tasteless) takes on the kanye thing.
posted by empath at 1:14 PM on September 15, 2009


Swift was clearly clueless

She was clearly crushed. Stepping on a kitten, indeed.
posted by and for no one at 1:31 PM on September 15, 2009


Audio of Obama calling Kanye a jackass.
posted by empath at 1:40 PM on September 15, 2009 [4 favorites]


from digg:

Knock Knock.
Who's there?
Taylor Swift.
Taylor Sw--Beyoncé had one of the best knock knock jokes of all time!
posted by empath at 1:44 PM on September 15, 2009


Too soon!
posted by empath at 1:52 PM on September 15, 2009 [2 favorites]


It's called dancing, not ass jiggling. For fuck's sake, people, do you say this about every dance video? Oh Michael Jackson was just grabbing his crotch and walking funny!

I don't really talk about every dance video, but since you're responding to my comment... it seems like pretty lame dancing to me. Boring. Repetitive. Simplistic. Almost completely disconnected from the song that it was accompanying.

And I can't believe you'd compare Beyonce to Jackson. I'm not a huge Jackson fan, but the man had MOVES. Beyonce does what she can, and what she should: jiggle the parts of her people want to see jiggle.
posted by papercake at 1:57 PM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


Obama's delivery of the "jackass" line (a) rocked my ass and (b) will very soon be heard in mashup after mashup AFTER MASHUP AFTER MASHUP AFTER MASHUP.
posted by hifiparasol at 2:25 PM on September 15, 2009


Obama must have some instant reflex by now that anything that he says that is actually funny and gets laughs must have been a bad thing to say.

If it's not funny and gets laughs, that's ok though.
posted by smackfu at 2:39 PM on September 15, 2009


There's also a Kanye West "Let You Finish" Twitter account.
posted by fstorr at 2:39 PM on September 15, 2009


I'd never heard of Taylor Swift before reading this thread, but having now seen the video, I will tell you this much: If it'd been out when I was fifteen, my tragic rural nerd-girl best friend and I would have made ourselves hoarse, bellowing that shit out the windows as we drove around the back-roads. It's soppy and cliched, but there's no way I can hate it.

Also, I've gotta stand with hifiparasol on the Obama soundbite. My ass, too, was rocked.

I can't believe I'm actually weighing in on this.
posted by palmcorder_yajna at 2:40 PM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


kanyegate
posted by empath at 3:00 PM on September 15, 2009


Soy Bomb
posted by keli at 3:25 PM on September 15, 2009


Speaking as a huge Bob Dylan fan, the really great part about the Soy Bomb dude is that some people weren't sure he wasn't part of the act.
posted by box at 4:00 PM on September 15, 2009


A person should not believe in an "-ism," he should believe in himself. I quote John Lennon, "I don't believe in Beatles, I just believe in me."
posted by shockingbluamp at 4:19 PM on September 15, 2009


Watching Shakira's latest video (possibly nsfw due to excessive gyration) one can't help but be baffled at all the production. Totally unneccesary. Just let us watch The woman do the robot for three minutes.

Wow. I've enjoyed Shakira-style gyrations in the past, but that whole thing was fucking dreadful.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 5:32 PM on September 15, 2009


I have an announcement to make. I have just completed watching the Beyonce video "Single Ladies", and I am now prepared to pass judgment;



It was... Alright.

The music was sufficiently catchy, the dancing was both acceptably jiggly and robotic, and the overall effect was not offensive.

The Earth may continue to live for another solar cycle.
posted by quin at 5:34 PM on September 15, 2009


Wow, less than 48 hours, and the "Kanye West interrupting things" meme is already played out. With ever-faster Internet speeds, we'll soon be overexposing memes before they've even begun.
posted by dirigibleman at 5:42 PM on September 15, 2009


That Beyonce video could have been better.
posted by Brak at 5:52 PM on September 15, 2009


AS has been pointed out the dance in the Beyonce video was a Fosse/Verdon homage. Fosse's style was often stark and simple. The Gwen Verdon dance in particular was almost like it was caught in rehersal. Having every dancer sync up perfectly was often not the point.

That said the other point of the dance/video is to be catchy and simple enough that Beyonce's core fan base of 12-18 year old girls can actually perform the god damned thing. I mean, I hate to break it to some of you but music videos are often marketing tools to sell tracks. GASP! I know! It's true! It's like these artists want to be popular so they can make money and shit. GASP! Yes, I know! Horrible!
posted by tkchrist at 6:02 PM on September 15, 2009


I mean, I hate to break it to some of you but music videos are often marketing tools to sell tracks.

Next thing you'll say is that the Transfomers cartoon was made to sell toys.
posted by The Devil Tesla at 6:17 PM on September 15, 2009


"You do an eclectic celebration of the dance! You do Fosse, Fosse, Fosse! You do Martha Graham, Martha Graham, Martha Graham! Or Twyla, Twyla, Twyla! Or Michael Kidd, Michael Kidd, Michael Kidd, Michael Kidd! Or Madonna, Madonna, Madonna!... but you keep it all inside." (2:57)
posted by kirkaracha at 7:16 PM on September 15, 2009


"shoulda put a ring on it" is catchier than "expressed your commitment in a way we are both comfortable with."

Even if it does call to mind buying a pig at a livestock auction.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 1:49 AM on September 16, 2009


"Also the number of 'Is this something I would need a TV to understand?'-ish comments in this thread is mindboggling."

I know I'm unplugged from much of pop culture because when my friend sent me this funny motivational I didn't understand it at all. Well I got the immediate interrupt and attack part but I didn't recognize any of the people on stage, the event, or the trophy. I was guessing, thanks to Swifts single shoulder strap dress, that it was some kind of wardrobe malfunction. I couldn't figure out why he had his hand over the business end of the mic. The asshole explanation was a big let down.
posted by Mitheral at 2:01 AM on September 16, 2009


I believe the popularity of the video is explicitly connected to the dancing.
posted by Minus215Cee at 3:54 AM on September 16, 2009


Even if it does call to mind buying a pig at a livestock auction.

Wearing what shade of lipstick?
posted by hippybear at 7:24 AM on September 16, 2009


Also, this song seems too weird for pop music -- I'm surprised how dissonant the music gets and aggressive/technical the beat is.

You're not the only one: A Compositional Analysis of "Single Ladies"
posted by chalbe at 7:48 AM on September 16, 2009 [2 favorites]


Also, this song seems too weird for pop music --

I thought it was just me not getting what the young kids were into. The compositional Analysis was sweet and made me think of Bacharach...
posted by From Bklyn at 8:12 AM on September 16, 2009


Kanye was right, Justin Timberlake was fantastic in that video.
posted by sweetmarie at 7:34 PM on September 16, 2009


Well, let's ask Kanye ... what he thinks about us
posted by Comrade_robot at 8:00 AM on September 17, 2009


Thanke yow, gentil rederes, for al of youre readinges and commentez on my last poost concerninge the sparklie vampyre romaunces, of the which Ich am so very proud--

YO, I HAVE MUCHEL JOYE FOR YOWER SUCCESS, AND YE SHAL MAKE AN ENDE OF YOWER SERMONYNG, BUT BIFORE THAT DO BIFALLE, YET ICH MOOT SEYE THAT BEYONCEE HATH A BETTIR BLOGUE THAT MAKETH MOORE JAPES CONCERNYGNGE SPARKLIE VAMPYRES AND IT YS THE BEEST MIDDEL YNGLISSHE PARODIE BLOGG OF ALL TYME, OF ALL TYME, IN SECULA SECULORUM.
-QUANJE WESTE
posted by languagehat at 2:50 PM on September 18, 2009 [2 favorites]


I'll have what he's having. And make it a double, I got the weekend off.
posted by From Bklyn at 11:33 AM on September 19, 2009


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