Friday, April 8, 2011

A message of some concern

Readers, we have a problem. It's been obvious for a while and I'm going to have to come right out and say it: All of our pop stars are boring.

Think about it. Out of all the people on planet pop, is there anyone you'd take out for a pint? If you discard the ones you want to hug and kiss, it's a pretty dismal list.

Now, I'm only referring to the UK here. Over in the States, they've got Katy Perry shooting whipped cream out of her tits and scandalising Sesame Street. Kanye West is a demented Narcissus, simultaneously compelled and tormented by his own mirror image. Janelle Monae is so barking she might turn into a spaniel. And then there's Lady Gaga. You know the one - dresses in bacon, lives in an egg, not the full English Breakfast...

They are all incredible pop stars.

By contrast, let's look at the defining characteristics of Britain's best acts:

  • Tinie Tempah - loves his mum
  • Ellie Goulding - goes for a run every now and again
  • Leona Lewis - is so blessed just to be here
  • Little Boots - owns a synthesizer
  • Olly Murs - total bellend
  • Eliza Doolittle - barely registers as a living organism
  • Katy B - marrying Prince William [subs - please check]

Some would argue The X Factor is to blame for the bland, safe nature of our pop stars. I disagree. It's the tabloids.

Two of the most interesting characters the UK music industry has nurtured in recent years are Amy Winehouse and Robbie Williams. Each was hounded out of the country, perilously close to ending their lives, after being pursued and bullied by the British press. I'm not saying Amy and Robbie weren't personally responsible for those self-destructive impulses - but the tabloids helpfully led them to the edge of the precipice and whispered "bet you're too chicken to jump". If that's the way the deck is stacked, can you blame Lily Allen for getting out of the game?

But there is hope yet. Adele is pleasingly indiscreet, slagging off her ex-boyfriends and complaining about "eBay weirdos" taking pictures of "my dog doing a shit". Marina Diamond and Paloma Faith are great British eccentrics with fiery Mediterranean blood coursing through their veins. And there's always the one-man Twitter tornado that is Calvin Harris who, if he isn't having a tiff with Katy Perry, is providing thoughful analysis of the social and economic issues that affect us all.

So here is my plea to pop stars of the UK: Brush up your act. Stop being so earnest. Good behaviour is not expected. Show us your personality. Or invent a better one. Sacrifice a goat. Slap a fan in the face. Join Jedward, then kill Jedward. Overdose on Zoom lollies. Tattoo your face with a picture of Gary Barlow's face. Cover yourself in glue and roll around in macaroni.

And if all else fails, join Twitter and tell us about your plums.

Many thanks,

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