Showing posts with label beyonce. Show all posts
Showing posts with label beyonce. Show all posts

Saturday, April 6, 2024

Oh, The Controversy

Granted, Beyonce's rendition of Jolene is awful, but people seem to forget that Dolly Parton's original is no gem, either. I hated the track when it was released in 1973; thus, it was played constantly on radio. All the worst ones are. Don't get me wrong; the original lyrics are fine, but that melody! Not only banal, but depressing. (Don't tell me, well, it's a depressing message. A good song isn't just lyrics. That would be a poem.) Dolly is a decent enough songwriter, but melody is not her strong suit (see: Coat of Many Colors; To Daddy)

I've seen a lot of commentary this week about Beyonce's version. She took the only adequate component of the song, the lyrics, and changed them completely! And need I say that those changes reek? A commentator I admire said it best. "Now the song doesn't mean anything." I agree that it presents no message other than, "I'm gonna whup your ass". Okie-dokie. And really, no one can convey that message quite like Toby Keith. It's not even a contest.

I suppose what annoys me about the commentary, though it really shouldn't, is that these people are suddenly country music experts. I don't doubt that they've heard the original version of Jolene. It's probably the only country song they've ever heard, yet each of them is quick to pronounce their "fondness" for country music. "I like Brad Paisley," said one. I'm surprised no one said, "I shore could use me some of that Hank Williams." It's okay, guys; everyone is not required to like it. 

I freely admit that I'm not a fan of current R&B, or whatever it is that Beyonce does. I'm also not a fan of her voice. It seems to me that she used to at least stretch her vocal cords a bit, but on this album she's singing in a dreary alto.

And why is there any debate over whether Cowboy Carter is a country album? The answer is: It is not a country album. Plain and simple. It's not. There can't possibly be any argument over that. And by the way, why is it so important for her fans to try to label it one? Big George Strait fans or something? Honestly.

What's almost worse are the songwriters/original artists who've praised her cover versions. Sincerity seems lost nowadays. Dolly and Paul McCartney certainly have good musical taste. They can't possibly think these lifeless dirges are "awesome". Was she really tired when she recorded them?

I suppose, like Taylor Swift, Beyonce is a pop culture star; mediocre but with a ton of flash. Flash is what matters. Beyonce's new album has zero impact on my life, so people can call it whatever makes them happy.