Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Children Were The Future, Now They're Pop Stars

Those were the days when Grandmaster Flash found out that all blacks couldn’t be jazz musicians or basketball players and decided to have fun by making it cool to wear your pants around your thighs and having funny dog names for yourself. Those were the days when there was no such thing as a makeover and Marilyn Manson didn’t really have another option. Those were the days when Britney Spears hit puberty forcing many men into pedophilia. Those were the days when Lincoln Park was just a tourist spot and a green day was good for the planet. Those were the days when the worst you had to listen to was Avril Lavigne’s cover of Fuel.

Michael Jackson still had his nose
And could legally like children, I suppose
He lay still, the Lizard King
And Sting continued to be Sting
As time went on he’d age into Stung
Death metal was still kinda young
People would still die of overdoses
Slash was still playing with Guns n Roses
Check! Huh!

Those days are gone. They’re dead. Just like your grandmother. Or your great grandmother. Or Arjun Singh if you’re offended. They’ve been replaced by these dark dark days…

That ominous raven appears in the sky
“Nevermore!” it goes and perches nearby
It looks and scoffs
And soon flies off
Only to be replaced by a fruit fly

…alright fine, these days aren’t as bad as I’m playing them out to be but they’re still pretty bad.

Earlier, songs that glorified sex, violence and drugs used to be a bother for parents of teenagers but now songs like Friday (which unfortunately happens to be better known than this Friday) are a bother for that set of parents because they glorify bad pop music. They are also a bother for parents of toddlers and expecting couples because they advertise things like:

  • Underage reckless driving just because it’s fun. And also fun, fun and fun.
  • Bunking school on Fridays when instead of the school bus one of your thirteen year old friends showed up in a convertible Merc
  • Lying to everyone about having breakfast when you actually didn’t have any
  • Dangerous behavior such as straightening your hair on the stairs as you head downstairs in the morning to have your bowl (bowel?) and your cereal
  • Not being embarrassed about your poor vocabulary when appearing in public. Pop music was never the spelling bee anyway.
  • Making up for the poor vocabulary with an extremely detailed knowledge of the days of the week
  • Trying to be funny by having some other black dude rapping for you despite being Black yourself
  • Providing people like him (refer to figure below) a livelihood from YouTube with a fancy trickledown effect

Nor a dip in form nor the lack of Shane Bond
Black caps on top of shirtless men,
Are the real reason behind the awful cricket
Being played by New Zealand

Also, as a child star Rebecca Black replaces Justin Bieber who replaced Hannah Montana who replaced the Jonas Brothers all of whom seem to be doing fine. Child musicians seem to have it going well when you compare them to child stars in other segments of entertainment like TV where Gary Coleman’s dead (I shall resist the pun on strokes. I shall resist the pun on strokes. I shall resist…) and Macaulay Culkin who, like most unwatched children, took to drugs. Even in sports where Messi seems to be doing well and Wayne Rooney got a new contract after he was caught cheating on his wife, we have kids like Fernando Torres who traded his footballing shoes to become a Barbie doll and Gareth Bale who has to play for Wales.

Chicharito won't go to Manchester City
Or play for any team with a blue jersey
He's a Mexican in London and won't get a wife
And will therefore succeed in life

So why the sudden surge in the number of child musicians? I think it’s something to do with the American economic scenario. With all the smart jobs in Bangalore, all the labour jobs in Shanghai and Steve Jobs on his death bed, the children in that country can no longer depend on their parents to provide for them and are taking things into their own tiny hands. But the tiny tots didn’t really know how because they realized that they were no good at research or management or law or even HR and the world didn’t really require more than one good social network and one good search engine. In their hearts they knew that sooner or later someone was going to come up with a good idea and so they waited. They waited.

I’m tired of my teachers and my school's a drag
I’m not going to end up like my mom and dad
I need to earn but I don’t like to serve your order
When I grow up, I don’t want to fight on others’ borders
I don’t like to baby sit or scrub the floors
Hands off, asshole, that doesn’t mean I’m a whore
So come on let me entertain you
Let me entertain you
(Some lyrics borrowed from Robbie Williams’ Let Me Entertain You. Others mine.)

Now the guys in the US are either very smart or very lucky Now the guys in the US are very lucky because they’re doing everything they can to encourage the budding child artists in their country. It holds the potential to generate income from a hitherto unexplored resource and also promises to give mothers a little more time with themselves, other mothers and maybe even their husbands. Here's hoping that other governments the world over recognize the promise in this industry too and dumb down the education system and fix the whole age of consent issue so that these upcoming artists can shoot their own sex clips for only then will they become true pop stars.

Addition on 4th April, 2010:
Pretty Little Ditty by RHCP was released in 1989 and as a Youtube comment says - "10 seconds of this song represent the entire crazy town career." which lasted a couple of months around November 2000.


  1. Brilliantly written dude ! If this is the future of music, I'd rather go deaf.
    *sigh* Kids these days look up to these "musicians" as heroes.

  2. Excuse me, who are you, and what's your article about ?

  3. Yeah, Hands Up. I'd much rather be 40 years old just so as to grow up in the '70s.

    Anonymous, this is about the falling standards of music and child artistes.

  4. surely she can be raped better than this?

  5. The point, Midhun, isn't to rape her but mourn the falling standards of music generally.