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View Full Version : "She must be talanted. She's popular, right?"


tdn
08-11-2005, 04:32 PM
Most of us have heard this before. Some gum-snapping airhead expresses how great Britney Agulara and the Back Street Spices are, and you scoff. "They suck ass", you say. And the airhead replies "They can't suck. They're popular! If they're popular, they must be good!"

How do you reply to that? The best response I've heard is that popular doesn't equte to good. And it ain't much of a response. What's a better comeback?

ultrafilter
08-11-2005, 04:33 PM
If becoming popular required no talent at all, would Jessica Simpson be second tier to Christina and Britney?

Sage Rat
08-11-2005, 04:34 PM
Coool, the McDonalds of music!

twickster
08-11-2005, 04:35 PM
Actually, I've never had a conversation such as you describe in the OP.

Perhaps you need to seek out a better caliber of friends? ;)

pinkfreud
08-11-2005, 04:36 PM
Well, there is a certain amount of talent involved in shaking your ass. Most of today's chart-topping bimbos and himbos seem to be good at that. Doesn't mean they can sing worth a hoot, but I don't doubt that many sows' ears have been recrafted into silk purses with electronic manipulation of voices.

Lord Ashtar
08-11-2005, 04:37 PM
My mom's husband said the same thing, literally. "Britney Spears sold a lot of albums. Therefore, she's immensely talented."

That just about made my metalhead brain implode.

dare_devil007_
08-11-2005, 04:41 PM
"If popular equates talent, it's no wonder you're not famous..."

Future days
08-11-2005, 04:46 PM
If becoming popular required no talent at all, would Jessica Simpson be second tier to Christina and Britney?

What talent does Britney have, pray tell? Absolutely zero as far as I can tell. Her voice is so computer-affected it makes me want to throw up.

ultrafilter
08-11-2005, 04:49 PM
What talent does Britney have, pray tell? Absolutely zero as far as I can tell. Her voice is so computer-affected it makes me want to throw up.

So why do you think that her albums consistently outsell those of Jessica Simpson?

tdn
08-11-2005, 04:52 PM
So why do you think that her albums consistently outsell those of Jessica Simpson?
Marketing?

AveDementia
08-11-2005, 04:52 PM
What's a better comeback?

Ever heard of "payola"? (http://www.internetdj.com/article.php?storyid=653)

Lord Ashtar
08-11-2005, 04:53 PM
So why do you think that her albums consistently outsell those of Jessica Simpson?
She's sluttier.

tdn
08-11-2005, 04:54 PM
Coool, the McDonalds of music!
That's a good one.

I also might point out that Shawn Cassidy is no longer popular. Did his talent wane at the exact rate that his popularity did? How does that happen? Or that pop stars must have short-lived talent, equal to that of their short-lived careers.

Maeglin
08-11-2005, 04:54 PM
Their popularity is not proof that they have talent, but that there is no God.

DVsickgirlDV
08-11-2005, 04:54 PM
So why do you think that her albums consistently outsell those of Jessica Simpson?

Not because of talent, but because she knows how to market herself and she knows how to do things to stay in the spotlight that are have nothing to do with talent, such as marry her little friend from LA for 24 hours. When Britney was at her prime, you couldn't avoid her. She was all over magazines, commercials, etc. Finally Jessica Simpson is learning how to market herself, such as her reality show, and I wouldn't be surprised if her albums will sell much more than Britney's in the near future.

Hey, It's That Guy!
08-11-2005, 04:55 PM
So why do you think that her albums consistently outsell those of Jessica Simpson?

Better marketing. Britney has something like four albums and a greatest hits compilation, and each one released several radio singles and music videos. She has been around since 1998 or so, so she's had several years to become popular.

Jessica started out singing Christian contemporary music, if I'm not mistaken, and transitioned to pop around the same time Britney and Christina Aguilera were becoming huge. Jessica had a few singles (including a horrible song that sampled the music from John Mellencamp's "Jack and Diane"), but was never as big as the other two -- she and Mandy Moore always seemed to be distant third and fourth. Jessica also wasn't as openly sexy as Britney or Christina, and her videos were more demure and less provocative. That all changed when she became the reality show darling, sexed up her public image and played the part of the "dumb blonde," and was all over the media all of a sudden. But that phenomenon is only a couple years old, long after Britney was a household name.

Future days
08-11-2005, 04:56 PM
So why do you think that her albums consistently outsell those of Jessica Simpson?


She's had an ace marketing team behind her since day one. In pop, marketing is everything.

WordMan
08-11-2005, 04:59 PM
Yes - there good at doing the things that lead to sales; that doesn't translate to musical quality

McDonald's does things that lead to sales - e.g., marketing, consistent operations in every store, highly replicatable foods - but that doesn't translate in to cuisine quality.


"Built for broad consumption" rarely equates with "quality art"

HPL
08-11-2005, 05:05 PM
Most of us have heard this before. Some gum-snapping airhead expresses how great Britney Agulara and the Back Street Spices are, and you scoff. "They suck ass", you say. And the airhead replies "They can't suck. They're popular! If they're popular, they must be good!"

How do you reply to that? The best response I've heard is that popular doesn't equte to good. And it ain't much of a response. What's a better comeback?

"Only among the shallow. Everyone else looks for actual talent"

ultrafilter
08-11-2005, 05:06 PM
Not because of talent, but because she knows how to market herself and she knows how to do things to stay in the spotlight that are have nothing to do with talent, such as marry her little friend from LA for 24 hours.

Isn't knowing how to do things the definition of talent? I'm not saying that Britney has musical talent, but she must have *something* going for her if she's consistently the top seller.

tdn
08-11-2005, 05:08 PM
Isn't knowing how to do things the definition of talent? I'm not saying that Britney has musical talent, but she must have *something* going for her if she's consistently the top seller.
Sure. But it ain't musical talent.

F. U. Shakespeare
08-11-2005, 05:08 PM
I don't have a problem with people deciding that they will listen to whatever's popular -- I can't understand that mentality, but it's none of my business.

What baffles me are people who don't realize how much payola, advertising, etc. influence which music they get to hear -- it ain't just merit, people.

I remember a long time ago (I was still in school) when a very popular artist released a record which I thought sucked. A classmate disagreed, asking me, "If it's so bad, why is it getting so much airplay?"

As someone on these boards put it, sometimes, ignorance fights back.

Future days
08-11-2005, 05:09 PM
Isn't knowing how to do things the definition of talent? I'm not saying that Britney has musical talent, but she must have *something* going for her if she's consistently the top seller.


She doesnt "know how to do things", her marketing team does. You seem to underestimate the people behind the scenes quite substantially.

Sternvogel
08-11-2005, 05:15 PM
The best response I've heard is that popular doesn't equte to good. And it ain't much of a response. What's a better comeback?

"Nobody ever went broke underestimating the taste of the American public." -- H. L. Mencken, who's quotable in many situations (http://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/H._L._Mencken)

NDP
08-11-2005, 05:26 PM
I don't have a problem with people deciding that they will listen to whatever's popular -- I can't understand that mentality, but it's none of my business.
Just my theory, but I think it's because some people want to feel like they're part of something big. They're afraid to do anything that might isolate them from their peers.

RealityChuck
08-11-2005, 08:14 PM
Like it or not, Britney Spears is popular because people like her music. Simple as that.

There are a lot of reasons for that, but primarily, the record-buying audience is young and likes simple, catchy pop tunes, which she puts out in abundance.

The fact that she is an attractive woman and an interesting dancer doesn't hurt either.

But if Spears announced tomorrow she was going to perform nothing but Gregorian Chant, he popularity would vanish overnight.

Sweetums
08-11-2005, 08:29 PM
Like it or not, Britney Spears is popular because people like her music. Simple as that.

There are a lot of reasons for that, but primarily, the record-buying audience is young and likes simple, catchy pop tunes, which she puts out in abundance.

The fact that she is an attractive woman and an interesting dancer doesn't hurt either.

But if Spears announced tomorrow she was going to perform nothing but Gregorian Chant, he popularity would vanish overnight.


What if she married a himbo dancer, stopped making music, got pregnant and just basicly let herself go, and turned into white trash?

Sorry, the above illustrates that she is indeed the result of a publicity machine and not musical talent. Despite the train wreck that Brittany has become, and the fact that she no longer makes anything resembling music she is still grabbing tabloid headlines.

Guinastasia
08-11-2005, 09:23 PM
She doesnt "know how to do things", her marketing team does. You seem to underestimate the people behind the scenes quite substantially.

Hell, this is Britney Spears we're talking about. Anyone catch Chaotic? I think we're giving her way too much credit.

Ellis Dee
08-12-2005, 12:38 AM
Yeah, the McDonald's quip is the best comeback. Budweiser works as well. They are my go-to examples in the football vs soccer debate to refute the notion that soccer's global popularity makes it a better game.If becoming popular required no talent at all, would Jessica Simpson be second tier to Christina and Britney?I must be out of it, because I don't understand this sentence. Are you saying that Jessica has more talent than Christina? Britney has very little, but the other two can at least sing. I'd say Christina has the most actual talent. Or are you saying that Jessica is the hottest? (I'd wholeheartedly agree with that.)So why do you think that [Britney's] albums consistently outsell those of Jessica Simpson?Joe Simpson nailed this one. As Jessica was working on her first album, he was aware that both Britney and Christina were out there gearing up for careers as well. In his estimation, whomever got their first album out first would "win." He was exactly right.

Ellis Dee
08-12-2005, 12:43 AM
Hell, this is Britney Spears we're talking about. Anyone catch Chaotic? I think we're giving her way too much credit.Newlyweds was a very endearing show, in that both Nick and Jessica practically screamed vulnerability. They also appear to be genuine and likable people. I managed to sit through about half of one episode of Chaotic before tuning out permanently. It is a sad, pathetic home movie promotional tool that was poorly conceived and even more poorly executed.

Supposedly, Britney also tried out for the role of Daisy Duke. If true, I am not surprised that it went to Jessica. Britney's popularity peaked a couple years ago, and she has been on the decline ever since.