Why I think RCA executive are fuckwits

My first rant, so be objective.

In response to this article :

I am so pissed I can’t see straight. Fuck you “anonymous” RCA executive. “Americans have no taste.” Well, fuck you and the horse you rode in on. I grew up on Motown, Aretha, James Brown, Al Green, Donny Hathaway, Gladys Knight, the Temptations, The O’Jays, Sam Cooke, Nat King Cole, the Supremes, the Jackson 5, Aaron Neville, Ben E. King, Betty Everett. And you know what? Every fuckin’ one of them could SING. You know what else? LOTS OF FUCKING AMERICANS LOVED THEM. As I got older, I listened to Elvis, Barry Manilow, the Beatles, the Stones, Bruce Springsteen, Michael Jackson, Wham!, Taylor Dayne, Hall and Oates, Linda Ronstadt, the Eagles, Chicago, Randy Travis, Dolly Parton, Bob Seger, Prince; hell, I even listened to Paula Abdul and Milli Vanilli and the BeeGees and bought their goddamned albums. You know why? ‘Cause I like goddamn pop music, along with huge fuckin’ numbers of Americans, Canadians, Britishers and every fuckin’ body else around the world. And they could SING (or someone pretending to be them could sing). I listen to Whitney and Celine and Mariah. And I don’t believe I’m alone. What? I don’t want to buy your surefire hitmaker’s latest release, “Asshole Plugs”? And it’s target demographic just downloads what they want. Well, boo fuckin’ hoo to you.

Vanilla? What, is vanilla supposed to be the absense of taste? You stupid son of a bitch, every flavor out there is based on or enhanced by vanilla. You leave it out and see what you get. I know and buy what I like. If RCA feels “they cannot afford to be judgmental”, I can. Since RCA is trying to sell pop music, I would advise their executives to drop the elitist attitudes. Or maybe not. It’s nice to know what people realy think, and I can and will follow my favorite artist to a different label if necessary. So they “resent having their passion marginalized by anyone with a telephone and a taste for Bee Gees medleys”? Well, I resent talentless hacks who got in the business side of music because they couldn’t cut it as artists marginalizing my passion. You, Mr. Asshat Executive, sell shit. Unhappily for you, if you don’t sell shit I want, or what America wants, you get fucking fired. Welcome to the land of tastelessness.

A friend of mine commented that “the response of the record industry to Clay’s success reminds me of the reaction of the Detroit car companies when Japanese cars began outselling them. They just couldn’t take it seriously, because after all they were Detroit, they knew what American car owners wanted. And for years they just tinkered with the fins and cupholders while Honda and Toyota gave buyers gas mileage and reliability and design. It’s the same blindness and same patronizing attitude. I’ll wager it leads to a similar result.” An industry that is so fucked up it is to the point of suing they’re own goddamn customer base can’t tell me shit. I like Clay Aiken. I bought his single, I tend to buy magazines that have articles about him, I will buy his CD. I have download his songs. And will still buy his CD. Knows lots of other people planning to buy his CD. They have also downloaded his songs. But I guess middle-aged women’s can’t really learn how to access WinMX, and obviously our money isn’t good enough for you.

And I do have Kazaa and WinMX. And you know why? Because I don’t particularly want to buy an album recommended by some fat-assed RCA executive who doesn’t know jackshit about taste. The last album I walked into a store and bought? Alicia Keyes. You know why? ‘Cause the girl can fuckin’ sing. You know where I bought it? Wal-Mart. You know why? Because it was cheaper than Sound Wherehouse. Now that’s a goddamn American reason for buying shit at Wal-Mart. Because it’s fucking cheaper. I looked at RCA’s roster. Besides Clay and Elvis, there is no one there I would buy. NO ONE. I might listen to Christina or Kelly or the Dave Matthews Band, and THAT’S IT. I like some hip-hop. I liked it back in the 70’s and 80’s. It took 15 YEARS for the fuckin’ industry to take it seriously. So, Mr. Stupid Executive, I’ll be here laughing at you as you and your fucking industry goes down the toilet. Jackass.

Oddly enough, I liked what the article said about Clay. I just that holier-than-thou attitude of the music industry, that if women like it, it’s not any good. Feh!

I like it.

Got a good beat you can dance to.
And catchy lyrics.

just dropped by to say hi
little ol vanilla

You guys slay me!

NoClueBoy, you’re older than you look!

As you can tell, I like vanilla!

You mean American Bandstand isn’t on the air anymore?
Ya know, if it wasn’t for Pop, um…, well… The reason they call it Pop is it’s popular.

Good rant. I like Country, Blues, Classical, Punk, Jazz, and a few other things… including Pop.

Hee hee, it’s funny 'cause it’s not true.

I can’t believe how many people in the USA aren’t aware that there is an “Australian Idol”, and a “South African Idol”, and even a “Brazilian Idol” - and that further, the program is just another example of mass production TV advertising fodder.

All up? A weak rant, in my opinion. Reality TV is just another fashion. And fashions come and go - just like Clay Aiken - because at the end of the day - he’s just another singer who can’t write songs - and he’s ultimately merely a pawn in the great game which is “smash and grab music”.

He’s no Sinatra that’s for sure. Now THERE was a man who didn’t write his own tunes but his style was so compelling that songwriters chased him to do their songs. The world is full of non-offensive Clay Aikens - or in other words - Pat Boones.

Another thing? The Rolling Stone cover with Clay Aiken? Just as a bit of trivia - that was one Rolling Stone cover which didn’t get printed anywhere outside of the USA. And the reason? In the abscence of TV, he’s a Neville Nobody.

He’s right, Americans have no taste. The vast majority of music consumers buy whatever is shoved down their throats this week. They’ll buy this Clay Aiken record cause he’s on TV all the time, not cause he’s doing anything original or creative.

A nitpick…

You’ve got that bit in quotes and it seems to imply that a record exec actually said it. In fact, it was a ‘what if’ posed by the author of the article.

Oh, one other thing… finally Clay says:

Yes, it’s true they wouldn’t have picked you. Because nothing about you sets you apart from the countless others who can kind of sing and can’t write (as Boo Boo Foo says).

America didn’t show them they don’t know what they’re talking about. Idol-voting America in fact showed them exactly where they could make a quick buck off a wanna-be star.

The guy’s right. From billboard.com*

*edited out all the label/peak/last week info

I can’t believe a lot of things people in the USA aren’t aware of; oddly enough, lots of the ones I know are aware of the other Idols; frankly, anyone who watched American Idol because they referenced the others, especially Pop Idol. I understand that it is an easy dig to sneer at “mass produced pop culture”, but I’d hazard a guess it is more difficult to produce than a lot of people give credit. “Just another singer who can’t write songs”? I have to admit, why is that such a big deal? Aren’t there a lot of songwriters who can’t sing? Are classical singers bitched at because they haven’t composed an aria? And frankly, a lot of what’s being written is tripe. Considering the boy has only been in the public eye for 5 months, I personally would give him a few years before I begin to compare him to Sinatra. Re: the RS cover - how many covers don’t get printed outside the US?

On the Americans have no taste: I still object to this. From what I read on this board alone, Americans have seriously diverse tastes. Hell, no one in my immediate family likes the same stuff. It might not be yours. Honestly, if someone can find the underlying pathos in “Itsy Bitsy Spider” and you can’t, doesn’t make you better. Neither you nor the article’s writer knows what CDs, albums or cassettes I or anyone not in your immediate circle has. You don’t know what live venues are attending by whom. You don’t know what everyone’s downloading. You know what’s being advertised and you know that the record industry is losing money. There are thousands of bands, musicians and singers in this country. Somebody’s listening to them. Americans have taste. They just might not like your, and for all I know, you may feel that your latest composition on the fugelhorn is the pinnacle of musical genius.

I apologize if I seem to indicate that I thought this was a quote from an executive; my stream of consiciousness style of ranting sometimes works against clarity. I was aware that it was the author of the article responsible for that delightfully condescending tripe; I still don’t like it.

Something sets him aside. You’re right, there are countless others who kind of sing (and I don’t put him in that category) and can’t write, and any permutation of that you like. I’ve listened to them on the radio and on downloads, and I and many others are completely indifferent to them. I’m and a number of others are not indifferent to Clay’s voice and his interpretion of some songwriter’s creativity. I have no idea how well Holland, Dozier and Holland sang. But I liked the way the Supremes delivered them. And if I were to learn that Chingy wrote and produced “Right Thurr” rather than just “kind of sing” it, I still wouldn’t buy it. I don’t know about you, but I’d rather listen to a good singer who can’t write, than a good writer who can’t sing. I buy music to listen to it, strange, huh? And a lot of the stuff I have liked over the years “a good beat you can dance to.
And catchy lyrics.” Thank you NoClueBoy. Still listening to it, still dancing to it, still enjoy it.

But you’re overlooking something Kandre. It doesn’t matter what you like. It doesn’t matter what you don’t like.

This thread is about your Opening Post - and the article it was linked to.

As a wise teacher said to me in high school - “There will always be a market for crap music”. And he’s spot on with that. But also, there will always be a market for manipulative exposure too. And nowadays, there’s an special kind of cycnicsm set aside for people who really go out of their way to let us all know how much they dig that latter sort of music - which Clay Aiken certainly falls into.

The strength of you position KAndre would indicate that at least a part of you recognises that you might have bought into this syndrome. And that some of that cynicism might be aimed your way. Certainly, it would explain the overwhelming “defensive tone” I’m reading. You’ve really gone out of your way to try and affirm why your position is a worthy one. It’s obviously profoundly important to you.

Well, I gotta say, your position is probably more important to yourself than anyone else - and sharing it with us, by extension, leaves itself open to critical appraisal.

Maybe I’m missing something here, but I thought my OP was about “what I like” and how an commercial entity is offending some of its customer base, namely me. Taste in music, like any other art form, is subjective; I let them know what I like. It happens to include Clay Aiken. If they don’t sell what I like, they don’t get my money. The music industry is in business to make money.

“There will always be a market for crap music” doesn’t strike me as particularly wise or even meaningful; there’s a market for anything. Your post isn’t making a lot of sense to me; correct me if I wrong, but my impression is that you think I like crappy music, that I’ve been manipulated to like this crappy music because of “exposure”, am aware of this, and so feel the need to “defend” my position as “worthy” despite this manipulation? Considering that I have access to a wide variety of mass media, including radio, television and the internet, much of which is dedicated to “manipulative exposure” (including, hmm, “peer” pressure by pseudo elitist arbiters of crap/taste) designed to persuade me support whatever they are pushing. Perhaps I’m delusional but since I don’t own 99.5% of whatever is being currently advertised in the aforementioned mass media, I feel I have managed to resist it. I also read and listen to what arbiters recommend, and resist that too. I get what I like. Period. Being that I live in a capitalistic society, someone will sell it to me. Being that is is a fairly competitive capitalistic society and monopolies are illegal, if I don’t like how the seller is relating to me, I can either go elsewhere to buy or give the seller an opportunity to modify their attitude in public. I don’t give a flying fuck what their personal opinions are. I don’t expect a successful restaurant owner to tell his clientele that they are tasteless for patronizing his business.

And there’s a general kind of cynicism that’s been around for a long time about people who go out of their way to let us all know how much they disdain that kind of music with “mass appeal” - which you appear to fall into.

Whatever - your position still lacks any great significance.

Your pontification on what a capitalist society will or won’t allow is irrelevant - and here’s why. There’s no way that you could argue that RCA Records have conspired to prevent you from obtaining Clay Aiken’s music. Far from it. It’s as ubiquitous as smog. Those guys will sell you whatever you want to buy - assuming there’s money in it for them - so your last post was all moot actually.

The bottom line is that you feel a need to defend Clay Aiken. In particular, your decision to like his music. The Time Magazine article merely presented a commentary on a given phenomona - that is, when TV raises exposure on a music artist before that music artist had produced great music.

Ultimately, your OP is all about ranting against elitism in the music industry. And the Time Magazine article related specifically to that elitism - especially within the halls of RCA Records. But it was a fair article - it presented both sides.

Would that it were that you yourself KAndre would exhibit such fairness. Your rant in your OP is the classic “anti-rant rant” - insofar as people in the music biz who are elitists have been slagging off poor little Clay, and you feel the need to rant against those people - hence this thread.

My point here is that your OP is all about ranting about people who rant about Clay Aiken.

The fairness I’m asking here is that you concede that it’s perfectly our right (we your fellow Dopers) to note that such a phenomonon is inherently humourous.

Record executives don’t really listen to music. They just read reports and try to identify and predict trends.

Same with film studio executives.

That’s why we are subjected to so much garbage.

Isn’t it odd that so many great films and great music that found enthusiastic audiences were passed over time and again by execs? Execs wouldn’t know quality if it bit 'em on the ass.

Maybe Clay can make great music. But given that he’s not really a writer, and hasn’t paid his dues by playing the small clubs and building a following, I have serious doubts.

Perfect title for the sequel to the Woody Harrelson/Wesley Snipes movie. This time - starring Roseanne Barr.

They’ll stay away by the millions, I tell you.**

You betcha.

I didn’t even notice when I posted earlier but Drudge has linked to a BBC article that points out that the entire top ten is make of black artists :cool:

Boo Boo Foo,

I don’t have a problem with fellow Dopers noticing or commenting on the inherent humor in my rant (Hi NoClueBoy! Hi vanilla! Hi Jackmannii!) or nodding their collective heads at me or tsk-tsking at me. I really didn’t expect a sanctimonious fellow Doper to look for a significant position in it. You work some humor in or point it out to me, I’ll acknowledge it. You sneer, I sneer back. Seems fair to me. Beside that little comment, do you have a point? It’s a rant, you know, that form of extravagant emotional rambling that allows you vent negative emotions in a harmless manner. I don’t recall saying or even implying that I even wanted to “argue that RCA Records have conspired to prevent you from obtaining Clay Aiken’s music” Clay Aiken is a singer who has only become available commercially in the last five months. RCA sells his product. I don’t have to fight the powers that be at RCA to get them to sell it; they signed him up without any input from me. If you want my take on the “point” of my rant, it would be: don’t diss your customers.

Bruce_Daddy, considering the popularity of rap/hip-hop and the significance of airplay in the Billboard rankings, I’m just surprised this is the first time. Hey! There is a market for crap! Dang, that little grasshopper BBF was right!

KAndre, I think the thing that Boo Boo Foo and others (myself included, I guess) are saying is that just because you and other people you know like Clay and think he’s ‘good’ (whatever good means), doesn’t mean that he is and the record company guys are wrong.

Which doesn’t mean you have bad taste, it just means that as far as Clay goes, he has limited appeal, and there’s nothing that sets him apart from countless other wanna-bes except that he got TV fame from Idol.

And, I suspect, that despite his broad appeal, he won’t come close to current chart-toppers, though I admit that remains to be seen.

But, when you say “don’t diss your customers,” the fact of the matter is, if they don’t expect Clay to sell millions of albums, then you, as the target market for his album, are in many ways statistically insignificant, and don’t really matter to the record company.