#2: Pink’s Motivations for the Album

Pink was born Alecia Beth Moore on September 8th, 1979. She was always the unique child. When she was in school, she joined her first band. She always dreamed of being a rock star. In the year of 1995, Alecia joined “Choice”, which was a R&B girl group, other members included Chrissy Conway and Sharon Flanagan. They were offered a contract by LaFace Records and then recorded an album. The album, however, was never released. After just three years, the group broke up.

In 2000, Pink recorded some singles that were more on the R&B side, which turned out to be extremely successful hit singles. In 2001, Pink wrote the album Missundaztood and switch towards more of pop rock songs. Just like I predicted, Pink created this album with the intention of proving that she wasn’t another one of those mainstream pop singers; as well as to disprove people about her image. Throughout the making of this album, she hired Linda Perry to help assist with some of the song writing.

The album was released on November 20th, 2001. Some events occurred that acted as very strong motivation for the songs written in this album. Throughout some songs, Moore included her parents and their struggles. When Alecia was still young, her parents divorced and in response, she wrote the song “Family Portrait”. She was a very rebellions and angry child because of that. As Alecia stated in the “Sunday Telegraph” in 2007, “I was never allowed to go over to any of my friends’ houses when I was little, because I was the bad influence”. At the very young age of 13, Alecia started to hang around and be apart of the club scene, often doing little performances. Unfortunately this resulted in involvement with extremely heavy partying, drugs, and alcohol. At the age of 15, she came close to over-dosing on crystal meth, angel dust, ecstasy, and marijuana. Of course, this is not something an average 15 year old would experience, thus resulting in songs like “Just Like a Pill”.

After doing some more research for this project and learning more about Alecia Beth Moore’s personal life and listening to the album some more, I think my appreciation for her increased by a lot. Listening to the songs more and actually understanding the lyrics (and the meaning behind them) contributed to me liking the album a lot more. So, I’d have to change my album rating and give it a 3.5 out of 5 rating!

 

Sources:

http://www.people.com/people/pink/0,,,00.html

http://www.lyricsfreak.com/p/pink/biography.html

The Best Democracy Money Can Buy: Bush Family Fortune

After watching “The Best Democracy Money Can Buy: Bush Family Fortunes”, I had many reactions and opinions. Although politics isn’t exactly my “cherry on top” and I don’t exactly care for it, I learned many things. As well as, I realized my great unawareness of politics; this is probably the reason for my shocking reactions at many times during this video.

I didn’t like the way the video had so much extra stuff in it which I didn’t need to see like the unnecessary car scene or the oil process (especially with the annoying squeaking sound in the background). Kind of puts a bad first impression to the video when I first starting watching it and made it pretty tedious. Just get to the point already.

However, I did enjoy many parts such as how the beginning of the video began with an interview with Clayton Roberts, Director of Elections and took a sudden left turn. He just abruptly ends the interview and walks away. After being asked if he basically bought the elections for the Republic party, he ironically refuses to answer and just avoids the question. This made me want to continue watching more and “drew” me in.

In the video when Greg Palast interviewed two of George Bush’s old college roommates, one of them stated “military was something we’d have to deal with”. I completely agree with that statement, you cannot avoid it. It made me think of all the previous times when I’ve heard people say how much they hated Bush because “he got us into the war in Iraq”. In my opinion, it would have happened at some point perhaps, no? So you can hate Bush for other specific reasons, but that is something that would have ended up happening anyways. This thought goes hand-in-hand with when the roommates also stated that he was pretty much made an “asshole” in scripted and edited versions of videos and interviews. According to the roommate, he is a fun and relaxed guy. I actually felt remorseful towards Bush at that moment. Thinking realistically, negative propaganda can exaggerate things and certain situations greatly. Not saying he didn’t make some bad decisions, but in my opinion he’s probably not THAT bad of a guy.

What REALLY shocked me in the video was the fact that George Bush’s military records were incomplete. But why? The first thought that came to my mind was to cover up any “screw-ups” he had done. Moments later, that is exactly what Bill Burkett said. According to Burkett, the reason was to “make sure nothing would embarrass Governor Bush”.

Another thing I found completely insane was how there were almost 200,000 votes in the election that were not counted. All those votes were from African-American people who were supposedly “criminals”, according to the D.B.T. Choice Point list of felons that was made, whose names were NEVER verified. That results in 95% inaccuracy, which affects the voting results GREATLY.

Overall, the video was a complete shock to me. Greg Palast is a great example of the fifth estate and provides facts about the great corruption in Government, which you can never trust. It’s all about money, you have money you get what you want (including power) and everything goes smoothly. Just like Greg Palast said “Money get’s them office, office makes them even more money. It’s called the Bush cycle”.

#1: Initial Impression to “Missundaztood” by Pink.

The album I chose to do for my Introduction to Mass Media Class Blog Project was Pink’s “Missundaztood”. The reason I chose to do this album was basically due to judging a book by it’s cover and thinking that choosing a more “modern” artist would be a lot easier to interpret. Judging the title and the album cover, I thought it would be a fun hip-hoppy/pop album, thus, being pretty interesting. I have never really listened to Pink (which is another reason why I chose the album), nor did I know who she was, other than the girl with pink hair.

My initial impression of the album before listening to it fully, was that this is another one of those typical and cliche girl band’s who sings about her struggles in life and her boyfriend troubles. I have heard a couple of songs by Pink on the radio and always switched the station, reason being was just because I always try and skip the mainstream pop music. However, after fully listening to the album, I actually enjoyed it. Something about this album just made me want to continue to listen; perhaps the various rock elements added in, her raspy yet beautiful voice, or the fun beats in the background? Another element I enjoyed of the album was the actual lyrics, she wasn’t singing about how rich she is, bragging about her life, etc…her lyrics were REAL and emotional experiences. Throughout some songs, I noticed she sings about her life struggles; which included her parents always fighting. I deeply connected to that because I have experienced some of those events when my parents divorced when I was at a very young age.

A theme that I noticed throughout the album was “My life was at a downfall, but now I’m going to get back up and prove you all wrong”. Although the mood seems almost pessimistic at times, listening to the lyrics carefully shows that Pink gives a big “eff you” to everyone, trying to prove that despite everything, she’ll get through it (perhaps where the album title comes from), and now she’s back. That is another thing I enjoyed about the album, there is this “bad ass” and rebellious vibe. Which of course, doesn’t put her in the category of one of those cliche pop/rock girls who sing about how drunk she got last night.

Although, I mostly enjoyed the album, I think it belongs at a lame party with fifteen year olds, who aren’t old enough to drink yet. If not at a lame party, I think this album belongs on 102.7, playing very softly while I wait to get my name called into the dentist’s office. Some of the slower songs which I didn’t really like just gave off a sad and depressing tone/mood. Overall, I would give the album a 3.5 out of 5.

Sources:

http://www.lyricsfreak.com/p/pink/biography.html

http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0600877/bio

http://www.people.com/people/pink/0,,,00.html

Huckleberry Finn Controversy

The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn was written by Mark Twain and published in the year of 1885. Today, it is one of America’s classics and best reads. However, it’s also one of the most banned books as well. Why? All because of an “offensive” word that was used 219 times, “nigger”.

The word “nigger” is thought to be offensive and hurtful. I believe that certainly, Mark Twain’s use of it was not meant to offend people, he was just using the vocabulary and language that was used at that period of time. People now-a-days accuse Mark Twain of being racist. If he was really racist, would he really depict Jim the way he depicted him? Jim might have been a runaway slave, but after all, he was not a bad guy in the story.

The “n word” was not such a big deal before, but now it is. Now, authors want to revise the book and replace every single “n word” with “slave”. That’s not a very good replacement, in my opinion, they both have negative connotations. Agreeing with what Steven Colbert said in his video, the word “slave” could also be found offensive. The words can offend people because it connects back to their history, but that is exactly what it is…history, events that happened in the PAST.

When the censorship reaches a whole new level, what other words will they find offensive? Are they going to revise EVERY single book ever written that contains “offensive” words? This goes hand-in-hand with the SOPA laws. They want to censor ALL piracy and activity on the internet that is thought of as “bad”. But people have different opinions, so everything could be thought of as “bad”. Same idea with the Huckleberry Finn controversy, different things could be offensive to people, so you might as well censor EVERYTHING in the book.

According to the dictionary’s definition, the fifth estate is any class or group in society other than the nobility, the clergy, the middle class. In other words, the fifth estate tells people how the situation really is, the truth. Without it, we wouldn’t really know what goes on in real life. Although it can be thought of as controversial in the way various situations are approached, The Daily Show and The Colbert Report are evidence of the fifth estate. When people hear a hit song by some rapper who says “nigger”over twenty times in one song, do they get offended? Usually nope, they just sing along. That just proves that it depends on the way the word is used or said plays a big role. An example is Larry Wilmore’s use of the word “nigger”. Jon Stewart and Larry Wilmore use the word in a humorous way, that does not automatically mean they are dehumanizing African-Americans. Steven Colbert also uses a humorous approach towards this controversial situation about the “n word”. Colbert and Stewart, both expose the truth about the situation and in a way make the situation “lighter” than what people make it to be.

That being said, I think Jon Stewart and Colbert cover the fifth estate very well. Although a humorous approach is used, they still provide very good points, which I greatly agree with. In my opinion, the original content should be kept as-is. If someone feels uncomfortable reading and talking about the “n word”, they could use the alternative “better” and “revised” version. It is history, you cannot change it. By censoring “nigger”, people are just putting more emphasis on the word. There are billions of people on this planet, everyone will ALWAYS have a different opinion. Therefore, every single person on this planet can not all be pleased. Someone will always find stuff wrong or offensive.

Sources:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nW9-qee1m9o

http://www.csmonitor.com/Books/Latest-News-Wires/2011/0105/Huck-Finn-Controversy-over-removing-the-N-word-from-Mark-Twain-novel

http://www.thedailyshow.com/watch/tue-january-11-2011/mark-twain-controversy

http://www.colbertnation.com/the-colbert-report-videos/369991/january-05-2011/huckleberry-finn-censorship

http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-503544_162-57360665-503544/sopa-pipa-what-you-need-to-know/

http://dictionary.com

“The Daily Mail” Radiohead Interpretation

For my first blog, I’m going to write about my interpretation and opinions about “The Daily Mail” by Radiohead. After listening to this song MANY times, I broke it down into parts every time. First listening to the song normally, then just the music itself, then with the lyrics, then the full song again. I was very confused at first, because without looking at the lyrics, at some points it is extremely hard to comprehend what Thom Yorke is singing because he is sort of mumbling.

 The song begins with a piano intro, which has a sort of calm and melancholy tone. The song sounds very relaxing, his vocals are very soft and quiet. After listening to the song a bit more, the piano gets louder and somewhat “darker”. Soon after, drums and guitar are introduced. The tone of the song automatically changes, it is somewhat dramatic. Is this done on purpose to put emphasis on the hidden meaning in the lyrics?

 After following the lyrics of the song to get a deeper understanding, my mind is somewhat changed. The mood of the song isn’t so calm after all, it has somewhat of a melancholy feeling to it. After already having previous knowledge that Thom Yorke is heavily active in attempting to make the public aware of certain political, cultural, and social issues, I know this song could not be a love song of any sort.

Thom Yorke begins the song saying “The lunatics have taken over the asylum, waiting on a rapture.” The first things that comes to mind…who could these “insane people” be? What could this asylum symbolize? And what kind of (rapture) joy could these people be waiting for? To understand the connection between the intro’s lyrics, I researched the definition of a rapture and the religious beliefs of Thom Yorke. In the dictionary, there were two meanings. One of which being “delight” and the other being “an experience anticipated by Christians of meeting Christ midway in the air upon his return to earth”. That made me make the connection that someone is standing on a mountain waiting to meet with God. However upon reading that Thom Yorke is not a Christian and supposedly believes in spirituality, those lyrics could not have been religious but had to SYMBOLIZE something, but I have yet to make the connection.

 “We’ll keep your prices down, we’ll feed you to the hounds”. Automatically, I got a sense that this set of lyrics is about the government, but in Thom Yorke’s eyes, it symbolizes an anti-government sort of feel. When “we’ll feed you to the hounds” is stated, I start to believe that maybe that symbolizes that the government will feed us to the hounds when the people have done something wrong. Still, very confused, I continue to analyze this song.

 Next, the song says “you made a pigs ear, you made a mistake”. At first I said, what does a pig’s ear have to do with any of this? Stupid, yes. But I researched and found that “a pig’s ear” symbolizes a mistake. But anyways, “paid off security and got through the gate. You got away with it but WE lie in wait”. I believe these words could symbolize someone maybe going through a metal detector, and getting away with something. Perhaps a weapon, gun, etc.? Yet, the government (“we”) keeps their mouth shut and lies to the public.

“Where’s the truth what’s the use
I’m hanging around lost and found
And when you’re here innocent
Fat chance, no plan
No regard for human life “

 I believe this set of lyrics symbolizes the public’s opinions towards the government on where the actual truth is and what is the use of lying. The people are “hanging around lost” and innocent, yet the government has “no regard for human life” and still continues to find anything negative in these mostly innocent people.

“You’ll keep time, you’ve no right
You’re fast to lose, you will lose
You jumped the queue, you’re back again”

 Once again, this set of lyrics has somewhat of an anti-public sort of feel (from the government’s perspective). “You’ve no right” perhaps could represents the government saying that the people in America have no right and that we will eventually lose. Thom Yorke finishes off the song by summarizing his ideas and station We’ll “jump the queue”, meaning we will figure out something to solve this corruption in government but we will eventually return to where we started.

After fully analyzing the song and its lyrics, I will go back to the introduction. After analyzing this song and stating my opinions, I will go back to the very beginning of the song and say that perhaps the moon on top of the mountain represents the government who is supposedly “on top” of everyone. In addition, the lunatics waiting for a rapture could represent the people (us) waiting for a happy ending or, “rapture”. Now for the music itself and it’s melancholy mood, maybe that could symbolize Thom Yorke’s and the people’s end of hope.