Saturday, February 5, 2011

The United States according to Ke$ha

Any time I'm driving, I am compelled to listen to music. Talk radio doesn't appeal to me (Rush Limbaugh is enough to scare anyone from that) and complete silence is a little unnerving. Recently, I have become more annoyed with what passes for music on the radio.

The one 'artist' that has me puzzled is Ke$ha (in case you're wondering, the dollar sign is part of her stage name). I don't even know if she can actually sing, thanks to the advent of auto tuner. However I do understand the lyrics of her song. Ke$ha sings about partying, drinking heavily and of course, sex.

When hearing her songs on the radio, I cringe and reach for the dial. But my disdain for Ke$ha has softened somewhat. After hearing several of her songs, I started thinking that maybe her music wasn't just rambling. The music is actually a critique of American society, particularly her latest single. Ke$ha is providing social commentary on the United States and if what she puts out there is any indicator, then America needs some work.

Ke$ha's most current single is titled 'We R who we R.' The song trends toward trying to convince people to accept Ke$ha for what she is. No, you can't change her or this generation for that matter. Hey, I text too but there's nothing wrong with actually spelling out the word 'are.' Then again we do enjoy taking shortcuts.

The song's lyrics (in part):

Hot and dangerous
If you're one of us, then roll with us ...
And yes of course we does we're running this town just like a club
And no, you don't wanna mess with us

Tonight we're going hard, hard,
Just like the world is ours, ours,
We're tearin' it apart,
You know we're superstars
We are who we are!

This is America now. So full of ourselves believing we are superior to everyone and have the concept of 'I run this s--- .' Is this how our society wants to be seen? Are we so attention starved? I believe we are. We marvel at celebrities who personify this image of a domineering, self-worshiping attitude. And why?

What's wrong with showing a humble nature? I believe this stems from society's growing sense of insecurity. We feel so insecure that folks put up a front that looks tough because they're afraid for anyone to see them as weak. This leads to the those acting out with the mindset of 'I'm a badass.' We also have mistaken being weak and being humble as the same.

It's about d--- time to live it up
I'm so sick of being so serious
It's making my brain delirious!

Time to live it up? That seems to be what American society does quite well. And Ke$ha is right in noting we are sick of being serious. Citizens have a better understanding of the group dynamic on Jersey Shore than the crisis in Egypt. Like an ostrich, we would rather stick our heads in the sand than deal with serious matters in the world.

Ke$ha also touches on the sweeping trend of instant gratification in our society. In her aptly titled song, 'Blah Blah Blah,' Ke$ha croons over men spouting out all their various lines and sayings, but really would rather they shut up and have sex with her. Let's just go for it.

Coming out your mouth with your blah blah blah
Zip your lips like a padlock
And meet me in the back with the jack and the jukebox
I don't really care where you live at
Just turn around boy and let me hit that
Don't be a little b---- with your chit chat

So cut to the chase kid
'Cause I know you don't care what my middle name is
I wanna be naked
And you're wasted

Isn't this the attitude that has become pervasive in our country? And it isn't simply dealing with our cavalier attitude about sex. Rarely does anyone think about consequences to their actions. We live in the moment, right?

Tell that to those who took on mortgages they couldn't afford. Or what about the financial sector of the country in general? Gratify our desires right now without asking any questions about danger in the long run.

How many times have we said what was on our minds because we can, and ignored whether or not if our words could be hurtful to others?

Some of the other titles produced by Ke$ha include: "Sleazy," "Blow," "Hungover" and "Take it Off."

So the next time you hear Ke$ha on the radio, don't completely dismiss her. She's just "tellin' you about s--- we do." I guess we r who we r.

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