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Music Is My King Size Bed

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Saturday, June 25, 2011

Hot Video Alert: Rihanna - Man Down

Rihanna premiered her controversial new video earlier this month on VEVO and I'm just now seeing it for the first time. "Man Down," Rihanna's fifth single from Loud, was written by Shama Joseph, Timothy Thomas, Theron Thomas as well as fellow Barbadian singer/songwriter Shontelle Layne. The reggae-tinged single, which was also produced by Shama "Sham" Joseph took it's sweet time growing on me but I have to say that it finally did.

The Anthony Mandler-directed video was shot in Jamaica and tells the story of a girl who's attacked by a man outside a dance club. The video actually begins with the violent act, wherein Rihanna seemingly shoots a man in cold blood. The story then starts at the very beginning, and shows us everything that lead up to this violent murder. I have to hand it to Rihanna and Anthony Mandler (The Killers, Fergie, Jay-Z) for pushing the envelope and talking about such a touchy subject matter. The video sparked criticism from the Parents Television Council, who lashed out at the star for her "cold, calculated execution of murder," disagreeing with the idea that killing a perpetrator is ever a solution.
"If Chris Brown shot a woman in his new video and BET premiered it, the world would stop. Rihanna should not get a pass." {SOURCE}
While I can certainly see where the PTC is coming from, I am all for an artist expressing themselves through their art. Rihanna responded in defense of the video, making the argument that it should be the parent's job to shield their children from such violent imagery.
"I'm a 23 year old singer who doesn't have kids. What's up with everybody wanting me to be a parent [to their children]. I'm just a girl, I can only be our voice. We all know it's difficult and embarrassing to communicate touchy subject matters to anyone, especially our parents. The music industry isn't "Parent's 'R Us." We have the freedom to make art, let us! It's your job to make sure your children don't turn out like us. You can't hide your kids from society, or they'll never learn how to adapt. This is the real world!"{SOURCE}
Anthony Mandler himself chimed in in response to the PTC's complaint, saying:
"It's (the video) doing exactly what Rihanna and I hoped it would do, which is shine a light on the very dark subject matter... This medium used to be a great medium of messages... I grew up in an era of Madonna releasing videos and sparking controversy. I think most people are wasting this medium... The fact that there's an argument to ban this because this will make girls retaliate from abuse with murder is skipping over the point. We obviously have a huge issue to deal with as a country."{SOURCE}
Download "Man Down," off Rihanna's latest album Loud on U.S. iTunes HERE.

Check out Rihanna on the web:

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Joe Jonas to Premiere 'See No More' Video June 29th on E!

I'm honestly still on the fence about Joe Jonas' new single. I wanted to love it but I can't help but think of Soundgarden frontman Chris Cornell's foray into urban-electro territory with 2009's Scream.  That album certainly had it's moments, overall it was a risk that just didn't pay off.  While Chris Cornell's leap from alt rock to electro-pop was considerably more drastic than Joe Jonas, I don't want the new material to be all about the production. Joe Jonas has a following, so no doubt his fans are going to love this but I just can't bring myself to get on board yet. The song is safe but safe isn't enough for me. The hook just isn't that memorable for me. I definitely hear elements of Justin Timberlake in this song, but that really only does one thing for me and that's wish JT would release new music.

If anything was going to redeem the song for me, it would be a hot music video, and from the looks of things, we may have one of those. "See No More" will make it's debut on E! News Wednesday June 29th on E! Check out this sneak peak of the video below, as well as the lyric video for the full song. The song was co-written and produced by Chris Brown and Brian Kennedy, the dudes behind Rihanna's hit song "Disturbia." If you like what you hear, "See No More" is out now on U.S. iTunes so download that shit HERE.
Check out Joe Jonas on the web:

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