Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Duets That Suck: "We're still siftin' through the rubble after a hundred-fifty years"

Duets: they can be teh aweSUM or they can suck. When the chemistry works (Queen & David Bowie; John Mellencamp & Meshell Ndegeocello; Pet Shop Boys & Dusty Springfield) it is ah-MAY-zing. When the chemistry sucks... well, you get songs like this.

"Accidental Racist" by B. Paisley, LL Cool J, & LT Miller
Brad Paisley had this to say about the provenence of this song: ""I just think art has a responsibility to lead the way, and I don't know the answers, but I feel like asking the question is the first step, and we're asking the question in a big way."

There are a lot of rappers Brad Paisley could have asked a question like this to, or, with; rappers who made social justice part of their message through their careers. LL Cool J is not one of them (Paisley likely considered Tone Loc, Young MC and Will Smith but considered Salt-n-Pepa too political for his taste).

A more cynical blogger might suggest that LL offered Paisley insulation and quasi-credibility without challenging the song's point of view. Paisley said the song wasn't a stunt but, remarkably, he hasn't revisited this topic (but there's still plenty of time).

Stunt or not, the song got Paisley a lot of attention. And inspired at least one fitting knock off.

Neither used up their esteem with me although LL might be on thin ice (it's the Grammy hosting thing, he's just not doing it for me).

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